A convention (con) is coming to town and you want to go with your friends, but how do you survive a convention with binge eating disorder? Con-going is a great time and a wonderful social activity. But there are also a lot of ways for your binge eating disorder to be triggered while you’re there. Here are some quick and easy tips to not only survive the con without binging or overeating, but to have an awesome time with your loved ones as well. Keep reading »

The closure of mental health treatment facilities is often a disaster for the patients being treated there (Inpatient Mental Health Treatment Facilities: Who Needs One?). When an abusive mental health treatment facility in Indianapolis closed, the patients flooded the city’s low-income housing. The success stories still have apartments. The rest of the patients are either in jail, another institution, or dead. The closure of mental health treatment facilities must be done in a very careful fashion. Keep reading »

Addiction relapse prevention includes playing that tape to the end. Drug addiction is a difficult thing to live with; our brains often want to relapse. We have a tape in our heads that remembers the “fun” we had in active addiction–the rush of the substance, the camaraderie we felt with other users, and so forth (The Allure Of The Addiction Culture And Lifestyle). In my Alcoholics Anonymous group, we have a saying–play that tape to the end. In other words, remember the bad times–the trips to the psych ward, the visit from the police, the coming down off of the substance, whatever the cost was. This can help with addiction relapse prevention. Keep reading »

Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is a stigmatized disorder, and we need to separate social anxiety disorder and shyness to decrease stigma (What Is Stigma?). Some people say that people with SAD are just shy, which is perceived as cute, and if we were to go out more it wouldn’t be so bad. This belief does not separate shyness from social anxiety disorder, and they are not decreasing the stigma around social anxiety disorder. Keep reading »

Fewer things in this life are worse than suffering from mental illness for a prolonged period, but you can enjoy a happy life after a mental illness diagnosis. In the blink of an eye, life can change and all of a sudden you’re not the person you once were. It’s been eight months exactly since I recovered from a serious episode of depression and anxiety and gained my life back (Recovering From Mental Illness: A Self-Help Guide). In this blog and video, I want to share how my life has improved and become rich again. (And I don’t mean rich in the financial sense). I believe there’s no greater gift than giving back, so I hope my experience inspires you to realize that you can enjoy a happy life even after a mental illness diagnosis. Keep reading »

Everyone, at some point in their lives, has indulged in mindless eating, whether they have binge eating disorder (BED) or not. It’s so easy to do and simple to not even notice it until it’s entirely too late and you’ve eaten far more than you intended. How can you stop mindlessly eating and take charge of your binge eating recovery? Keep reading »

An anxious brain is an active brain, and it can feel that there’s only space for anxiety and certainly no room for gratitude. Don’t be mistaken; it’s not that people living with anxiety don’t have gratitude in their heart. Having an anxious brain doesn’t mean that someone is cold, uncaring, or ungrateful. Often, the opposite is true: sometimes people experience anxiety such as social anxiety disorder or generalized anxiety disorder because they care a great deal. People living with anxiety do have gratitude in their heart, but it can feel like there’s no room for gratitude in an anxious brain (Anxiety: It’s In Your Head [Your Brain]). This latter part, though, is a false belief.  Keep reading »

After a recent depression relapse, I was reminded that I must fight self-stigmatization. Recently I was slapped in the face by an ugly bout with depression. Not one or two days of it—the obnoxious kind that parks his recreational vehicle on your front lawn for a few weeks. It’s been playing Duck, Duck, Goose with me for a few months and I’ve been trying to avoid it. But it caught me. And it invited a few metaphorical demons to join this sadistic game. Keep reading »

I recently jumped on the adult coloring book bandwagon to find they help relieve anxiety and depression and now there is no turning back. Adult coloring books have been a great way for me to decrease my anxiety and even lessen symptoms of depression. So why should you try adult coloring books? Here are my thoughts.

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Giving thanks is hard when your family is a mess. When I started thinking about writing this Thanksgiving post, I almost wrote my manager to let her know I’m not qualified to write about mental illness in the family. Do you know why? Because I feel like a fraud. My family relationships are not all cleaned up and pretty like I’d like them to be. Rather, the messiness in my family amplifies as we make plans for the holidays. I want to wave a magic wand and make all of my relationships work, if only on these special days. I know what it’s like when your family is a mess and it’s hard to give thanks. Keep reading »