In this final installment, guest authors share their experience with mental health challenges and victories, both personally and professionally.
My Non-Linear Grief Journey: A Daughter’s Love
Ilana Shapiro Yahdav, grief recovery specialist, shares her journey following the loss of her father. “In the early days, as I sat fumbling for air, I promised myself that when I found my way, I would devote my life to helping others do the same. A few years ago, I was finally able to keep that promise.”
“Sorry, I am going to be late.”: Returning from Parental Leave with Postpartum Anxiety
Caitlyn McCarthy shares her insights and experience on the often-underserved topic of postpartum mental health. “Anxiety has ebbed and flowed throughout my life since I was a teen. … However, despite all my worries and ailments, my anxiety never made an appearance in or at my work until I returned after the birth of my second child.”
Chris Hall shares how he missed an important opportunity to help a team member suffering from mental illness. “As I sat across from Dave and told him he was fired, his head hung in despair. … Even though I was ostensibly doing the ‘right’ thing for the company, it was clear to me that I’d missed the chance to help someone who needed it. As a manager, I had taken the easy way out.”
How I’m Balancing a Career in Tech and Living with Mental Illness
Bradley Gabr-Ryn, digital product designer and mentor for Designed.org: “There’s something I’ve never been comfortable with, and that’s talking about it in the present tense. … So in case anyone else is feeling a similar inner conflict, I’d like to open up and share some of the things I do that help me not just survive, but thrive.”
Mental Wellness and the Gut-Brain Axis Connection
Ann Sinclair, holistic therapist and mental wellness advocate, draws upon her knowledge of how gut health contributes to mental health. “Recent studies have shown that the gut microbiome plays an essential role in mental wellness. This revelation is known as the gut-brain axis connection.”
Social Anxiety and Depression: “It Sucks, Big Time!”
An anonymous author shares their challenging journey of despair and hope. “This isn’t a short term problem for me … this is my life. No matter how many self help books I read, prescription drugs I take or psychologists I talk to, I am never really able to completely over come my subconscious.”
Clearing the Fog
Pete Burgess compares mental impairment to the disorienting effect of literal fog, and advice navigating a path forward. “The fog will lift, but it could take some time. It should take some time because for a mental fog to lift, it requires healing. You do not want to rush healing, but there are things that you can do to aid it.”
How to Save a Life
Brandon Gregory, who lives with bipolar depression, on suicide prevention: “It’s always a good thought that leaves a door open for someone to come to when they need help. ‘Call me if you need me.’ It really is a caring thing to say, and I commend anyone who says it. But, truth be told, it’s not the most effective thing to say.”
We’re so glad you joined us for this series. 💛
Please check out the other article in this series: a beginner’s guide to mental health, addressing your own mental health, supporting others, and mental health at work. More to come in the days ahead.
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