The Good Days and the Other Days

Good Days and Bad Days

We all have those good days and we all have bad days too. It’s dealing with the bad days after the good that is difficult, so how do we do it? I have some tips to get you through the bad days and in this video, I share them with you.

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Looking Back – Eating Disorder Awareness Week

As we come to the close of our week, Cheryl and I are looking back on the week and what we’ve learnt.  If you missed any of the content, find it at the Eating Disorder Awareness Week event hub!

“Try and remember this, stand strong, keep fighting and don’t ever give up!”

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A Battle With Bulimia feat. Elle Rose

Bulimia and Elle Rose (aka SecretLadySpider)

Guest vlogger Elle Rose talks about her battle with bulimia.  As part of our Eating Disorder Awareness Week, she sheds light on this important topic.  It’s one I knew nothing about.  Today, though, I’ve learnt more about it.  Why not check it out?

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Become a PatronDisclaimer: I am not an expert, nor am I medically qualified.  This blog is based on my personal experiences only.  Always seek medical advice in the first instance.

Do You Want to Change the World?

How To Change the World

Make your bed.  I know, not something that sounds very groundbreaking or earth-shattering, but William H. McRaven says that if you want to change the world, start by making your bed.  That way, you will have accomplished the first task of the day.

How often do we, as mental health sufferers, say that we need things to change?  We need people to get on-board and support us through our illnesses.  No one really talks about mental health, it’s too stigmatised, we can’t do it alone, yet no one cares.  How often have you heard those words?  We want to change the world.  We want to raise that all important awareness for mental health so that people will not suffer as we have suffered.  Don’t we?

But how do we do that?

We start by making our bed.  Check out the video below and see what William H. McRaven has to say about that.

Time to Change the World

So do you want to change the world?  Do you really want to change the world?  I think we’ve got everything we need right there to change the world.  Here’s what I took from it:

  1. We need to start by making our bed.  Accomplish the little tasks, that way we will have the courage and the determination to accomplish the bigger tasks but, either way, we will have accomplished something.  No matter how small the accomplishment seems, it is still an accomplishment.
  2. Lift others up.  Encourage them, support them and raise them up.  Empower them to make the change and they will go and make that difference.
  3. One voice became two.  Two voices became three.  So on and so forth.  If we raise our voices together, we can become unstoppable.  Together, we can make that difference but only together.  Only together.  We need to stand as one, joining in that song together so that we can change the world.
  4. Accept that you will fail and that you might fail often.  You will go through relapses.  As long as you don’t stay at rock bottom, you can survive.  You can get through.  It’s alright to fail, as long as you don’t stay there.
  5. Finally, hold onto hope.  As hard as it can seem, hope is there, despite what our mental illnesses tell us.  Hold on, pain ends.  Hope and you can achieve.
The Starfish

I want to leave you with a little story that I think fits in quite nicely here.

Once upon a time, there was an old man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing.  He had a habit of walking on the beach every morning before he began his work.  Early

one morning, he was walking along the shore after a big storm had passed and found the vast beach littered with starfish as far as the eye could see, stretching in both directions.

Off in the distance, the old man noticed a small boy approaching.  As the boy walked, he paused every so often and as he grew closer, the man could see that he was occasionally bending down to pick up an object and throw it into the sea.  The boy came closer still and the man called out, “Good morning!  May I ask what it is that you are doing?”

The young boy paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide has washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves,” the youth replied. “When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”

The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”

The boy bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”

adapted from The Star Throwerby Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)

Let’s go change the world!

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A Very Mental Christmas – Day 6

Christmas Day

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A Potato, An Egg and Coffee

It’s a random title for a post, that’s for certain, but it’s a story that I wanted to share with you.  I promise it’ll make sense!  Trust me, it isn’t about my lunch – I don’t cook myself a potato very often, I’m allergic to eggs but the coffee sounds good – it’s actually a story that I read on Facebook a little while ago.  Check out the video below:

A Potato, An Egg and Coffee
Which one are you?

More often than not, we go through really trying times in our lives.  This is particularly noticeable when we’re struggling with our depression at the same time.  We find it easier to pick out the difficult times.  What can we do about it though?

We could try and be like the potato and try and be strong so we avoid the weakness but in the end the struggle will grind us down until we go soft.

We could be like the eggs, feeling fragile and letting the water make us harder, but we don’t want to harden ourselves to everything around us, making ourselves difficult to reach or distant.

Instead, we need to be like the coffee.  When we encounter those trials of life, we should allow ourselves to be shaped by them, just like a butterfly or a diamond does.  Take it as an opportunity and seize it to turn it into something new!  You will grow from it and emerge stronger because of it.

Take care guys!

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The 3 Biggest Problems with Mental Health Today

3 Biggest Problems with Mental Health Today!

Mental health is such a stigmatised topic in today’s society.  While it’s talked about more, there are still many problems facing it.  Not enough awareness has yet been raised, nor has there been enough support for it over the years.

We need to change that.

Check out the 3 biggest problems for mental health below!

Over to you!

What do you think?  Drop us a comment and let us know!  Or join the discussion on Facebook or Twitter!

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Pills and Blades – the Book!

Pills and Blades – the Book

Well, I’m very excited to announce that, after some poking and editing, my first book Pills and Blades is ready to be published!  It’s been a bit of an arduous journey, especially when things go wrong with the paperback publishing, but it’s all sorted now.

Check out this video where I was Live on Facebook to tell you all about my book!

Alex is Live to talk about his new book, Pills and Blades!

Posted by Pushing Back the Shadows on Monday, 31 July 2017

Fancy Purchasing?

Why not purchase the book?  It’s available in paperback on Amazon or on Kindle, also on Amazon.  Moreover, it’s had some great reviews!  Check these out:

“A raw and honest depiction of such a widespread taboo subject and how it can affect a person both inside and out. Pills and blades is a no holds barred tale of a mans struggle with mental health and his continuous attempt to overcome it. Definitely an author to look out for.” – Amazon Customer, 5 Stars

“Short and gripping is how I’d describe it. This is no glamorous book with a happy ending: it’s a real adventure that Alex has shared with the world and he has a way of speaking to his audience. It’s sad and gritty and gets to the point of mental health in a way that we all need to hear. I was sucked into his story and happily joined him for a ride. It’s a well told story with an important message. I highly recommend it.” – Ara, 5 Stars

“Pills and Blades is a brutally honest account of one man’s journey as he’s come to terms with his depression, how it’s affected him and how his experiences have driven him to speak out about the stigma and struggles he’s faced.  Beautifully written, this book shines a light on the rising prevalence of mental health issues and how even in this modern world of connectivity and information, sufferers are often isolated and disconnected because people are too afraid to start the conversation.  An excellent read that will certainly get you thinking.” – Amazon Customer, 5 Stars

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Insomnia – My Sleepless Battle

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A Question For the Forum

The Transcript

Hi everyone, Alex from Pushing Back the Shadows here.  Today I just wanted to highlight the question that’s been posted on our community forum.  It was posted by Jeremy, who did an interview for us last month concerning his depression and how it affects him on a daily basis, some of the things that he uses to cope.  So, if you haven’t checked out his interview then have a look at it.  It’s on the blog and you can also access it through Facebook and Twitter as well.  Definitely worth a look as it’s definitely well worth the read!So Jeremy has said, mostly for guys who struggle with depression: “Was there ever a time when a friend, family member or acquaintance just seemed to ‘get it’ when you had an opportunity to talk about your depression?”

If you haven’t already checked out the forums then do go and have a look.  Leave a response, it would be great if we could get the discussion going.  The forums are a chance for you to have your say in things, to really get involved, give your opinion, support each other and really form a little community, as such, so you can support each other.  We have three current topics going.  The first one is General Discussions, which is where Jeremy’s discussion can be located.  Another is Friends and Family Support, so if you do support someone with depression and want to share some of your top tips, some of the things you’ve found help, don’t help, etc then please go on and share them with the people who are already logged into the forums now.  It would be very beneficial because it’s all very well me giving my views but it would be far better to have some of your views as well.

If you haven’t already subscribed to the forums, it’s very easy.  All you do is click to register, it’ll ask you for a couple of details – your name, your email address – and you’ll be logged in, ready to go.  It would be great if you could get involved, just support each other through the tough times, whether you’re living with depression, anxiety or insomnia or whether you’re not, whether you’re on the other side of the coin – friends and family – who are trying to support people going through those dark times.  It would be really good if we could have your input.

So, as I say, just double check, go on to the blog itself, go on to the forums, check to see what content’s on there and if you could leave a reply to Jeremy’s question, that would be brilliant.  Or if you’d like to post new questions, start new discussions, that would be great as well.  Also, if you haven’t already subscribed to the blog, you can subscribe: it’s just really simple, you just put your email address in and you’ll get all the latest updates, notifications and everything else with the blog itself.  And feel free to connect with us through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Tumblr and all that social media stuff.  I would really really appreciate it!

So that’s all from me for today, hope you’re having a really good day and I shall catch you next time.  Take care!,

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