Change is superextravery difficult.

Be đź‘Ź kindđź‘Ź tođź‘Ź yourselfđź‘Ź When I started out taking care of my mental health and digging out of the mental illness hole, I had to make a lot of changes around things I thought were totally normal and necessary. Making those changes were tough because I’d spent years practicing and perfecting compulsions that made me miserable. I could spend entire days having imaginary arguments in my head about terrible things that hadn’t even happened but I didn’t know how

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Checking into relapse

Build a new relationship with uncertainty throughout your life or your daily practices will just logically and rationally have you struggling and suffering and relapsing back into a depressive anxiety hole. This video explains an approach that I credit with helping me recover and maintaining great mental health for the past eight years:

So you want to work in mental health…

I was part of a panel discussion at the University of Toronto recently on community engagement work in the mental health sector. It was exciting to see so many people interested in working in mental health. The questions and comments from the audience made it clear that they understood the need for patient-centered innovation and they wanted to create change in the sector. But with innovation, there’s turmoil, in any industry. So here are five things to consider if you’re looking at

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Is that juice cleanse just another compulsion?

I often get questions about the “right” foods to eat for mental illness recovery: What are the best foods to prevent intrusive thoughts? Will eliminating gluten lower my anxiety levels? Can a detox fix the chemical imbalances in my body? But if you’ve struggled with your mental health, be very careful about searching for a magic solution by drastically restricting or changing your diet, even if it’s temporary. Before you get started on a detox/cleanse, consider these three questions:

The City of Brains Project

Over at the CivicTechTO meetups, I’ve started up a project with a bunch of awesome volunteers to tackle a simple question: How do you find effective, accessible mental health services in Toronto? The answers, however, have been anything but simple. Each answer typically comes in the form of a story. And we’re finding that these are stories full of hope, frustration, tragedy, failure, success, challenges, kindness, inequality, complexity, barriers, and perseverance.

Want to succeed with your New Year’s resolutions? Build the boat first.

If you’re starting off the new year with plans to make changes that will support recovery from mental illness, be honest about where you are and the skills you’ll need to learn to get to where you want to be. Our goals are often the results of the skills we need to learn, so be sure to make space and spend time and energy on learning those skills. If your destination is on the other side of a lake, you need to

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The Failure Creed

I will fail because trying not to fail has only made things worse. I will fail my assumptions about other people and let them fill in the gaps with the truth. I will fail so I make progress. I will fail at lifting heavy things in my life, and then I’ll fail again and again until they’re not so heavy anymore. I will fail at trying to do what’s healthy for myself, and from that failure, I’ll learn what supports

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Being open about mental health isn’t brave.

It’s normal. It’s healthy. It’s responsible. Talking about stuff in your brain is no different than talking about stuff going on with any other body part. Talking about improving your mental health and fitness is no different than talking about improving your physical health and fitness. Swapping techniques on how to do difficult exercises is the same whether it’s a CBT exercise or a crossfit WOD. It’s all about health. Speaking about mental health isn’t brave. It’s the stuff happening

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