I have, for as long as I can remember, been interested in the behaviour, emotions and thoughts of others and myself. I am constantly introspective of my actions and emotions – monitoring how I behave and asking myself why I am feeling or acting in a certain way.
If a situation arose where someone acted strangely, I would be the first to analyse why they were behaving that way – why do some people react aggressively if you accidentally nudge them on the bus in the morning, while others apologise to you? Why is it that some people are charitable while others seem inconsiderate of others? The huge differences in human behaviour that arise through each individual’s unique experience of life have always interested me greatly.
It was only natural, therefore, for me to go on to study psychology, the scientific study of behaviour, thoughts and emotions. The vast, unexplored depths of psychology appealed to me. I was interested in learning about the human mind. Can we, as humans, understand our own consciousness? Can behaviour be predicted? My interest in questions such as these allowed me to be passionate about the classes I took in college.
In the third year of my studies, a part of my course included undertaking an Internship in the area of psychology. I applied to MyMind for my Internship as I admired their charitable ethos. MyMind is a non-profit organisation that provides accessible mental health care. It is the vision of MyMind that everybody should be able to access and afford mental health care should they need it. The work of MyMind positively impacts the lives of individuals in Ireland, improving Irish society as a whole.
I was excited to be an intern at MyMind in order to be involved in the work that they do for mental wellbeing. It was important for me to get experience in a mental health service in order to explore the everyday applications of psychological research; studying psychological theories and methods of treatment for mental illness would mean nothing were it not applicable in the real world.
Mental health is important to me as a student of psychology. I understand the importance of looking after the mental and physical health of individuals in our society in order to foster a wholesome outlook on overall health.
As Prince, Patel, Saxena, Maj, Maselko, Phillips and Rahman (2007) would say, there is no health without mental health. Mental health is gradually being accepted as a health need (World Health Organisation, 2001). The Comprehensive Mental Health Action Plan 2013-2020 (World Health Organisation (2013) has great potential to change the way in which mental health is treated in society today.
The action plan was described as a bridge to a world in which mental health is valued, promoted and protected.
In this world, mental difficulties would be prevented and access to treatment for those who are affected by these disorders would be timely and accessible. This would allow us, as a society, to attain the highest possible level of health and to foster a society free of mental health stigmatisation and discrimination. MyMind works towards this goal by providing accessible mental health care.
MyMind are ahead of the curve in terms of mental health services, so this makes it a great place to work as an Intern interested in Psychology.