What is Mental Health?

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The first step to accepting and understanding Mental Health is to know what it is. This is a journey and post we’ll learn together.

Simply put it’s the psychological and emotional well-being of a person.

This is what MIND say about MH:

In many ways, mental health is just like physical health: everybody has it and we need to take care of it.

Good mental health means being generally able to think, feel and react in the ways that you need and want to live your life. But if you go through a period of poor mental health you might find the ways you’re frequently thinking, feeling or reacting become difficult, or even impossible, to cope with. This can feel just as bad as a physical illness, or even worse.

Some of the statistics regarding MH as according to the Mental Health Organisation are as followed:

  • In England women are almost twice as likely to be diagnosed with anxiety disorders as men.
  • In 2017, 5,821 suicides were recorded in Great Britain. Of these, 75% were male and 25% were female.
  • Suicide is the most common cause of death for men aged 20-49 years in England and Wales.
  • 1 in 6.8 people are experience mental health problems in the workplace.
  • Evidence suggests that 12.7% of all sickness absence days in the UK can be attributed to mental health conditions.
  • 1 in 8 adults in the UK have experienced suicidal thoughts or feelings because of concerns about their body image.

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Learning these numbers was shocking. Especially the ones relating to Work Life. 1 in 6.8 people is the one that hit me. At work there is 7 of us in our team. Which means one of us is likely to experience something. But due to the stigma attached to MH, people do their best to hide it from the world. Which isn’t healthy at all. There is not shame in admitting you’ve lost a step or two.

I often think this about Work, but it could also be applied to Life I guess. “It’s such a easy thing, but it’s made complicated by people and their actions. If everyone was honest and easygoing there wouldn’t be a problem” If people weren’t afraid to open up, or if people were accepting of MH and didn’t look at it with disgust or horror the world would be a healthier, happier place.

The stats are horrific and as a society and race we need to make a change. We can’t have this level of suffering, this level of uncomfortableness. Change is needed. Remove the Stigma and live our best lives to our fullest potential.

 

 

 

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January Round-Up

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So the new year rolled in, the Christmas decorations went down and the bank balance looked scarily low. January is notorious for being a LONG month, it’s dark, you are constantly tired and a break or holiday usually seems like a long way off.

I’ve decided to do a roundup post of what I have been up to in the month, let’s see how it goes. Came back to work after a week off which is always to short a break, getting back into the swing of things was tough but after a few days it was like we’d never been away – which I am unsure if that is a good thing or not.

 


This month I’ve noticed the light creeping back in. The nights are getting lighter, spring is on its way. But the snow is coming too. Constantly on Snow Watch waiting for that miracle 3ft downpour that leaves us stranded at home.

In the motivational push of January in an attempt to avoid the January Blues I joined a gym again. With the intention to get fitter, build some muscle back and just become a better person. Which I have loved – getting back into that routine, working out and pushing myself.

This can go hand in hand with my latest TV / Celebrity Influencer obsession. Which is Ant Middleton and S.A.S Who Dares Wins. I’ve always wanted to watch the show but never got round to it until this new season started. Something within the show, the speeches, tasks and activities clicked inside me. I am not sure what it is; maybe the positivity, the way of thinking, the ideology behind it. Whatever it is Ant Middleton and his team are inspirational stuff. On the hype I purchased his book “First Man In” which was just like the show – Eye Opening. I am not a strong reader, but this book I couldn’t put down and finished within a week. Which in my eyes is an achievement. So maybe deep down something inside me has changed and I am looking to get the most from this change. Be that on here, in the gym or in my life.

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Caught a few films this month too. The best in my eyes was Spiderman – Into the Spiderverse. If you haven’t seen it I urge you to go and check it out. Everything about it was superb, fun and just an all round amazing watch – also Oscar Nominated. So fingers crossed. Though I did also watch Mary Poppins Returns which on the other hand was a bit . . . meh in my eyes. Sorry. Emily Blunt was as always amazing but the film was a bit deflated.

Also another highlight of the month is my Smile. Ever since I was a child I have had a mark on my front tooth, a little black spot. Dentists have always put it down as a knick, a mark, a hole that can’t be fixed. Just one of those things. Until I changed dentists and the first thing she said to me as I lay in the chair was – “we’ll fill that one!”. I was over the moon but also angry at the same time – this could have been fixed long ago but I was told one thing after another. But now I am smiley with a white set of gnashers.

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So overall not a bad month really. Stats are up, interactions are up. You guys seem to be loving what you read and see of me – which is always a plus. I challenged myself to beat last years stats; Jan 18 vs Jan 19 – and mid month I beat it, then I started pushing for beating my best month in 18. Smashed it. Then out of the blue I hit 1000 views in a month. Which was amazing, over the moon. Can’t believe it. I have YOU to thank for that and it’s been amazing, here is to next month. You ready?

As far as months go, it’s been a good start to the year for the blog and myself. Let’s keep it up.

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Blogger Recognition Award

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Happy Friday Boys and Girls. We’ve made it – the weekend is nearly here. I am going out tomorrow night for the first time since Christmas to celebrate my friends “Baby Daddy Shower” because why can’t men celebrate the joyous occasion as well.

I have to thank Paolo for nominating me – check his blog out HERE, his work and content is amazingly put together, such a good read and also just really nice guy who is mega supportive.


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THE BLOGGER RECOGNITION AWARD

So this award is basically an award made by bloggers for bloggers.  These awards are not so much awards in the traditional sense but rather a fun way to show other bloggers support and appreciation.  It’s also a nice way to get to know a bit more about some of the bloggers out there.  That being said here are the rules for this award:

  1. You have to write a blog post thanking the person that nominated you.
  2. Explain your story on how and why you started blogging.
  3. Share two general pieces of advice to other bloggers.
  4. Nominate fifteen other bloggers and let them know you’ve nominated them too.

Let’s get right to it then.


Why Am I Here!

The reason I got into blogging was, I wanted to make a parenting fatherhood blog, a place to document and writing about the trails of being a Daddy! But as we are currently not on the children conversation level that is a long way off – but I still wanted to start a blog. So I decided to change it from Parenthood to Adulthood – showcasing my life becoming an adult, dealing with bills and banks and buying new bedding.

Which is where we are now! Hello.


Blogging Advice

  1. Don’t be afraid to laugh or potentially be laughed at – this isn’t as mean as it might sound. I’m at a point in my life where I just generally don’t care what people think about things I say or do. When I was younger I used to constantly rack my mind with alternate situations where – “If I do this, those people will laugh” scenarios and that can be damaging to a personality and someone’s confidence I think. So I got out of that habit, but I still see it a lot today – people who are worried about what other people will think about them. This isn’t a good thing – which leads to my advice. Whatever you do, do it for the right reasons that you believe in. Don’t worry about what someone will say – there is 100’s of 1000’s of people in this world, at least one person will disagree or find a way to take offense and then will try to bring you down. Ignore that. Stay smiling. Do it for you! Not for them.

  2. Tweet till you can’t tweet no more – I have found Twitter to be the best platform to promote  my blog and to meet new friends and other bloggers. Interact with people, even if it starts as a little “Well Done” or “I do that too :)” it’s a start and gives you an in to start making friends with and contacts. These people will become your online community, friends and family. They are the best bunch of misfits, randomers and beautiful supportive people you could ever find. Trust me!

 

Now it’s time for the Nominations: The tough part because I have to find their addresses for each for each blog. . . . but that’s worth it. Check all of these out and I can’t wait to read your replies.

  1. Kerry – Kerrylifeandloves.com
  2. Alex – Alexandrarees.blog
  3. Anthony – DadaAndMonkey.co.uk
  4. Dave – TheYorkshireDad.com
  5. Milli – Milliberman.com
  6. Alex – YoungMummaLooks
  7. MJ – Mjw.wales
  8. Kelly – TheYorkshireFitGal.wordpress.com
  9. Jess – JessEatsAndTravels.com
  10. Abi – RamblingsOfABlonde.co.uk
  11. Lauren – BournemouthGirl.wordpress.com
  12. Jacob – Stylerblogs.weebly.com
  13. Claire – ThatMummaRocks.com
  14. Steph –DiaryofaBoringSoberBitch.com
  15. David – DadVWorld.com

Understanding Stroke.

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This is the post I have wanted to write for years but never found the power to do so.

Back in September 2013 my Nan (My Dad’s Mother) passed away from a sudden Stroke. It’s always been a bit hard to talk about, even when she comes up in conversation now days it still chokes me up inside. Let me start by saying I undoubtedly loved my Nan, she was such a happy, inspirational woman who would help anyone and she meant the world to me. In the summer of 2012 I lived with her while training for a new job as location made it the best option to do so. I think that time helped cement our relationship in so many ways.

The reason it’s hard for me to process and why this post is 5 years in the making is because I was the one who raised the alarm, the one who witnessed her have a Stroke right in front of me.

I walked into the block of flats and was told she’d just been take out for a belated Birthday meal by a group from the block and she might be having an afternoon nap. I walked into her flat and she was awake and watching T.V. – she stood up, said hello, gave me a hug and a kiss and then sat back down again. That was the moment it struck.

It was the most bizarre thing. She was fine, her loveable self but as soon as she sat down. She’d changed. The idea of a stroke went through my head but I didn’t want to accept it. I kept telling myself she was tired. She couldn’t speak and just looked at me lost – I thought give it a minute. She will snap out of it. I was asking her questions and trying to spark a conversation but with no luck. She patted me on the arm in a supportive reassuring way and I knew. I got up and rushed to find the block manager.

She lived in a retirement block where a manager overlooked everything and everyone. A place for the elderly who are still capable but looking to downsize. It’s a cute block with lovely people.

I find her having a cup of tea with the group that went out with my Nan. Which included her sister – my great-aunt. Struggling to string a sentence together I get the manager (Mary) to come check on my Nan. We rush back and she tries some response exercises to get a reaction from my Nan. I just sink back into the corner of the flat as Mary rushes off to call an Ambulance. She returns with the other block manager and my great-aunt who instantly goes into sister mode and tells her to stop being silly and to get up.

The paramedics get there, assess the situation and start to strap her into the chair to take her out. In that instant I learn so much about my Nan’s medical history that I never knew. To me she was always this strong amazing woman. Nothing could stop her. But to find out she has had falls and a small stroke before.

I didn’t know any of this. What is going? I’m now climbing into the wall. I really just want to wake up now.

We get to the hospital and the doctor has me sat in a little room explaining what is going on. Words like clot, brain damage and high blood pressure form a sentence but I’m still a wreck. He wants permission to start a procedure that will flush the clot on her brain, but there is a chance there has been too much bleeding and she will be left disabled. I remember thinking I can’t make that call. Of course I want them to save her and bring her back to the woman I knew but what about if things went wrong. I need my Dad or Aunt to decide. I can’t reach my dad and my aunt is at the airport about to fly out on holiday. I get her on the phone and just can’t string the words together.

The Doctor takes over and explains it all. She agrees to go ahead. But then it comes to light her blood pressure is too high to start and we have to wait.

Two days later on Friday 13th she passes away.


Losing a family member is hard, especially when its someone you care for so much but being the one to witness it is a whole new kettle of fish. Everyone kept saying just remember the good times, remember the last time you saw her – which worked for my sister and the family. But not so much for me.

The worst thing about it is I can’t ever talk to her again, introduce her to my GF, she’ll never meet my children or be there with a pot of tea as I walk in.


This is what hurts the most and so the Stroke Association has become a charity I support and follow with passion. I’d even love the chance to work for them to give anything I can back to them. I did a fundraiser for a Dry October a few years back and raised over £700 for the cause. I am also looking at doing the next fundraiser for the charity soon – but still deciding on what to do. As I feel as big as the charity is, it’s over looked with other causes and charitable organisations.

Here are the numbers and stats that you might not know about Stroke.

  • Stroke occurs approximately 152,000 times a year in the UK which is one every 3 minutes 27 seconds. 
  • Stroke kills TWICE as many women as breast cancer and more men than prostate and testicular cancer combined in a year. 
  • Stroke is one of the largest causes of disability – half of all stroke survivors have a disability. 
  • Stroke is the FOURTH single largest cause of death in the UK and SECOND in the world. 
  • For every cancer patient living in the UK, £241 is spent each year on medical research, compared with just £48 a year for stroke patient. 

Just let these sink in for a second. The second largest cause of death in the world is Stroke. Out of every horror in the world this is number two for deaths.

Stroke is a life threatening disease that is caused when blood flow to part of the brain is obstructed. There are two kinds of Stroke Ischemic and Hemorrhagic, the Ischemic is due to lack of blood and the Hemorrhagic is due to bleeding. Regardless of style they both lead to the same place and resulting in the brain not functioning as it should.

If this post does nothing else I hope it brings a small bit of education into your lives. It’s a horrific disease and it should be recognised more within society in my opinion. Help me raise awareness and bring these facts to light and to grow the support this charity has.

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All the facts I have used in this post come from the Stroke Association website (https://www.stroke.org.uk/). I have not been asked by the Stroke Association to write this or promote their work – this is a personal post looking to educate people of the seriousness of Stroke.