Where do you live?
I live in Bournemouth.
What is your job with Dorset Mind Your Head?
I am a Children and Young Person Practitioner. I am part of the team that delivers the Education in Mind programmes in schools so people will most likely see me in a school!
What led you to Dorset Mind?
I enjoyed working with young people as a Teaching Assistant and that role, as well as having my own children led me to become interested in mental health, especially how we talk about it and what can we do to help everyone live life mentally healthy. I attended a presentation given by Dorset Mind to parents of teenagers. I was so impressed that I looked on the website and applied as a volunteer and for my current role. I am also studying for a Counselling Diploma which fits in really well with my Dorset Mind role.
What are your interests outside of work?
I have 2 energetic dogs who need lots of walking. I love to read and organise a book group. I also try to get out on my bike regularly (when the weather is not too cold, or windy or rainy).
What is your story related to mental health?
I have had periods in my life when I have been low. It took me a long time to work out the triggers and some of the reasons, and I didn’t really talk to anyone about it. I was lucky to have family who were reliable and consistent and that helped hugely. I also have learned (and I still am learning) about what helps me to manage my mental wellbeing. I now recognise that I don’t have to cope alone, and I have got better at talking with someone who takes the time to listen.
If you could give someone a piece of advice what would it be?
The thoughts in your head are just that… thoughts. They are not the truth or facts, so you can decide what to do with them.
What is one self-care tip that you have found helpful?
Going outside and getting some fresh air always helps. It doesn’t have to be for long or be very energetic, simply a short walk round the block can make a difference.