My journey towards understanding mental health began following a significant personal health crisis: the removal of a pituitary tumour last year. This experience was not just a physical trial but a mental one, too, challenging my strength and resilience.
It highlighted the importance of mental health, self-care, and a supportive network. This realisation has led me to partner with the Mental Health Foundation, the UK’s leading charity dedicated to improving mental health.
The road to recovery, while a personal journey, has been one that I didn’t walk alone. It involved multiple battles, including coping with financial concerns, managing work commitments as a self-employed individual, and seeking help and support from friends, family, and clients. I teetered on a precarious tightrope of maintaining my professional commitments while contending with major surgery’s physical and emotional aftermath.
Being an accredited Instructor Member approved by MHFA England to deliver Mental Health First Aid courses, I was armed with the knowledge and resources that helped me navigate these tumultuous waters. However, the reassurance, patience, and encouragement from close friends and family served as a beacon during my darkest days. They weren’t just my safety net; they were my pillars, providing strength and stability when I needed it most.
The experience exposed me to a wealth of resources. I found solace in books that offered insights and coping mechanisms and fuelled my mind with empowering podcasts and uplifting music. These resources served as mental health tools, providing comfort, education, and the reassurance that I wasn’t alone in my struggle. Knowing where to turn and who to ask for help was my guiding light through this ordeal.
However, working within the mental health industry presented a unique challenge. Often, there is a misconception that you’re immune to mental health struggles as a professional in the field. There’s a presumption that we are the rock, always steady and always fine. This misconception can sometimes make it difficult for people to reach out or even ask, “How are you?” out of fear of an honest response.
It’s essential to understand that mental health professionals are not invincible. We, too face challenges, have vulnerabilities, and need support. It’s ok not to be ok, and it’s more than ok to ask for help when needed, irrespective of your profession.
Now, I’m about to embark on a thrilling skydive, an item on my personal bucket list, to highlight the importance of mental health and raise funds for the Mental Health Foundation. This leap from the sky is more than a personal achievement – it’s a testament to human resilience and the collective strength of a supportive community.
I urge everyone to join me on this journey. Any support through donations or by spreading the word on your social media can make a significant difference. Let’s take this plunge together, raising awareness and championing mental health for all. #SkydiveForMentalHealth #BucketListChallenge #MentalHealthMatters
Your support can make a world of difference. Remember, asking for help is a strength, not a weakness. And sometimes, asking, “How are you?” can have the most profound impact. Let’s all strive to create an environment where mental health is understood and supported, where everyone feels safe to say, “I’m not ok,” and confident that help is available.
To donate, simply head over to my Just Giving page. Once there, select the amount you wish to contribute and click ‘GIVE Now‘. You can choose to donate as a guest or create an account if you’d like to keep track of your contributions. Either way, every penny counts and is greatly appreciated. After donating, you can share the cause on your social media platforms, which can help us reach a broader audience. Thank you in advance for your generosity; your support makes a difference.
For more information, you can contact me by email.