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Showing posts from January, 2018

Message To Youth: It's All Okay

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“It’s exactly the same no matter what a person’s religious background may be, the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help.  Everyone who calls, ‘Help, God!’ Gets help. (The Message Bible)   Sunday night I went back to the church I grew up in and talked to the youth group about mental health. It was a surreal experience to know that X-Files is still popular and cosplay makes me cool - it was not so cool to be a nerd in the mid 90s.  I am trying to not think about my own youth group years with regret. I did feel victorious eating dinner with the teens like a normal person; I was so stuck in the eating disorder back then, memories of teenage meals are not pleasant. I thought I would share some of my notes.  I tend to write a lot to prepare for a presentation but never get to cover nearly all of it.  I focused on giving encouragement to decrease the sting of stigma even more so than usual.   ~~~~~~~~~~ No matter how

Mindfulness Makes Life Worth Living

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“May the God of green hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that our believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope! (336, The Message Bible)   Cause-and-effect assumes history marches forward, but history is not an army. It is a crab scuttling sideways, a drip of soft water wearing away stone, an earthquake breaking centuries of tension.   Solnit, Rebecca . Hope in the Dark: Untold Histories, Wild Possibilities (p. 3). Haymarket Books. Kindle Edition. When I first got out of the hospital, I was pretty miserable with intense PTSD. My goal was first to begin the day in a positive way, then the goal became to begin and end the day feeling well and then finally, the goal was to be positive during the middle of the day too.   It was hard but misery is a wonderful motivator. Many people know that a gratitude practice is one of my main wellness skills.  I do want to say though that I do not force my actual feelings. 

An Anxious Revelation

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“The story doesn’t end with Jesus. It continues in the lives of those who believe in him.  (The Message Bible, 240) How do you recognize a panic attack or being triggered?  How can one cope with hearing or seeing scary things?  I had an experience the other day that I felt compelled to write down afterwards and share.  So many people ask me questions about recognizing panic attacks, being triggered, coping with hearing or seeing things that I thought some people might find how I handled a recent intense experience calmly interesting.  (BTW, these are the kind of things we sometimes talk about at a Hearing Voices Network group.) I was sitting on the couch reveling in my new found peace and coloring.  All of a sudden, I felt a great sense of clarity. “It doesn’t matter what I do,” I thought.  “Life really is like in Ecclesiates, there is nothing new under the sun - all is vanity of vanities.  The only thing that really matters is being kind  - everything else is just icing on th