New Look Site on Be Ur Own Light: a Mental Health Recovery Blog!

I wanted to make Be Ur Own Light clearer to access and easier to read aesthetically. I hope you like some of the minor changes to make it more accessible.

Welcome too to all our new followers- we are nearly at 300 on WordPress and over 3,000 on Twitter and over 2,000 on Instagram.

Be Ur Own Light is written to challenge mental health stigma and more posts will be published shortly.

Thanks,

Eleanor, founder of Be Ur Own Light

Our Charity Appeal

Be Ur Own Light Blog is raising money for Jami, the Jewish Association for Mental Illness.

Jami can be found at http://www.jamiuk.org

They help people in the Jewish community in London who have suffered from mental illness and are recovering. They provide befriending, hospital visiting, anti stigma campaigns, educational talks, coffee meet ups and are just opening a cafe for people to socialise in.

To donate to the appeal just click on the link on Justgiving below. Any small amount is perfectly adequate and if you can’t give, please don’t worry! Thank you!

Together we can make a difference to people with mental health difficulties.

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/BeUrOwnLight

 

Breathe Life Initiative- Tackling Loneliness through Kindness

breathelife

Here at Be Ur Own Light, we support many charitable initiatives. We were contacted by ‘Breathe Life’, an amazing UK charity campaign to combat loneliness in the elderly and wanted to tell you about them so you can get involved wherever you are in the world!.

The campaign says,

‘Every day huge numbers of older people are dying from loneliness. Research has proven that the effects are as bad as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. In the UK alone, one fifth of older people feel lonely. …. We believe small acts of kindness can help loneliness‘ (Breathe Life)

This is sadly not just an issue in the elderly as 53% of those aged 18-34 have felt depressed due to loneliness. As more and more people live on their own, this affects millions of people in UK society alone.

Its time to reconnect with our elders and Breathe Life seeks to do this. Never before have we lived such separated lives from our loved ones, only connected by technology.

To combat loneliness in our society, Breathe Life partnered with Life Links Cheshire have selected 5 Elders- men and women from Cheshire in the North of England with a wealth of widsom, joy and resilience to share to people of all ages. You can email them for 30 days, important questions you want answered and they can share their knowledge with you (and in turn make connections to combat isolation and loneliness).  As the campaign states,

Together, we hope to give older people regular mental stimulation and a visceral sense of self worth by actively creating connections for them in which they feel they are offering something of value to society. We might restore a sense of pride that breaks the deadening effects of loneliness.’

For more information about the Elders, the Breathe life Campaign and how you can get involved:

breathelife

 

Gratitude to you: with thanks

Recently I have been having the opportunity to grow my little blog here and it is amazingly being read around the world. From the UK to Israel, The USA and Canada to Australia, Italy, Germany, Spain,  Norway, Finland, Croatia, Monaco, Indonesia, India, Peru, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Philippines, South Africa, Uruguay, Nigeria and Sudan.. I am amazed each day by where people are reading from and I am so so thankful. I write this not to brag but just because its so wonderful for me to reach people from different cultures. 🙂

We now have almost 60 dedicated WordPress followers, over 1,000 followers on Twitter, almost 700 in Instagram and 130 of my close friends and family on Facebook. This week, inspirational acid attack survivor Katie Piper liked one of our posts on Instagram about positive affirmation which was incredibly exciting!

We hope to grow the blog to spread light around the world for those suffering with mental health issues. I love receiving your supportive comments and sharing in online conversations with you all.

Today I am feeling so happy and thank you for engaging. I am also excited to announce a blog collaboration with Counsellors Cafe UK website, which will hopefully be posted in the next few weeks  and  Jewish Association of Mental Illness, who may be using my blog posts in the new year.

I am also thankful to Louie Rethink Mental Illness and Tim at Time to Change for getting me published before I even started publicising my blog.

With love xxxthankyou1

An amazing Care Coordinator

I was diagnosed with Bipolar 1 Disorder when I was just 16 years old. During the years that followed I had some brilliant psychiatrists and some dull ones that I didn’t click well with, met several good psychologists and had some excellent therapists for talking therapy or CBT. However, this post is dedicated to my old Care Coordinator who finished working with me a month or so ago and I just want to talk a bit about the role, what it entails and how much she aided my recovery.

When you have had an acute episode of mental illness (which may have included a hospital stay or day unit) , you may be assigned what is known as a Care Coordinator. Care Coordinators are usually mental health nurses trained to coordinate care between you, the client and the whole mental health team- whether thats a support worker, psychiatrist, psychologist. They talk to you about how you are feeling, give you advice and speak to other professionals on your behalf.

After my hospitalisation in 2014, I was assigned a truly lovely, wonderful woman to help aid me in my recovery at home. I am writing about her because sometimes its very rare to click  so well with someone, for someone to be so positive and upbeat and kind.

When I met my Care Coordinator, I was still very depressed and anxious, in my adjustment from coming out of hospital on a psychiatric ward. She used to come and sometimes I wouldn’t want to see her because I was feeling low or anxious and didn’t want to talk. We worked together for a year and she listened to all my fears about being maid of honour for my sisters wedding, getting back into work, dating, keeping up friendships with anxiety and how I was going to rebuild my life and cope again.

She provided a listening ear and helping hand in a time of immense darkness.

She watched me as I struggled to hold down work, recommending a support worker for me, and sessions with a psychologist, I had a course of 10 sessions. She asked if she needed to help me with housing or benefits (here in the UK this is money from the government if you are sick). Luckily I have a good family support network but my Care Coord became like a good friend to all of us and I grew to love our sessions and enjoy talking to her about my life, her life and its similarities :).

After 6 months to a year of being back to health and not acutely unwell any more, my Care Coord had to move on to help other people who were more ill than me. However, she will always have a special place in my heart for the joy and positivity she helped me find and I don’t think I will ever forget her.

Welcome and collaborations.

I just wanted to welcome all my new followers here on WordPress and on Twitter and Instagram to Be Ur Own Light.

At Be Ur Own Light, I have lived experience of bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders and depression. However, this blog is all about positivity, recovery, support and resilience.

I want to welcome you to my blogging community here and to announce we have some exciting blog collaborations to come.

If you would like to feature a guest post or for me to write a bespoke blog for your page- just email me at beurownlight@gmail.com

Wishing everyone a happy Friday! and recommending Katie Pipers book of positive affirmations today. They always get my day started off feeling positive!

Life update: Managing anxiety- When you wake up feeling overwhelmed.

It has been a while since I wrote an update about my life and mental health. Generally, I am doing OK and finding that I can cope with the anxiety, yet there are days when I wake up and feel overwhelmed and like I need peace and quiet.

I wrote this the other day,

Sometimes there are times when I will wake up and just feel so overwhelmed by the day that I cancel my plans and have to be quiet. Its like the internal me needs calm and peace and can’t get it without having space to breathe and to be.

I need breathing space from the world today and its madness in order to strengthen and restore me and build me back up. Peace and serenity and calm.’

This is quite an accurate description of how I feel sometimes. Its learning how to manage those feelings so it doesn’t ruin my morning/ whole day. Its about finding the positivity in the mundane, getting enough rest, eating well and trying my best to keep going.

Today I will be seeing my counsellor and catching up on the past few weeks. We have had a lot of Jewish festivals and spending time with friends, family, loved ones- so there has been a lot of socialising. At times, the festivals make me want to withdraw but there are also times when I feel stronger and happy and enjoy them also.

Yesterday my little step niece who is 3, came over with my step bro and his wife. It was so lovely to see her- she is adorable.

In terms of work, I am still looking at what is out there and working for my Dad in the mean time. My panic attacks have lessened so its just about finding a job thats right for me.

Lastly, Be Ur Own Light has a new Guest posts tab. Our first guest post is by Aryeh who has clinical depression and anxiety. Well done Aryeh for speaking out!