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Dearest Someone,

Demi Lovato is Confident
I’m a huge fan of Demi Lovato, I have been since the start of the Camp Rock era, aaaaall the way through to this new ‘era'(so-to-say) that she is currently on the brink of. Demi absolutely knocks it out of the park every time she releases something, she is a fantastic vocalist and an ace musician. She is also very honest about her past, and her wellbeing. Which, in my opinion is going above and beyond – Demi was never forced to speak out about her mental illness, she decided to do so herself. And that’s incredibly inspiring. 

For most people living with mental illness it is widely known that it can be difficult to speak out about your struggles. What I think people sometimes forget is that Demi did this on a huge scale – for me even speaking to my friends and family at times is terrifying…

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Dearest Someone,

If your experience of mental illness (and life in general I reckon) is anything like mine then you’ll be familiar with the sense of feeling like you don’t actually know yourself. Even though you are probably (like 100%) the only person who truly knows you – you also feel that at times others might know more about you as a person than you do…

I am so so good at comparing myself to others, but I am always a pro at creating illustrious perceptions of what others think of me. I’ve managed to convince myself that like 99.9% of the people I’ve met over the past few years are all judging me, that they all think negatively of me, or that they are doing everything in their willpower to get away from me. (Or they are just trying to please me so to not upset me or make a scene…) 

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PlanningI’ve a lot to be thankful for lately in terms of my Dearest Someone, mental health blog. I recently blogged for Time to Change and in addition to this I’ve been asked by several other campaigns etc. to ‘guest blog.’ So alongside planning for these posts I’m also in the process of planning new stuff for my Dearest Someone, blog. The nature of my blog posts via Dearest Someone, is often unplanned and solely focused on what I’m feeling at that present. However in the past I have posted several pre-planned posts about certain topics (such as the very popular post concerning the matter of Suicidal Thoughts). I’ve found that when blogging about mental health it’s okay to write as and when, I find that’s the best way for me to clearly portray my own experiences and to engage with current debates.

My most recent post Big Decisions: What are your tips? was an impromptu post I’d written this afternoon and has already received interaction over on Twitter. I find that blogging ‘naturally’ is a great way to fight stigma, and to add to the discussion of mental health. I personally think it keeps things honest and ‘human.’ That being said I have found myself planning ideas for the blog this afternoon (I have a lot of things that I want to talk about!) I think discussing mental health is so very important, and I want to do this in the best possible way. Which is why I’m currently planning new concepts and ideas that will open up the discussion to people further afield. I was very overwhelmed and humbled by the interaction with my Time to Change blog, and it’s opened my eyes to how powerful blogging can be. So… keep a look out for any new posts via Dearest Someone, and enjoy the lovely picture of my not-so-helpful cat Smokey (who was ‘helping’ me plan things.)

Adios!

On Friday Time to Change (the national campaign to end mental health discrimination) published a blog I have recently written for them. Read more about it via. Dearest Someone,

Dearest Someone,

Time to Change

I’m feeling very overwhelmed, blessed and ridiculously pleased… so much so that I haven’t blogged via Dearest Someone, because I’ve been busy responding to everyone via Twitter and Facebook!

On Friday (17th July 2015) Time to Change, the national campaign to end mental health discrimination published a post that I’d written specially for their #StoryShorts campaign. Getting involved with Time to Change wasn’t a tricky decision at all, I feel very strongly about the work they do, and have often sought information from the campaign – and I regularly keep up to date with the blogs!!

My post: ‘Why I am sharing my PTSD story’ was shared across the campaigns social media streams as well as on the national website. I am still in slight disbelief at the incredible response from people who read the blog, loads of you got in contact via Facebook to say thank-you, and share your…

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Recently I was very fortunate to be shortlisted for The Russell Joslin Award by the BBC, an award in memory of Russell Joslin, ‘a much-loved broadcaster and journalist in the region.’

‘The ambition with this award is to provide an opportunity to gain a stepping-stone into the broadcasting industry to a deserving candidate who shares Russell’s passion for stories and commitment to local journalism.’ (BBC, 2015)

Unfortunately, I wasn’t the final recipient of the award, however I must express how grateful and humbled I was to be shortlisted, along with seven other deserving individuals. The background to the award is heartbreaking, yet is something which really spoke to me. Russell’s story has been widely publicized in the past; after struggling with mental health issues it was reported that sadly Russell lost his battle and took his own life.

Radio for me is a huge part of my life, but so is discussing mental health. And this opportunity presented me with the chance to find new ways to portray stories that add to the positive representation of mental illness.

The concept of the award is to allow for an individual to gain the opportunity to cover local journalistic stories. Spending four weeks at a local BBC Local Radio Station (West Midlands, Coventry and Warwickshire, Shropshire, Hereford and Worcester or Stoke) as well as two weeks in the newsroom of Midlands Today / Inside Out in Birmingham.

Though I am of course gutted that I didn’t receive the award – I know that I already have a wealth of experience within the radio industry, and the offers whom were shortlisted really aspired to gain further insight and hands-on experience! I was also really really impressed with the other candidates – their concepts and passion reminded why I love the creative industries so much! 🙂 I also had an absolute blast at BBC WM, the team were really lovely, and I’ve made some new friends (both candidates and staff – so, pros and cons aye?)

Being true to myself though… radio isn’t the driving force behind my work, its the portrayal of stories, the crafting of peoples’ experiences and being able to present individuals with a way to express their thoughts and adventures. That to me is what makes radio so fun, it’s the foundation in which radio (or TV) is built upon. I am fascinated by stories, but I have already trained in radio – so I’m already armed and ready with the requisite skills – and my intentions for the near future are to continue making and creating texts’ that demonstrate my passion! (Which currently is Dearest Someone, – and let me tell you… I absolutely love managing and running this site!)

This all sounds rather romantic haha, but I really have been inspired by the guys at the BBC. 

Find out more about the award here: https://audioboom.com/boos/1962524-the-russell-joslin-award (via. BBC Radio Shropshire).


My background:

Discovering and presenting stories to the world is something that I’ve always enjoyed doing. During the process of working on an audio documentary project entitled ‘Boscastle: 10 Years On’ I was diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, undeniably I have dealt with a lot – however I chose to blog about my experience, in order to make sense of it all and to speak to others. I have been very overwhelmed by the response my blog received, and I continue to blog regularly about my experience with Mental Health and keeping the discussion of Mental Health ‘Human.’ My Blog, Dearest Someone, strives to give a human feel to a topic that is often perceived as a taboo matter – this is something which I really find passion in.

I find passion in uncovering stories, yet presenting them in a way that has feeling, and others are able to relate. I find great comfort and excitement through my Dearest Someone, blog however I also blog personally – about my everyday life (maybe slightly banal compared to the mental health blog!) I like to explore, and document my adventures. In the future I wish to continue working in a role that allows me to explore and uncover stories, and possibly become an advocate for mental health (primarily PTSD – as it’s not just members of the Armed Forces who struggle with this!)

Russell Joslin

I wanted to call this post ‘Sir blogs a lot’s but I know I will most definitely wake up in the morning regretting that ha!

Basically the jist of things is… I’ve blogged a fair amount recently but I’ve been more active over on my other blog (Dearest Someone) – I’m on my Kindle so I’ll add the link in for it later!

I love writing, I really do – English was pretty much my favourite subject throughout school and I still love acting like a wordsmith now. Having a job as a copywriter is great, I love it and studying for my Masters is great as it’s pure theory so I get to write a lot of words. (In a far less colloquial manner ha!) I also love all the production stuff I do (radio, events managing etc.) With this blog (Ella Robson.WordPress.com) I’ve always tried to blog about events, activities and all the production stuff I’ve done (with posts concerning my MA work too).

I also upload poetry every now and then – writing poetry and songwriting is one of my main ways of dealing with stress and letting off steam, so sometimes it’s scary to share that stuff ha!

I guess the point of this post is to just make some noise on this blog for a change! I have a lot of stuff to blog about that’s happened for me professionally over the past few months – but I needed to focus on my other blog for a while (blogging about post traumatic stress requires a lot of energy and careful attention!)

I’ve been trying to figure out the extent in which I delved into sharing my story on the Dearest Someone blog – as I am passionate about discussing mental health, but ya know all the standard stuff about ensuring it doesn’t affect my well-being too much and all that!

I am very fortunate that my colleagues, friends and those whom I work for are highly understanding and supportive of my mental health and wellbeing. I think I have been very open about my experience with PTSD and despite not plastering my name all over my blog posts I know that all someone has to do is Google Dearest Someone or read my other blog posts to discover that I am the author and that I am dealing with PTSD. Mental health stigma is a frequently discussed issue and I worried that if I was to openly discuss my experience on this blog then it would put off any prospective employers – but with the supportive boss I currently have and the wonderful people I work with I realise that I shouldn’t be afraid of sharing my story.

Post-traumatic stress disorder absolutely 100% sucks – but it isn’t something that defines me as a person, and it certainly isn’t something that makes me any less of a person. I’ve broken bones in the past – something which has happened because of an unfortunate event – the same way that my PTSD happened – as a result of unfortunate events.

One thing I’ve always tried to do is not let my PTSD affect my work – it’s hard and it means having to be ridiculously strong but I’ve been offered so many incredible opportunities recently that I would hate myself if I let PTSD get in the way. However, just because I can do ‘cool’ things or I can be happy and enjoy things doesn’t mean I’m still not dealing with PTSD – having a perspective like that is essentially the same as having the attitude that someone with a broken wrist isn’t allowed to go and enjoy themselves around their friends!

This isn’t a rant for me – it’s more a response to the interactions and blogs posts I’ve stumbled across as a result of my Dearest Someone blog – I’m incredibly lucky and I really do feel strongly about raising awareness and a greater understanding of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder!

I’ve rambled a lot, and now I’m off to sleep!

http://dearestsomeone.wordpress.com