05 June 2007

Sick days

A study published in the UK today indicates that mental health is the second largest reason for employee absences. Second largest! It is interesting that instead of inquiring into the societal implications of such a finding, there is an immediate emphasis on encouraging individuals to seek treatment.

Seeking treatment is, of course, incredibly important. Even a short course of focused therapy can help immensely in dealing with stress and acute symptoms. But in the same style as the American conversations since the Virginia Tech incident, there is an omnipresent insistence on focusing on "sick individuals" rather than the context in which they live.

So where does one begin to confront the reality of this world, this context?

By taking time for what seems futile: beauty, love, truth.
By striving to be the best person we are able to be.
By being kind.
By recognizing our privileges and our punishments, but neither punishing ourselves or others for them.

We are responsible for this world, we are responsible to each other, and most of all we are responsible to ourselves.
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