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The Impact Of Misinformation On Wellbeing and Mental Health

We've all heard a version of it from a parent, relative or friend: If you don't have anything good to say, don't say anything at all. By extension, it also seems to be the case that, if you don't support a particular cause or concern, you shouldn't do or say anything-- you simply ignore it.

As it turns out, however, doing or saying nothing is the same as doing or saying something bad-- frustratingly, it's essentially a form of misinformation, and with more than a nod and a wink to certain politicians, we now live in the Golden Age of misinformation.

If that's not bad enough, the power of misinformation-- the power of ignoring something and doing nothing-- is being used by people who would prefer we all believe that the issues of wellbeing and mental health are overstated and not worthy of attention. How sad. How cynical. And, how misinformed.

Wellbeing is a close cousin of mental health, and both concerns deserve our complete, informed attention. The traditional advice so many of us have received over the years, is to "tough it out"-- "develop a thick skin", "get a stiff upper lip" and "get on with it". Sometimes that advice may help but much of the time it does not. Is there an alternative strategy we can follow, to help us deal with difficult moments?

I believe there is-- develop a practice of self-care. Self-care is the foundation upon which wellbeing and efforts to bolster our mental health, are based. It's grounded in awareness (which is an antidote for misinformation) -- awareness of the thoughts in our minds, and the feelings/emotions in our bodies.

Don't be a purveyor, or believer, in misinformation about the critical importance of wellbeing and mental health-- and don't let others become purveyors, or believers, in misinformation about wellbeing or mental health!


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