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December 9, 2014
I wanted to start off this month's blog by saying that I'm so thankful that I live in a society where I can both be honest about my mental illness and reach out to others. I know that we used to live in a time where you pretty much couldn't talk about any mental illness, but now there are so many people fighting the stigma. I am proud to say...
Nine years ago this December, my mental illness erupted through the surface of my otherwise regular life. Work was a snowstorm of activity with the holidays approaching, and I remember feeling super stressed out trying to keep all my end-of-the-year meetings with my many clients. This, on top of buying gifts for everyone on my list, which had...

Broken Radio Dial

December 2, 2014
Being understood is on my top ten list of desires.  I’d imagine it’s pretty high on everyone’s list but for those suffering from an illness which carries so much stigma, being understood can save a life.  I’m talking about being understood by the people that I do life with.  Trying to describe what’s going on, even to people that...
Outside its cold, inside I’m warm as I sit down to drink my hot cup of herbal tea and write my blog. Usually each month when I submit my blog, I address a certain topic that is important in the mental health community, but this month I want to focus on what it means to be thankful. How many times are we so focused on our troubles, and we forget to...

Hopping Off the Merry-Go-Round

November 26, 2014
Since I was diagnosed bipolar I’ve found myself in a constant cycle. I remain compliant with medications and avoid substances and I enjoy euphoria and life for that matter. However, the second I deviate from my prospective recovery regimen everything goes awry and I’m left institutionalized. The same happens with jobs and money. I am pretty...
 We've all heard it before, or something similar, "This too shall pass". "Just puts your big girl panties on". "You've been here before, you can do it again". While our loved ones mean well, in the throes of depression, these are sometimes the absolute worst things to say to someone living in what seems to be the depths of doom....

That's Not a Real Diagnosis

November 25, 2014
“That’s not a real illness.” “I don’t believe in mental health.” “If you don’t need medication, you must not really have bipolar.” These are just a few of the long stream of comments from people in my life, the most recent being “You know, I don’t think you’re bipolar, I think you have cyclomania,” because having a Bachelor’s in psychology...
We have a thing against weakness don’t we… well I for one do. When I look at negative unhelpful patterns going on in my life, despite the apparent effort that I have put in to change – I feel so weak and whiny. I often hate listening to myself talk to others because I am thinking that they must be thinking, “Here we go again…” See that...
November 22, 2014 is International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day, a day that much of society most likely does not know anything about. The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention (AFSP) in recognition of a resolution that Senator Harry Reid introduced to the senate, pronounced the Saturday before Thanksgiving to be “Survivors of Suicide Loss Day...

Hey Jealousy

November 19, 2014
I have a friend who is an expert in her field. She is respected by the community and gives presentations from her knowledge base. She is also a talented artist and sells her painted wineglasses at many gift stores in the area. She plays the piano at her church every Sunday. She travels with her husband and two kids and they hike and camp regularly...
Resilience is defined as “the ability to become strong, healthy, or successful again after something bad happens” or “the ability of something to return to its original shape after it has been pulled, stretched, pressed, bent, etc.” If you want a real-world example of something that’s resilient, think of a Slinky.I think it's fair to say that...

Six Simple Things You Can Do

November 18, 2014
Be HopefulHope is crucial for recovery, and there is good reason to be hopeful when it comes to mental health challenges.  The vast majority of us who get appropriate treatment and support get significantly better.  This is good news, but it is also not news that has been told until recently.  Hope is the ONLY predictor of recovery...