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Category Archives: Mental Health
Did you know that this is Keep Talking Mental Health Week?
#KeepTalkingMH, created by Rebecca Lombardo, is a movement to inspire others to talk about mental health. Rebecca encourages us to “Get out there and spread the word that there’s NO SHAME in talking about mental health or mental illness.”
Rebecca is the author of It’s Not Your Journey. This is her true story of the battle she fights inside her mind every day. She documents what she is feeling to help others while she helps herself. I had the privilege of being on Rebecca’s podcast and we spoke about the daily struggle of living with mental illness. But back to “Keep Talking Mental Health Week…”
Yesterday, July 20, 2017, the world found out that Chester Bennington died. While I like Linkin Park, I wouldn’t consider myself a huge fan. All over social media, the world is echoing similar sentiments from nearly three years ago, when Robin Williams died. (Ironically, today, July 21, is Robin Williams’ birthday.) Unlike my pleasant yet lukewarm feelings about Chester Bennington, I absolutely adored Robin Williams and news of his death hit me hard. I thought about it for days, weeks, and still, a tear comes to my eye when I remember him. Both of these celebrities chose to end their lives by suicide.
My family and few close friends have known about my history with mental illness for years. However, publicly I’ve been less vocal. Sure, I have alluded to my history with depression in blog posts, like this one. And I’ve mentioned mental health in general in posts like this one. In my book Welcome The Rain, I lightly touched upon my history with depression. And yet, it took an invitation by @TheSarahFader to write for her non-profit, @StigmaFighters, for me to truly share “my story.”
Thanks for checking out the podcast!
I recently had the pleasure of being a guest on Mike’s Open Journal Podcast (@Open_Journal_ ). This podcast is hosted by Mike Douglas (@Mike_Douglas_) where he talks about Mental Health. We had a delightful time discussing mindfulness and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, among other positive mental health ideas.
Thanks for taking the time to listen!
And thank you, Mike, for all that you do to bring awareness to the mental health community. Keep doing what you’re doing. You matter. You make a difference. And you are making the world a better place.
Love, Patience, and Faith can soften hardened hearts; heal tender wounds; restore broken spirits. These beautiful attributes not only nourish our souls, they turn the impossible into the possible; the undiscoverable into the discoverable; the unbelievable into the believable. Oh, how our spirits need the presence of Love, Patience, and Faith.
When I came across this behind-the-scenes video of Natalie Merchant sharing the meaning of her song “Wonder,” I sat silently, tears flooding my eyes, goose bumps covering my arms. Over the past few weeks, I have revisited this video and this song many times, contemplating the restorative power of Love, Patience, and Faith in my life.
“Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.”
When I am centered, grounded, and am at peace, each day becomes an adventure. I take what life gives me and I’m able to roll with it. With my calm mind, I’m able to think through tasks better; I don’t take others’ actions personally; I easily see the blessings in each moment. To be at peace is a beautiful feeling. Some days, I feel peaceful. On other days, when my heart feels troubled, simply Imagining Peace allows me to feel better.
I love being in motion, being active, being a Make-It-Happen kind of girl.
With mommying and wifing and writing and RunningMomsRocking, my mind overflows with to-do lists and plans. A large portion of my days is spent making sure that things run smoothly. I plan the work then I work the plan. And, more often than not, my efforts pay off: things get done, and they get done pretty darn well!
I also schedule in time to feed my mind, body, and spirit by exercising, spending time with family and friends, and going to church. While all of these activities promote positive well-being, I still find myself at near full-throttle because of my intense nature.
Why do you exercise? What drives you to get out of your warm bed, in the wee hours of the morning, and lace up those kicks so that you can hit the pavement? What motivates you to plan your days so that you’re able to consistently spend quality time at the gym? What inspires you to get your body in motion while so many others choose to stay glued to their couches? Is it to burn calories? To reduce your risk for lifestyle-related diseases? To shape your body by building muscle? To counteract the daily effects of stress? While all of these are valid, solid reasons, my response to Why do you exercise? can be summed up with one word: endorphins.
Music is well said to be the speech of angels.
Over the years, I’ve built up quite a bag-o-tricks for dealing with anxiety. Recently, listening to calming music has been my go-to self-soother. When I find myself overwhelmed, anxious, or stressed, I’ll turn on my iPod shuffle. This tiny piece of equipment only contains music. In fact, it only contains my Soothing Playlist, peaceful songs which have been proven to lower my heart rate within seconds. Free from the distractions of texts, phone calls, or social media apps, I’m able to tune out everything around me and focus on the music. Some days, I even tell my coworkers, “It’s just one of those days, y’all. If you see me walking around with my earbuds, just roll with it…”