Happiness Isn't Brain Surgery
Happiness Isn't Brain Surgery
Men's Mental Health

Men’s Mental Health
Connection between Anger, Anxiety & Depression
• Anger and Anxiety = Fight or Flee
• Many Faces of Anger
• Jealousy, envy, regret, guilt, resentment, irritation, anger, rage
• Many Faces of Anxiety
• Fear, stress, worry, anxiety, terror

• Depression = Hopeless and Helpless

But Men Don’t….
• Yes they do!
• Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
• Terry Bradshaw
• Larry Sanders
• Brandon Marshall
• Joey Votto
• John Kirwan
• Clarke Carlisle
• Dan Carcillo
• Oscar De La Hoya
• Shea Emry
• David Freese
• Andrew Jensen
• And more… https://headsupguys.org/22-male-athletes-speaking-depression/

Signs of Possible Mental Health Issues
• Anger, irritability or aggressiveness
• Noticeable changes in mood, energy level, or appetite
• Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
• Difficulty concentrating, feeling restless, or on edge
• Increased worry or feeling stressed
• Sadness or hopelessness, or suicidal thoughts
• Feeling flat or having trouble feeling positive emotions
• Engaging in high-risk activities
• A need for alcohol or drugs
• Ongoing headaches, digestive issues, or pain
• Thoughts or behaviors that interfere with work, family, or social life

Low Testosterone
• Testosterone is the main male hormone, and is responsible for a number of things, including reproductive development as a male. It's made in the testes, and impacts a number of functions. The most common symptoms of low testosterone are a decreased sex drive, erectile difficulty, tiredness, mood changes and occasional memory problems. If you have low testosterone, you're at increased risk of developing diabetes, hypertension or a number of other chronic conditions.
Men and Postpartum Depression
• One in 10 new dads met standard criteria for moderate to severe postpartum depression
• Depression impacts the quality and quantity of:
• Interaction with children -> developmental delays and attachment issues
• Personal health behaviors -> increased vulnerability to stress and illness
• Unlike women who are often sad or withdrawn, men may become irritable, aggressive, and even hostile
Men and Postpartum Depression
• Causes
• Stress of a new life to care for (finances, capabilities)
• Grief over losses of freedom
• Frustration due to how much baby monopolizes partner’s time
• Poor sleep
• Stress if baby has any special needs or is in the NICU
• Stress if other siblings do not respond well
• Stress and exhaustion if mom also has PPD
• Personal history of depression
• Poor relationship with one or both parents
• History of abuse
• Relationship stress – with a partner or with in-laws
• A lack of support from others

Impact of Mood Issues
• Reduced immunity
• Increased blood pressure
• Increased weight and poor nutrition
• Reduced physical activity and fitness
• Constant fatigue
• Reduced libido (or drastically increased in the case of compulsive sexual behaviors)
• Worsening relationships with partner and children
• Guilt
• Addiction

Specific Contributors
• Critical transitions in men's lives—adulthood, marriage, fatherhood, retirement, deaths
• Many boys learn that they should avoid stereotypical strive to be tough. Some do this by attempting to suppress emotions, thoughts, and behaviors potentially associated with vulnerability
• “Men should be able to control their feelings.”
• “Depression makes you a burden”
• Men are often socialized to be aggressive and to appear fearless and invulnerable
• “Depression= weakness”
• “Real men don’t ask for help”
Specific Contributors
• Many men have problems both identifying and expressing feelings and may express them nonverbally or through metaphors (I wanted to punch something. Felt like I was kicked in the gut)
• “Talking won’t help”
• Competition for power, success
• External factors (such as workplace and family relationships) can greatly undermine men's motivation to change substance-related behaviors

Counseling and the F-Word
• Despite what television will tell you, counseling is not always about gushing with emotions. Some people just aren’t comfortable with that.
• Additionally, about 65% of men respond better to solution-focused approaches, like cognitive behavioral, dialectical behavioral or Acceptance and Commitment Therapies
• It is important to remember that coaches cannot diagnose or treat a mental health issue. They can only coach you in moving toward goals you identify.
• Your counselor will recognize you as the expert on you, and help you resolve your issues by providing information about new tools, ways of looking at things or resources that can help you feel better faster than you could muddling through on your own.
Steps you can take TODAY
• Easy Ones
• Drink enough water and have decent nutrition
• Get quality sleep
• Regulate your circadian rhythms
• Do something fun each day
• Start becoming mindful
• Identify what is truly important in your life (Begin with the end in mind)
• See your doctor to rule out any physical causes of depression or anxiety (hormone, thyroid etc)

Steps you can take TODAY
• Easy Ones
• Spend 15 minutes making a list of as many things you can think of that trigger your anger or anxiety.
• Identify the FACTS for and against the belief that there is a threat
• Identify the PROBABILITY that the issue will turn into a problem
• Identify if it is an issue that is really worth your energy, or even something you can control
• Slightly harder
• Get ENOUGH quality sleep
• Develop self esteem so you are less afraid of rejection, isolation, failure
• View failure as a learning opportunity (Famous Quotes Overcoming Failure)
• Address unhelpful thoughts and the inner critic that are keeping you stuck
• Exercise at least 4 days a week
• Nurture your relationships (schedule it in if you have to)
• Check your musts and have-tos and prioritize

• Depression, anxiety, addiction and eating disorders impact millions of men each year.
• Prevention involves making sure to get quality sleep, good nutrition, adequate social support and develop an awareness of and ability to communicate your needs and reactions.
• Counseling can help you identify and address some of the obstacles that might be keeping you stuck.
• If you prefer a solution-focused approach, look for a therapist who uses CBT, DBT or ACT.
• There are a myriad of self-help books and information out there. These, like this podcast, are not a substitute for professional help, but are excellent resources for education and early intervention.
• Mental health issues can be caused by thoughts, situations, and alterations in body chemistry. Getting a physical (ugghhh…I know) is one of the best places to start to rule out the easy fixes.
Connect With Us