Physical health: bodies and parts of bodies, or organs, that function how they should.
Mental Health: a human thoughtful life that functions the way it should ??
Ppl Peak performance is desired and implicated in physical health. We want our heart,say, to pump blood with out hindrance throughout the body.
Mental health is not always about peak performance.
An idea of Mental health that implies peak performance is only a particular goal for mental health. Due to the promotion made by the discipline of psychiatry and psychology, the notion of peak performance is very often assumed as implied in the usage of the term. However, The assumption of likeness actually more often contributes to poor mental health than it does to a persons benefit, or even societal benefit at that.
Yet the notion of peak performance in the scheme of similarity between physical and mental health is not a bad thing. Indeed, there are many aspects about mental health which do appear to coordinate with the same notions of physical health.
For example, various types of problem-solving; skills of peak performance of mental health can be achieved. Think of playing chess, or think of organizing one’s house or place of living. Problem solving skills so far as having good relationships can also bring about a sense of peak performance as it relates to one’s health of their psyche.
The problem with the equation between physical and mental health lay exactly in the fact that in order for us to understand what physical health is, we have to use our mental faculties. So it is that when we try to approach mental health in the same way as physical health we have the problem concerning the strange reductionism of a mind attempting to understand the mind.
It appears that mental health, or being mentally healthy, coordinates more with what a person thinks about themselves, and less about what outside psychological interventions we might impose upon a person.
This is at root the main issue with the psychiatric or psychological promotion that mental health is or acts the same or responds the same as physical health: that mental health extends to something more than the individual, that is, to a common human ideal.
There are many books and papers and a whole lineage of criticisms about psychology and psychiatry, how they are “soft sciences“. There is an abundance of history which shows clearly that early psychologists and psychiatrists wanted their discipline and practice to be on equal footing as the newly moneymaking and prosperous physical sciences. It is not difficult to find everywhere arguments of why this should not be the case, but as well, psychology began an intensive PR to approach mental health through “the disease model”. This is still the same approach that we have today that informs the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental illnesses, called the DSM, for short.
Probably the best and only thing that the conventional psychological and psychiatric approach can offer people that are suffering from the “mental illnesses”, and people who suffer from “poor mental health“, is to get them strung out on managed addictions.
Again this is not necessarily bad. Nevertheless, we have to ask ourselves, truly, what is it that we are after, and what is it that the client is actually after. For many people, the answer is “I just want to feel good”. So great. Why not let these people smoke pot their whole lives. Or put them on some medication that allows them to feel good, whether it be Xanax or Valium or Wellbutrin or Prozac?
Despite the fabulously logical and sensible idealistic Systems that degreed professionals like to develop in their libraries brought over from their clinics, Most people are often only helped in the sense that they “seem better” from their own subjective standpoint, but alas, mainly in the clinical setting with the doctor or the therapist sitting there giving them a barrage of surveys and interview questions so they can present the material to insurance companies for reimbursement.
We find even though I may be able to achieve peak performance in categorized and segregated aspects, in artificial designations and coordination of what the psyche is, structures of the mind, etc. Correlations with various parts if the brain or nervous system, Still depression will persist, and not just in some people. In fact, with most people who suffer, conventional psychological approaches fail for the psychological ideal. Even with the numerous applications into parts of the brain or parts of the structure of mind or the attempt to fix relationships between parts of the mind or the psyche or interfere with the physical functioning of the brain, people often enough still battle with wanting to kill themselves. People will still be depressed and anxious and hate their life. People Still suffer from the supposed mental illness.
However, if we are working in mental health towards this concept of peak performance, if indeed the mind is functioning like the physical body, and we are allowing this kind of intervention to solve the mental health issue, then we would have to reflect back upon physical health and ask ourselves why I can’t do opium all the time, or why I can’t athletes do steroids. Just a thought.
Again, this is not to whole heartedly knock and attempt to negate or destroy psychology and psychiatry and all the mental health attempts to help people.
This is a call to be more discerning and observant against what seems so naturally logical, or what appears to make sense to our Kantian-Hegelian reasonable consciousness, as it is indeed presently translated into all our modern approaches to health.