Having people who inspire you is extremely important for your mental health. My main inspirations are friends and family, however I’m also inspired by various sports men and women. There’s a lot of bad things highlighted on the news everyday. Tragic events happening all over the world and closer to home in recent weeks, with the terrorist attacks. If you’re like me and you already suffer with your anxiety, such events can influence you leaving the house, as you don’t feel safe to do so. It’s hard I know, but this is when it’s important that we also remember all the positive events taking place and I use my inspirations to help me do this.
Everyone loves a good under dog story, someone who has achieved great things against all the odds.
This Egyptian Paralympian (Ibrahim Hamadtou) was told that he could never play table tennis as he had no arms or stumps to grip the bat. He proved that with single mindedness and remarkable determination, anything is possible!
The Paralympic moto is ‘Yes I Can’. I’m sad to say that most of the time mine is ‘No I Can’t!’ I find myself blaming my depression for this but sometimes this is just a convenient excuse. When I’m playing sports my competitive spirit shines through, if only I could view depression as my latest opponent, maybe I could put it in it’s place! Seeing my inspirations and all their achievements gives me a huge boost and makes me want to try harder to emulate their success.
Inspirations- achieving greatness
Before anyone says, I know its sad to have a picture of yourself on your bedroom wall, but it does have a positive purpose. The person pictured next to me is a professional darts player called James Wade. The thing we both have in common is that we’ve won tournaments whilst battling our mental health illnesses. James is one of the best darts players in the world, where as I play table tennis in local leagues. James suffers with bipolar and had to have time away from the sport due to his illness. I too had to have a year out from playing in the league when my anxiety levels reached there highest peak and I struggled to leave the house.
James Wade is ranked number 6 in the world and is an extremely talented player, he also comes across as a really nice guy, he’s always respectful of his opponents and conducts himself well, win or lose. When I watch him on the stage he appears very comfortable and in his comfort zone, but off the stage doing interviews and even on his walk ons, I can see a lot of myself in him. Frailties such as low self-esteem, looking awkward and nervous and like he wants to be anywhere else. That’s why it’s truly remarkable that with such obvious confidence issues, He’s still able to perform to such a high standard in front of crowds of thousands of noisy fans, not to mention the millions watching on sky sports! For this reason I admire him more than any other sportsman.
Going back to the pictures on my wall. They’re the first thing I see when I get up in a morning and I use them as a really positive message to start the day. They remind me that anything is possible and I can still achieve good things despite of my illness. Whether your inspirations are well known celebrities or friends and family, doesn’t matter. What matters is that you use them as a positive influence in moving forward and becoming the best version of yourself.