How super cars and mental illness are alike: the perfect analogy?Tweet
At first glance, you may not see how a super car can be used as the perfect analogy for how mental illness impacts our daily lives.
Because I am a lover of all things cars, it’s easy for me to see just how well these high-end, fine-tuned machines work when attempting to explain the mental pain.
Super cars, like that of the Bugatti Chiron, are built for one thing and one thing only – speed. With a top speed of approximately 300mph (ca. 483 km/h); 482kmph, it is the roadrunner on steroids. I know, mind-blowing, right? Perhaps just as amazing is that when pushed at top speed, this amazing piece of engineering will run out of fuel in approximately twelve minutes. Basically, it’s all about fun over fuel efficiency.
I oftentimes hit the wall and spin out of control.
Now that you have some car knowledge, I can explain how super cars and mental illness are alike. From my own experience, I kind of feel like I’m always going three-hundred miles an hour. Sound familiar? This is especially true inside my head. Maybe you can relate…?
Furthermore, when my mind is racing from anxiety, it depletes my mental fuel in what feels like the same amount of time as the Chiron. In other words, I lack the longevity needed to go the distance.
And like that of these speed demons, I feel like I’m always in danger of hitting the wall and spinning into a mental health crisis. It must be said, that I am nothing like that of the driver because I can’t put the dangers out of my mind and just go for it! Therefore, my triggers win the day.
The Chiron and I are equipped with a small gas tank and no reserve.
Interestingly, when I think about it, my goal is to stop being the car and work on becoming the driver. Professional drivers train to focus and condition their reaction time in order to keep from hitting the wall; essentially, they must learn to always be in the present.
Are you now seeing how super cars and mental illness are alike? I think the takeaway from this analogy is this: although mental illness, like that of a super car, accelerates quickly (PTSD triggers) and exhausts all its fuel (mental energy), one can use the driver as their inspiration to beat their mental health condition.
While this is true, the road is long and the journey is gruelling. Despite this, we can make our lives better. My friends, there is hope. Learning mindfulness, seeking help from a mental-health professional and sometimes medication will put you in the driver’s seat – putting you in control of your destiny.
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