Mental Health Talk newsletter – Issue 8, 29 November 2019

By Jeremy Godwin.

Let’s Talk About Mental Health is a weekly podcast that is about much more than just talk – talking about mental health and wellbeing is a great start, but we need to do something about it as well. With that in mind, welcome to Mental Health Talk: the weekly newsletter that takes the Let’s Talk About Mental Health conversation further by sharing inspiring and practical stuff related to mental health and wellbeing. Let’s get talking!

This week on Let’s Talk About Mental Health…

This week’s episode/post of Let’s Talk About Mental Health is out now on all major platforms and is called Let’s Talk About… Stress. It’s all about what stress is, why it happens, and how to deal with it (both at work and at home), plus how to manage your mental health and wellbeing every day in order to reduce the effect stress can have on you. Listen here:

Alternatively, you can read the written version here or find a direct link to listen on your preferred podcast platform here (including an audio-only version on YouTube). Looking for old episodes? Head over to the Episodes page of the Let’s Talk About Mental Health website where you can stream episodes (via Spotify) without having to leave the website – because life is too busy to waste time searching for a podcast!

Oh, and please take a moment to hit that ‘follow’ button (like the one in the player above) because the more followers my podcast gets the easier it is to help other new listeners find it (search engines are only interested in stuff that other people are interested in!). Thanks 🙂

In Mental Health News This Week…

Every week I like to share a few articles about mental health and wellbeing that are a bit thought-provoking and I try to find the right balance between optimism and practical advice… which is a real challenge, I have to admit! With that said, here are three articles I found this week that I wanted to share with all of you:

  • Mental health, environment top concerns for young Australians (SBS News, 26 November 2019) – A survey of over 25,000 Australians aged 15-19 found that their most important issues were mental health (36.2%) and the environment (34.2%). For those of you with children – if you haven’t already had a good talk with your kids about mental health, now might just be the perfect time. Read the article here.
  • Lifeline’s suicide text helpline more accessible to people in rural and remote locations (ABC News, 20 November 2019) – I have lived in regional Australia since 2015 and if there’s one thing that has stood out to me it’s the lack of mental health resources compared to when I lived in the city (there is one counsellor in my town, and they only visit once a month). Lifeline Australia has just launched a text helpline and I for one would like to see much, much more of this sort of thing happening (BTW did you know that more than 8 million people live in regional Australia? That’s more than 30% of the population!). Read the article here.
  • How to tell if your digital addiction is ruining your life (The Conversation, 27 November 2019) – As mobile devices become more ubiquitous in our lives (look at me with the big words this morning…!), I’m sure many of us stop and ask ourselves if we’re spending too much time on these handy little devices and not enough time interacting with the real world – and if you’re not asking yourself that, you should be. Or at least looking up from your device when you cross the road. This article offers some excellent food-for-thought about finding balance when it comes to your digital addictions (and you all know by now how much I love a conversation about finding balance!). Read it here.

Article of the Week…

Do you take hours to make a simple decision? You may have Fobo. (The Guardian [Australia edition], 25 November 2019) – Forget about FOMO (fear of missing out); as we are provided with more and more choice in our lives, the phenomenon of FOBO (fear of better options) is starting to garner more attention. I have to admit that I get exhausted and even a bit overwhelmed by the sheer volume of choice available (have you tried shopping for something on eBay or Amazon lately?!). This article presents some interest theories about what drives FOBO and the decision-making process. Read it here.

YouTube Video of the Week…

5 Steps to Stop Procrastinating, Focus & Be Productive (What I’ve Learned): Working from home is a real killer for someone prone to procrastination, which I am. I can get so easily distracted by housework or the dreaded Netflix when I really need to knuckle down and work on my business, so from time to time I use a ‘brain-dead’ moment to watch a YouTube video on something inspiring. This week I found this 10-minute long video that gave me five easy steps to stop procrastinating. Has it worked? It’s early days yet so I’ll let you know! (BTW My favourite comment on this video by a viewer was “found this while procrastinating” which made me laugh). Watch it here:

My 3 favourite pop culture things this week…

Pop culture! Look, I’m not going to try to keep up with what’s popular with anyone born this millennium, but there’s still plenty of stuff to entertain those of us who are slightly more mature in our years 🙂 And I believe that good high-quality entertainment can serve to improve your mental health and wellbeing if you’re struggling – I got through the worst of my depression and anxiety in 2011/2012 with a combination of medication, therapy and RuPaul’s Drag Race/Real Housewives of Beverly Hills/The I.T. Crowd. Here are the things I’m loving this week:

  • The Mandalorian (TV series, Disney+) – I have to admit that I’m not a massive fan of the Star Wars franchise (don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind it) and so I wasn’t going to watch The Mandalorian… then I did and I am now hooked – it turns out that resistance is indeed futile (I know, I know, wrong franchise – #StarTrekForever). Do I know what’s going on? Not really. Am I enjoying this surprisingly-well-written story? Absolutely! And don’t get me started on the Baby Yoda memes…!
  • Will & Grace, Season 3 (TV series, NBC in USA/Stan in Australia) – This third season of the rebooted show (which means that technically it’s Season 11) is its final season, and I’m okay with that. It’s been nice to have a bit of nostalgia and there have certainly been a lot of highlights across these three new seasons, however I think the decision to bow out now is a wise one. Like any walk down memory lane, it’s always a fine line between nostalgia and depression when you see how much everyone has aged (except Megan Mullally as Karen – what is that woman’s secret?!). It would be nice to see television and cinema have more focus on telling new stories instead of chasing the warm and fuzzies of a bygone era that doesn’t exist anymore…
  • Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings (TV Series, Netflix) – “Eight stories based on different Dolly Parton songs” sounded like a cheesy idea for a TV show, but somehow it works. Honestly, only Dolly could pull this off – it’s the right balance of sweet, sentimental, loving, kind and all of those other things we love about the 73-year-old Queen of Country. BTW – I enjoyed this article in The Guardian about Dolly’s current moment back in the spotlight.

2 Instagram Posts That Made My Week…

I continue my daily love affair with Instagram, the social media platform for the highly visual. A word of advice: don’t waste your time following accounts that make you feel shitty about yourself; instead, fill your feed with inspiration and humour (because what you choose to put into your mind, body and spirit will directly affect how you think and feel). With that said, here are a couple of posts I loved this week:

Mind full versus mindful. Pretty much says it all. Regram via @aolanow who does some amazingly-simple-yet-powerful illustrations.

I think I’m low-key obsessed with the We’re Not Really Strangers account, which takes ordinary photos and adds meaningful and reflective words to them. Powerful. Find WNRS on Instagram at @werenotreallystrangers

1 Quote to Reflect On…

You probably know by now that I love a good quote to reflect on (just please NO WALL DECALS! Lol! #IKnowIHaveIssues), so to finish up here’s one I love this week:

“An untroubled mind, no longer seeking to consider what is right and what is wrong, a mind beyond judgements, watches and understands.”

Buddha

Next Week on Let’s Talk About Mental Health…

Next week’s topic will be Let’s Talk About… Self-Talk – I’ll be talking about what it is, why it matters and how to work through the things that you think and feel so that you can be more positive and self-confident. Podcast and written version available Monday morning (Australian time). Podcast available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and others (see my Podcast page for links) as well as an audio-only version on YouTube.

ICYMI: LTAMH Instagram Post of the week…

I post several times a day on Instagram, and if there’s a mental health topic I can’t find or create a meme for then I haven’t come across it yet. Follow at instagram.com/ltamhofficial.

Random cat photo of the week…

Why a random cat photo of the week? Because it’s Friday and that’s what the internet is for! Apologies if you’re a dog person. Enjoy 🙂

Until Next Time…

Thanks for reading! If you liked this newsletter and you haven’t already subscribed to Let’s Talk About Mental Health, please do so at the bottom of any page on the website. If you have any ideas for what you’d like to see/hear/read more of on Let’s Talk About Mental Health or in this Mental Health Talk newsletter, get in touch with me via social media using the links below. Take care of yourself and remember: be kind to others, you never know what their struggles are so!

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LET’S TALK ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH.
BECAUSE THE MORE WE TALK ABOUT IT, THE EASIER IT GETS.

Let’s Talk About Mental Health © 2019 Jeremy Godwin

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