in my natural state, besides my half straightened bedhead 💀
My life always seems to be throwing me unfortunate curveballs so to say, and sometimes it really becomes too much for me to handle without feeling totally defeated. Life is all about how we choose to play the cards we were dealt. I haven’t been dealt the best cards to say the least, but I can say that although totally defeating at times, I am thankful for all of the hardships I’ve overcome because they’ve made me so incredibly strong and resilient. I’ve become so accustom to negative outcomes and things becoming worse that I’m always subconsciously prepared for it. I don’t know if that’s a good or bad thing, but it definitely cushions the fall. It also helps that I have a terribly cynical sense of humor that makes things easier to handle, haha.
No matter how disheartening the hardship, I never doubt that there is a light at the end of the tunnel for me. Without faith in a better tomorrow I don’t think I’d be able to survive everything thrown at me on top of my anxiety & depression already weighing me down. I feel so truly blessed to have never felt the need to turn to any substances to numb my pain or take my mind off of things. It shows me that not everyone is the same and with the right amount of will power you can do anything you set your mind to.
I just turned 25 a few days ago & I’ve never had a drink, or smoked a cigarette, weed, taken pills, etc. I’ve remained completely “straight-edge” through unspeakable things and for that I’m forever proud of myself. Unfortunately my sisters went down the opposite road, showing me both sides of what an “unfortunate” life can lead to. I know they are meant for much more, and I always keep them in my heart. Just because you make a few “wrong” choices does not mean you can’t learn from them and do better. WE ALL make mistakes. Luckily life is full of second chances, every new day is another chance to start over. Your past doesn’t have to be your future. #3amthoughts#keepingitreal#mentalhealthawareness
Nourishing your body AND mind.
This was a concept that was pretty foreign to me two years ago.
Back then I was stuck in a mindset that solely focused on my aesthetics. I didn’t care if I was sore or tired. I didn’t care if I was hungry or full, I just wanted to hit my set ‘macros’ for the day. I didn’t care about self care if I felt stressed or anxious.
I was trapped in a mindset that completely made me lose sight of my own self awareness.
Nourishing my mind and body still feels like a foreign concept to me over two years later. Some days I still feel those restrictive thoughts creep in. Some days I feel my mind telling me to push harder or skip that rest day I had planned.
The difference is self awareness is a very real concept to me now. I no longer say ‘yes’ to these thoughts, instead I tell them to ‘eff off.’
I know I’m not perfect and I probably never will be. I know I will probably always struggle to nourish myself in all aspects, but I sure as heck will never stop trying.
Nourishing your body doesn’t mean just eating healthy foods and working out. It can mean taking a walk to clear your head and getting froyo when you feel like it.
Nourish your body and your soul. And even when you feel like you can’t, remember you CAN. 💜
Please Read // "Not All Wounds Are Visible" is on the blog. When people are dealing with depression, anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, suicidal, and lost; those issues are often not apparent to the eye. That's why I titled this post, not all wounds are visible. If you or you know someone suffering with depression, fear, anxiety, or any other mental health issues, don't be afraid to reach out and just listen, check in on them, offer love, support, and most importantly, offer suggestions to counselors and professionals who can truly help and support your friend or loved one. There's no shame in needing help and you should never feel bad about who you are, where you are in life, and the issues that you are dealing with. Remember that you're life has meaning, you matter, and that you were created for a purpose. (P.S. The bruises are just makeup!) 🖤 #MentalHealthAwareness
Eats to exist and by force. Constant depression, anxiety and OCD. Desperate to change but too unworthy to try. Eating as little as I could get away with. Hating every once of my image.
15kg of muscle gained. Eats to fuel workouts and by earning. Regular episodes of depression, anxiety and OCD. Motivated by fitness and longing to be happy again. Trying to recover but obsessed with numbers, image and exercise. Maintaining on 2600 calories religiously.
Finally let go. Eats for hunger, boredom, convenience, enjoyment and building. Exercises to grow confidence and for the love of it. Still occasional disordered episodes but able to manage and handle them. Happy to be spontaneous. Living.
Picture 4: In progress. Gonna get absolutely massive and jacked. Like Shrek. On steroids. Easy.
It takes time, a lot of pushing, failure, exhaustion, challenging and change but it is possible.
Bish bash bigboy over bones
Bish bash beaten my demons
21DAYS STRESS FREE CLEANSING
Day 19-Reality Check
No matter what your doing
Your gonna have challenges getting there;
The goal is to love your process
and not give up.
Believe me and I’m pretty sure you’ve already noticed,
This is not a easy game.
The game of fighting for what you want
Is a fight for the strong hearted
And I believe in you and your process.
I believe that your break through
is on its way.
It’s basically at your front door
Your just still wondering around the house.
When you decide to get it together and open your door to life and take that first breath of fresh air leading to your dreams
That’s when the real fun begins.
Until then this is DAY 19 the reality check
Of your progress. #loveyourself#bekind#doitfortheculture#blessings#loveyoursupport#bayarea#mentalhealthawareness#createyourownreality
Brian waits outside while we take over his home to interview and film the other Brian about his battles with mental health issues ... A documentary by @laradamiani about Al Archer and the Emmaus Community he set up over 20 years ago
#throwbackthursday The photo on the left is me 8 years ago shyly waiting in a corner of a cold marquee to read some words from a script aloud wishing no one would look at me and losing the battle with the voices in my head telling me how much I ought to hate myself...
The photo on the right is me yesterday speaking to over 100 women on body confidence and mental wellbeing on stage in London. Today I was still hearing those same voices telling me to hate myself, and I still thought I didn’t want to be seen. But now I give a mental finger to those voices and still get on to do what I want to do, only now with more passion and energy and in fact self belief than almost a decade ago - because I’ll never be rid of those voices but I have enough evidence to know, even when it doesn’t feel like it, that I’m not ruled by them. I now have enough proof that I can live my life and be exactly Who I Am in spite of (and sometimes because of) those silent screams.
Never allow self doubt to hold you back. This lesson I take into 2018... #mentalhealth#mentalhealthawareness#bodyimage#bodypositive#bodyconfidence#bodypositivity#selflove#selfbelief#speaker#comedian @stagecoach_bus @elliehopleypt @fernemccann @fequalshq
This one of year is fantastic for catching up with mates and shredding trails. ☀️🤘🏼However it is also a dark isolating time of year. I have memories of not so long ago on a beautiful hot summers day like today, coming across @mark_dunlop sitting on the side of a trail with his head in his hands, disappointed in his riding post concussion. A few days later we lost him for good. .
Last week we lost another young shredder to suicide. 2 deaths in 2 years is too many. As mountain bikers we are hard sods, too bloody tough for our own good to talk or ask for help. .
I myself have a history of depression and self harm. I know how hard some days it is to even interact with other people let alone talk. But we get better at it, for our own health as well as others. Lets start doing more talking, and even if you can’t verbalise it, just message for a ride. #hereforyou#lookaftereachother#mentalhealth#support
What does gaining 10kgs really look like?
I think people get stuck wishing for a glamorous weight-gain transformation where muscle is gained rather than fat, and that the muscle miraculously appears in the form of a big firm booty. The truth is, gaining weight is tedious, uncomfortable and awkward - but so unbelievably worth it.
In the first photo I’d already gained almost 5kgs from my lowest weight. I was eating almost 1000 calories more than I had been, and my body was awkwardly storing new (and necessary) body fat as it adjusted to the extra food. I wasn’t allowed to exercise and I berated myself every day for being “skinny fat”.
In the middle photo my body had adjusted to almost 2,500 calories, but my mind hadn’t. I hated how I looked and was now dangerously over-exercising to feel better about gaining weight. I was training twice a day intensely, and my body was extremely stressed, held a lot of water and appeared “fluffy” - I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t gaining lean muscle. At this point, I was just about to start coaching with @nickcheadlefitness, and damn, did I need it.
Fast forward to now, where I’ve spent another couple of years gaining weight - this time with a lot more knowledge, patience and hard work. I’ve cut my exercise in half, am eating upwards to 2,500 calories a day, and both my body AND (more importantly) my mind are finally more at peace with my 10kgs of weight gain and responding positively.
This has taken me YEARS, I’ve made loads of mistakes and I’ve relapsed numerous times. I didn’t get to skip the awkward changes in my body, and I certainly haven’t gracefully transformed from skinny fat to shredded bodybuilder.
I’ve still got cellulite.
My body still holds water each time I increase my intake.
And I definitely gain extra body fat as I continue to gain weight.
But, I could be happier in the skin I’m in now, and I wish I could have just told myself in the first photo to hang in there, embrace the fluffy feelings, and just persevere toward the health and happiness awaiting me with the extra weight ✌🏻
If this isn't me 😂😂 Remember, life is about BALANCE and we require different things at different times. Some days, weeks or even months, we might pour ourselves into work and sometimes we might sit in our underwear, binge watching Netflix and eating peanut butter with a spoon. BOTH are valuable 😘
Some people thrive off work and love what they do and other people prefer to do odd jobs while travelling or working on skills outside of the office 🤓🏖 We're all different and the way you live your life isn't up for scrutiny. Listen to your intuition, DON'T feel guilty and just do you 😊🙏 #yoga#yogaeverydamnday#yogadaily#yogapractice
Ik this is cheesy...but I'm going to try to be positive...it's so hard 🙃😫 but I am trying and I'm giving you a compliment, I never give compliments...so take it ha-ha...I'm not only doing this for myself, but for anyone who ever comes across my page. I would NEVER want anyone to have suicidal or depressive thoughts because of any of my posts...I wouldn't wish this horrible feeling on absolutely no one !!! I would love to make people happy ....❤️😅
Depression can be year round and it definitely comes and goes.Some days I’m happier than ever and i can go weeks with being happy and then one little thing can send me into a meltdown of depression that can last months. it being cold outside really makes things harder for those who struggle with depression. There are less things to distract yourself with. Less sunshine and activities. You feel lonelier..Depression comes in waves and sometimes you feel like you’re drowning in it. So just listen before you judge and be helpful to those who need you. i’m always down to make new friends and do new things so anyone who feels sad or needs a distraction, i’m here for you. Depression is HARD and it’s hard to be alone. if this time of year is hard for you, come on over to my house and bake some Christmas cookies with me! So all aboard the struggle bus bc we are all in this together. From one depressed person to the next, let’s all be here for eachother year round but this season tends to be more difficult. #depression#mentalhealthawareness#bekind#behelpful
A dose of Thursday night Self Love Potion. “No matter your position, you can always have ambition”, it doesn’t matter what you do or who you are, you can always succeed and make a difference. You might be in Retail like me, Hospitality, Finance, a Mum, Dad or retired. As long as you have goals and your striving towards them it doesn’t matter what your title or level is. I took a serious side step (not a step down like I told myself initially) to leave my job as a store manager and step into a retail role. I decided rather than just stay stuck & disappointed in myself I would give it my best so I got on the grind and ambition led to success. Ive been meeting my sales targets & helping people transform their skin.
I hope you are all letting yourselves be proud of what you are giving and achieving.
P.s this is the start of a new series on strengthening our Mental Health ❤️
Izso & Killer have been inseparable since Izso's close call. Killer has been tending to Izso, helping him clean, cuddling whilst sleeping and being so gentle with Izso when play fighting.
Today, the concept of self care came up in different conversations with different people and I couldn't help but think of the #kittiesthatcould .
We need the love and support of others to help prompt us towards self care - without being reminded, we tend to skip a meal, a break, a full night's rest, catching up with friends or family ... It might be called "Self" Care but it doesn't take just the self to initiate it, especially when we need it the most.
#kittiesthatcould are here to remind you - Have you practiced Self Care today? 🐾
“Sometimes we need someone to simply be there. Not to fix anything, or do anything in particular, but just to let us feel that we are cared for and supported.”
I'd like to give a big jolly middle finger to my eating disorder for consistently twisting things in my head to make me feel like a failure every time I can't live up to its unrealistic and downright deadly expectations.
And then I'd like to give myself a big hug and a high-five for being strong enough to stop exercising when I did. It was an extremely hard thing to do. It took an incredible amount of self-control.
I felt awful about myself for stopping. I felt like a lazy, ugly, worthless, stupid, piece of garbage and I had to sit there and allow myself to work through those emotions. And in the end, I knew I had made the right choice by completely going against what my ED was telling me to do.
As soon as my OCD started fixating on needing me to perfectly line up the miles/time/calories burned (ex: 1.00 mile, 5:00 mins, 50 cals) and it wasn't perfect (ex: 1.02 miles, 4:57 mins, 49 cals), I knew I was in big trouble and I had to stop immediately. I used to get so obsessive with getting perfectly balanced numbers, that I'd end up biking over 50 miles at a time because I just couldn't stop until it was all perfect, the numbers. It takes over so quickly and it's almost physically painful to pull myself out of that obsessive mindset.
And somehow I did.
After I calmed down, I stretched, I breathed, and I felt stronger and more in control of myself. Yes, I felt strong and in control by *not* exercising.
So then I danced to invisible music in my own private weirdo way because a long, long time ago, before I let calories and numbers rule my life, I used to love the way my body moved when I felt free.
Working on my #anxiety with my #headspace#mediation this morning as I've an assessment appointment at the Pain Management clinic for my #fibromyalgia , so I'm all in knots and having a crazy head :( I'm finding every excuse not to go, but I know I need to :( 🍀 wish me luck 🍀
Christmas is a time where food abounds, there are office cookie trays, salted caramel lattes, big dinners, followed by chocolate boxes. What you choose to eat or not eat, is ok. Your eating choices do not define you as a person. If you struggle with not eating enough, you are still a good person, and you can continue to heal. If you struggle with eating too much, you are still a good person, and you can continue to heal. If you are some where in the middle, you too are a good person, and can continue to heal.
A blog post that’s late, but worth the wait: the recipe for my pumpkin, cheddar and chive scones is up on #louslittlekitchen .com now 💛 Bake yourself a batch and feel fancy AF as you enjoy them with a spot of tea! 💁🏽♀️ The link is in my bio: @louslittlekitchen 👩🏽🍳💕
You have purpose here💛
Friends/partners of people with mental illness:
We (ppl with MI) are just like you...but we aren’t. We’re living with a condition(s) that at the least, impacts every aspect of our lives. So many experiences fall under the term “mental illness”, but one word characterizes them all: PAIN. We didn’t ask for this pain nor do we deserve it; it’s just something we’re forced to cope with every. single. day.
I know you don’t want to see us hurting. I know it’s fucking hard having to watch us endure the agony that is MI. Keep in mind, however, that as difficult as it is to witness us battling depression, BPD, etc., it’s 1000x more difficult on our part. We just want you there during it.
You can’t take away our illness, nor do we expect you to. You are not our caregiver, you are not responsible for us and our actions, so don’t take that on. Instead, express your concerns and demonstrate caring within the boundaries of our relationship. Focus on your role as (girl/boy)friend/spouse, while taking care of yourself.
As with any relationship, communication is key. But when your person has MI, listening and empathy become even more crucial. We face enormous stigma from society; thus, we NEED to be able to express ourselves—and consequently heard, validated, and accepted—in the relationship we have with you. As our trusted partner/friend, you have significant influence on how we view ourselves and the world, for better or for worse.
Most of us, as a result of our illness, need a little extra support. Some of us have needs particular to our disorder and how it affects us as individuals. If they haven’t done so, ask your person to identify their needs, and together come up with specific, realistic ways you can help meet those needs. And assuming your person matters to you, make it a priority to do these things as often as you humanly can.
Lastly, affirmations are everything! Tell us how you see us, as we tend to forget. Remind us of our strengths, accomplishments, our positive qualities that are the reason you’re with us. Be our cheerleader, our champion, our biggest fan. It means the world to us! 💖
Folks with MI—what would you tell a friend/partner regarding your illness?
Hearing the words that I don’t fit under the Borderline Personality Disorder criteria medically anymore after 11 years of pure suffering and hell I can’t begin to express the feeling of relief, hope and joy I felt after my last therapy session for the year today. My illness has made me feel every emotion and feeling under the sun, and be able to shift away from that and not feel the over bearing symptoms of this diagnosis is a whole new world of happiness. The illness has made me bleed, have near death experiences, has consumed me, isolated me and discriminated against me. I have been labeled psycho, crazy and a whole other range of negative boxed labels because a lot of people I was surrounding myself with could just not look or dig a little deeper to understand how terrifying this illness is to live with when left untreated. I just again want to thank the people who stayed in my life the last 11 years and never gave up on me, you have no idea how grateful I am to still be here and living the life I’m meant to be living. I am not cured as such, I am just living presently and at ease. Which is all I ever wished and hoped for. #borderlinepersonalitydisorder#mentalhealthawareness#mentalillness#recovery
Fluttershy is really really good for cuddles. She’s super soft!!! 😍😍😍 I’ve been cuddling her a lot the past few days. Kitt hasn’t been doing too well. She’s in bad mental places and dissociating a lot, so I’m out a lot now. I said a lot a lot just then. 🤔🤔🤔 Being out is okay, but I don’t want Kitt to be upset. I’m painting and drawing her pictures so she has some prettiness and kindness to come back to. I’m gunna write her a super nice letter too! 😊😊😊 ~ Fi (I forgot to say it was me... 🙈🙈🙈)
Who said speeches on mental health always have to be serious?
I always ensure when I deliver a talk I take the audience through an emotional journey with me and part of that journey is LAUGHTER! Because there is always a light end of the tunnel.
Being an advocate for mental health is an honor, and to have been chosen to share my own journey time and time again is very humbling.
By talking, we not only reduce stigma, we also empower others to know they have a choice and realize they can get help.
Thank you to the organizers and the audience for being interactive during last Thursday's event at The Light Ball Abu Dhabi, Yas Island.
The event is created by @darknessintolightad, and it was an honor to give another inspirational speech for #DarknessIntoLight Event.
Through our own experiences, not only we empower ourselves to accept and heal, we give others the chance to realize the same. There is always hope!
For future bookings, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or reach out through DM. Thank you!