When the soul speaks

Slavica Đukić Dejanović, a neuropsychiatrist, talks to BGonline about the fears of a contemporary man, prejudices, the soul, anxieties and therapeutic conversations.
These days, uncertainty is what frightens people the most and represents the area which they have the greatest difficulties managing.
Modern technology has improved the quality of life in many areas of business and segments of life, but the fact is that there is an increasing number of those who are concerned about not knowing what awaits them professionally in days to come, whether their existence will be jeopardized, how they will deal with illnesses which no contemporary man is spared from…slavicaDjukicDejanovic
-These are all continuous stresses brought by the modern society, together with uncertainty and questions: are we going to have anything to live off, am I going to get fired, to the withering fact that some illnesses are diagnosed too late, many people suffer because they are alone, so the need for being close to someone is completely understandable.
These are all legacies of modernization that affect mental health as well. – says Slavica Đukić Dejanović, neuropshychiatrist. – If you are having problems at work, with your partner, a relative, you should not wonder: “Why me?”, but accept the fact that this happens to other people as well, find a way out of the situation and mobilize your energy in order to achieve your goals.
If someone loses their job, the worst thing they can do is sit and despair over it. They need to go out and look for a job, just like after losing a friend they are creative in their solitude or find some new companions. Setting pragmatic goals in these circumstances has a relaxing effect. Sometimes all of these situations are stressful and difficult, especially for emotionally fragile people. They should seek help from a psychologist, sometimes even a psychiatrist, in order to consult and talk to an expert, receive a piece of advice. Psychologists and psychiatrists are everyone’s friends.

Fear of insanity

slavicaDjukicDejanovic5Even though people are being increasingly open and there are more and more people who do not hesitate to seek help when it comes to their mental health, there are still many who have prejudices and feel discomfort when it comes to visiting a psychiatrics’ or a  psychologists’ .
– Inside each and every one of us, on an unconscious level, there is a fear of insanity. – says Slavica Đukić Dejanović.  We often choose not visit a psychiatrist and do not talk about insanity because of the fear that exists deep down inside of us.  However, talking about how every person needs a psychiatrist is highly important, together with the fact that celebrities, without hesitation, say they have their own psychiatrist. All of the above contributes to the weakening of belief that a person is “insane” if they attend such consultations and conversations.
The fact that there is an increasing number of young people who do not hesitate to come to a psychiatrist’s office is encouraging.
– It is important to know that all of us can change for the better, but the one whose soul is ill is in need of a therapeutic talk with an expert. We can learn some extremely important things from a therapist, starting with how to help ourselves, how to learn how to breathe, calm ourselves, relax the muscles…

Cure for the soul

There is an increasing number of people with no adequate education who offer to help people with different problems and “heal” their souls. However, a thing that many quite often tend to forget is that the soul should not be played with.
– Work concerning problems of the soul is truly delicate, it requires a great deal of education and experience, so even young psychologists, psychiatrists and psychotherapists work under the supervision of older colleagues and experts for a long time. – Slavica Đukić Dejanović mentions. – The ones who have finished some courses regarding this topic and have acquired certain skills through them and those who are self-taught, to us, experts, present an issue and we do not trust them. Human soul should be learnt about as the medical equivalent to the other organs, so if we know what a heart cell is we should know what a nerve cell is too, as well as know which processes happen within it. Excellent psychiatrists can make an improvement and help, whereas these “light” alternatives can be useful only in the context of recognizing a problem that someone has. Even recognizing the problem brings a relief, but what happens after that…?
Time might be wasted not knowing what how to deal with the problem. If timely diagnosed, mental illnesses, just like any other, can have more than a favorable outcome.
How to survive uncertain and turbulent times is a question to which people are searching for an answer daily. Slavica Đukić Dejanović says that people in the Balkans have the same problems as people in other countries and that anyone’s soul can hurt in all the same ways.
– We are a nation “of pain and pride”. Even when we are struggling, when we are in pain, even when that is our very soul, we carry ourselves with pride. We can fight, use other people’s experiences, but unfortunately the same thing that happens to other people – happens to us as well. Depression is becoming more and more common, the number of anxiety disorders is increasing and the numbers for schizophrenic and paranoid disorders is no different from the rest of the world and other countries. The person who becomes ill knows how difficult it is when the soul is hurting and it is especially difficult for people when they are at the stage of returning to a normal life. That is the time they confront the fact that they used to be on the other side of sanity and that collective fear of insanity initiates another fear – “Will I go insane again?”. This is why it is good for people to be self-confident and have a good therapist who will become their friend as well. For a lot of people, it is with their psychiatrist that, for the first time, they confide in someone about something they have been suppressing for years and have remained silent about. After the disclosure and an eruptive reaction and a lot of crying, comes a great relief.

Branka Gajić

Photo: Sanja Rajković

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