Mental Health Training

Mental Health Awareness, By Sandra Greatorex

Posted by on 25 May, 2017 in Mental Health |

Mental Health Awareness, By Sandra Greatorex

When I watched the video’s about Heads Together I was quite moved by the passion of Prince Harry, William and Kate in helping people who suffer with Mental Health.  This week it is Mental Health Awareness Week with a surviving or thriving theme.  How would you describe yourself?  A number of years ago I suffered with depression and anxiety and had to take 4 months off work.  It made me realise that my health was the most important thing as you don’t have quality of life without good health and well-being.

The sad thing about mental health is the stigma that is attached to it.  People don’t understand and turn their back on you when you really need them to support you and understand you during this time.  All you need is for someone to take the time to listen and let you talk, encourage and support you to do everyday tasks.  What they don’t think about is that one day this could happen to them.

Going back to the time when I suffered from depression it all started where I felt really tired and had a terrible sore throat.  I went to see my doctor who said she thought I had depression and anxiety.  I had disbelief as it was just a sore throat and I felt tired.  She took a blood test to check for a virus but the results proved that this was not the case.  There was no particular one thing that had caused the depression just life had got on top of me.  It felt like my body had had enough and was now controlling me.  I had a safe little world it was when I was asleep.  I could have slept 24 hours a day and still would have felt tired.  When life got too much for me and I had issues to deal with I would lay down and go back to sleep.  There were no problems in the world of sleep.

Prior to having depression I had worked with people with Mental Health problems and couldn’t understand why they wouldn’t turn up to outings. But now I fully understood as I had my up days and down days.  I never knew how long the up would last or even the down for that matter and there was never a particular reason why I would feel down.  I was prescribed anti-depressants but understood that these would help to make me feel better but I also opted for counselling.  The counselling was really useful it helped me to understand that the more I slept I fed my depression.  I was set targets of doing chores around the house the first time it took me all day to clean the living room.  I would dust one piece of furniture and then lie down and go to sleep.  It was hard as I knew the only way to get better was to make myself do different tasks.  I have fully recovered I am aware of maintaining my mental health and well-being.

I was in my forties when I had depression, I think it is so sad in society today that there are many young people out there that suffer with their mental health and struggle with life.  They have so much to look forward to but the pressures in their life is just too much.  At a time when they should be having so much fun and enjoying life with their friends and family.  As I was a youth worker many years ago I have an interest in helping young people.  For this reason I have decided to donate 25% of the sales of my book ‘Your Choice, Your Future’ to Heads Together for young people.  I want to make a difference to young people to put them in a better place even though it may only be a fraction of the many that suffer with Mental Health.

The illustrations in the book should be an inspiration to young people as they were designed by a young women Sarah Bradley who I had the pleasure of coaching.  She was only 18 years old at the time.  So my message to young people is ‘Don’t give up, have fun and enjoy life’.

If you would like to help young people with Mental Health and show that you care purchase a copy of ‘Your Choice, Your Future’.  It is a workbook to help young people to explore options around their future career.  It also helps with their personal development.  To purchase a copy go to my website