Mental Health Talk newsletter – Issue 11, 20 December 2019

By Jeremy Godwin.

Welcome to the final issue of Mental Health Talk for 2019! This is the weekly newsletter that takes the Let’s Talk About Mental Health podcast further by sharing inspiring and practical stuff related to good mental health and wellbeing – because talking is a great start, but we need to do something about it as well. With that in mind, let’s get into this week’s newsletter with a round-up of practical advice for improving and maintaining your mental health and wellbeing…

In the newsletter this week…

Hi there and happy Friday (well, Thursday if you’re in the Northern Hemisphere)!!! As I mentioned above, this is the final issue for 2019, and the next episode of Let’s Talk About Mental Health (which will be released on Monday 22 December) will be the final podcast episode for the year. I’ll be taking the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day off, and will return with a new newsletter on Friday 3 January followed by a new podcast episode on Monday 6 January.

In this week’s newsletter, I’m sharing articles on beating holiday stress, making new year’s resolutions that stick, how to create abundance through gratitude, and more. Let’s talk!

This week’s Episode of Let’s Talk About Mental Health…

This week’s episode/post of Let’s Talk About Mental Health is Let’s Talk About… The Holidays. It’s all about how to navigate the various challenges of the holidays (like family, stress and even grief) and what you can do to look after your mental health and wellbeing. Read here or listen below:

Also available on all major platforms (Apple, Google, Spotify, CastBox, Stitcher etc.) – get links here.

Also, please take a moment to click on the ‘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! 🙂

Articles of the Week…

Since this is the final issue for 2019 and we’re slap-bang in the middle of Christmas/New Year’s, it’s a time of year when we tend to think about where we are, where we’ve been and where we’re heading (which is why next week’s episode is all about Reflection – more on that below). With that in mind, this week’s articles are all focused on things you can do to improve your mental health and wellbeing as we head into a brand new year (and, of course, a brand new decade).

12 Ways to Beat Holiday Stress (Black Dog Institute, 29 November 2018): I’ve covered practical advice for getting through the holidays with your mental health intact in this week’s episode of Let’s Talk About Mental Health, and here are some more tips from Australia’s Black Dog Institute. Read it here.

What Giving Back Does For Your Mental Health (Thrive Global, 10 December 2019): The act of giving isn’t just for Christmas – it can have a positive impact on your mental health and wellbeing all year long, as demonstrated in this article. Start 2020 off with a giving mindset and watch your world change for the better. Read it here.

6 Secrets of New Year’s Resolutions That Stick (Thrive Global, 9 December 2019): I’m not a big fan of new year’s resolutions personally, but I know there’s something about the start of a new year that makes many of us consider what we want to achieve – so if you’re setting new year’s resolutions, read this article for advice on how to make them stick. Read it here.

You probably knew mindfulness could help you with stress. But did you know it could save your marriage? (ABC News, 15 December 2019): Mindfulness is another highly-recommended practice for good mental health and wellbeing, and this article about a consultant psychiatrist and psychotherapist who provides mindfulness-based couples therapy makes for thought-provoking reading. Read it here.

How to Use Gratitude Every Day to Attract Abundance (Thrive Global, 11 December 2019): You’ve no doubt heard of the positive benefits of gratitude practice, which can make you more inclined to look for the good in situations. Did you know it can also help to attract abundance into your life? More good feelings = more good feelings! Read it here.

A LITTLE SEASONAL ADVICE…

FOR THOSE OF YOU IN THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE: It’s winter and for many of you the cold, dark days may lead to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Be proactive about making your mental health and wellbeing your number one priority – this article from Harvard Health has straightforward advice to get you started; read it here.

FOR THOSE OF YOU IN THE SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE: Summer has arrived, which is supposed to make us all feel lovely and happy but that’s not always the reality, especially if your mental health isn’t the best at the minute. There are lots of reasons why summer can be tough on some of us (such as those covered in this article from The Mighty, consisting of reasons from people who actually have mental illnesses rather than a well-meaning professional); get practical tips on how to look after your mental health this summer in articles here and here.

YouTube Video of the Week…

How to be Happy – The Happiness Advantage (Sean Achor, Genius Network): I’ve shared one of Sean’s videos previously (his TED Talk which has amassed more than 12 million views) but as I’m preparing to undertake a postgraduate degree in 2020 majoring in Positive Psychology (which is pretty much the study of wellbeing), I’m reviewing a lot of stuff on the field at the moment and found this video of a talk he gave in 2016. Clocking in at just under 13 minutes, it’s an easy watch and Sean talks about how happiness is a choice, and happiness is possible. Watch it here:

Favourite Instagram Post of the Week…

Give me a moment or two and I’ll happily explain why Instagram is the best social media platform out there (if you choose to approach it with a focus on positivity and you don’t buy into all the nonsense being flogged by influencers)… anyway, my absolute favourite post this week comes from the @selfcareisapriority account, and it is:

Quote of the Week…

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:

“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”

Marcus Aurelius

Next Week on Let’s Talk About Mental Health…

Next week’s podcast topic will be Let’s Talk About… Reflection. Since it’s the end of the year (and the decade) it’s a good time to look back on where we’ve come from in order to figure out where we want to go, and I’ll be guiding you through how to do so in an objective and positive manner so you can improve your mental health and wellbeing. Podcast and transcript/article available Monday morning (Australian time) – find it and all past episodes here (where you can also subscribe to have it land in your inbox each week). 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. And if you like it, please leave a review and tell your friends/family/etc!

Random cat photo of the week…

Why a random cat photo each week? Because why not! Happy Friday!

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.

Have a brilliant week, take care of yourself and remember: be kind to others, you never know what their struggles are and what you put out comes back to you!

JG 🙂

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LET’S TALK ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH.
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© 2019 Jeremy Godwin

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