AS a young woman of 21, I know the pressures that we can sometimes feel.

It has occurred to me since studying, how many of us suffer with some form of mental health on a regular basis. Seeing as it was national mental health week a few weeks back, I thought that it would be good to talk about it.

My school has joined up with MHFA Mental Health first aid union and recently has asked students to represent the school with their own voices, as well as the teachers who are currently in the process of being trained to deal with this ever prevalent issue. Mental health in the acting industry is becoming overwhelming, as well as with other professions such as teachers. Comedian Russell Howard recently stated that 71 per cent of teachers have suffered in some way in his sketch all about what teachers do for our society. Stress figures have almost doubled in the past five years.

Mental health begins to control you, until you fight back. It can creep up on you without you realising, until it all just becomes a bit too much.

It’s easy to bury our feelings and pretend that there is nothing wrong. But what will you achieve by doing this? You need to remember that you are not alone.

There are many things that can cause pressure in today’s world.

As well as what we look like, we constantly feel that we have to worry about everyone’s opinion of us and whether they like us, over-analysing every minute detail. Which again achieves what? This overactive and anxious mind can begin to cause busy traffic in your brain which leaves you unfocused, restless and exhausted. A friend of mine once said that it’s good to imagine “What if?”, as in a number of cases, what is the worst thing that could happen?

Some anxiety is based on a phobia or a past event, so it is important to remember that it is in the past so should not affect your present or your future. This is easier said than done, however, self-determination is the key to success here and reaching out when it does get too much.

I am the first one to tumble when it comes to talking to other people, but I would recommend it because a lot of the time your friends or family may be able to connect with your emotions and have even experienced something similar themselves.

Find out what relates to you and makes you feel safe. Music is a way of distracting your mind from a situation you may find scary. Music helps to relax your ever hectic thoughts. I have a few phobias and these can send my body into panic mode, but that is not to say that you can’t do anything about it, of course. Depending on the scale of your phobia, it is possible to control it but it may take some practice. Finding a way to confront the phobia face on will eventually cut it out altogether, but it requires patience and confidence in what you do.

As to how we view ourselves, we often find it easier to criticise than to congratulate our best parts of ourselves. Whether it is physically what we look like or our life choices, there is still a pressure to look perfect and to follow the perfect life. How boring would that be? It’s about finding confidence in what you have and what you do and that is where the beauty lies. Learn more about yourself as half the time you are your own worst enemy.