Rhi’s Book Review Series: We’re All Mad Here: The No-Nonsense Guide to Living with Social Anxiety.

Hello, lovelies!

Here is another book review of mine, which I thought I would share! My dear friend, Claire, has recently published her own book! Not only has she written about her experiences with living with mental health issues, but also about how she has learnt to manage with how her mind works.

I have come across many books in my time about mental health, some of which I have loved and others that I have not because I have found I have not clicked with the deeper connection of the writer. I can honestly say (And I can assure you I am not being biased) that this particular mental health book is probably one of the best that I have come across to date! You all know that I very much have a massive passion for Literature and books.You all also know that I definitely speak my mind when it comes to whether I agree with what a writer is trying to convey. Claire does this beautifully!

As a fellow anxiety disorder sufferer, I can certainly relate to Claire’s experiences and the many struggles that have to be overcome before recovery can start to occur. However, I would say that this book is not just for those struggling with their mental health, but also for those people who may know someone who is struggling or generally just wants to gain more knowledge about mental health and why it is so important for us all to support each other.

The book also can connect with both those who have a love of reading and those who do not. ‘We’re all Mad here’ does not have a massive amount of pages, so it is something you can read in about a day and not have much of an issue with having space in your bag to put it. Furthermore, it balances the right amount of serious and humour aspects, which in my opinion helps readers to connect with the book and the writer; making it extremely difficult to put down!

I obviously do not want to give away the key bits that are in the book, but I will say that you will not regret reading it.

To buy this wonderful piece of Literature, you can get it here!

If you would like to see Claire’s interview on ITV’s ‘This Morning’ with Phil and Holly, you can find it here.

You can also follow her on Twitter, her blog,  and Instagram.

See you all soon and enjoy the book!

Much love,

Rhi. X

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Mental Health Therapy- Part 2.

Hello, everyone!

Hope you’re all well! Yesterday, I had my second therapy session. For those of you who have not got round to reading my first post, you can find it here.

Not going to lie, the therapy session was extremely intense, but in a positive way. I certainly learnt a large amount about myself and that means that I am starting to learn why and how my mind thinks and works! Not only this, but I began a specific type of therapy called CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.) For those of you who are not aware of what it is or have not experienced it, it is a type of therapy that challenges the way a person thinks and try to find solutions to block those unhealthy thoughts and behaviour that may come with it. CBT is commonly used for people suffering from anxiety disorders or/ and depression, which I both suffer from.

Through this, my therapist started to work with me with relaxation tools to try and help me prevent panic attacks when they arise, as well as teaching me tips on how to cope when in a situation that I am not comfortable with. I found these tips very useful, but obviously I will only be able to see if they work by putting them into practice.

Regarding the things I have learnt about myself and my mind this week, there is actually quite a lot! Not only did I realise that not only am I suffering from depression, as well as generalised and social anxiety disorders, but I am also suffering from a panic disorder. I am a bubble of anxiety, ahaha! On a serious note, this does explain a lot and even though it is a scary concept, I am glad that I can finally explain why I feel some of the feelings I do and why I suffer from panic attacks so often.

I also came to the realisation that I definitely have attachment issues, which is one of many causes for why I suffer so strongly from mental health issues. Furthermore, there are many other branches and triggers which are causes of my deteriorated mental health, and that’s okay! It is quite alarming, but it is also a relief that there are reasons and I can finally start to find them. Recovery is an intense, but interesting path, and it is making me realise that I am not ‘crazy’.

I hope this progress continues in the next session.

On a side note, I sent of my university application off this week and have already received offers for 2 of my 5 choices, yay!

Much love,

Rhi. X

 

The concept of death absolutely terrifies me.

Hello, lovelies!

I have always been extremely nervous about the concept of death and what is next after you take your last breath. I learnt a while back from my Psychology teacher that when we are children, we all go through a stage where we are very anxious and fearful about death and the feeling of the unknown. I remember very clearly that when I was 7 years old, I became terrified about it and leaving all those I loved behind. Some of it would have been because that is one the parts of growing up, but other stuff also occurred around that time, such as losing one of my bestfriends,  which I think also might had triggered my fear.

Many of us are able to ‘grow out’ of this intense fear and usually do not think about it. For many years, I believed that this had become the case for me and there was nothing to worry about. However, I have found that as I have reached my late teens, this fear has returned.

We all have different views, regarding what happens after death. As someone who believes in spirituality, I hope that there is life after death. I have found times though when thoughts of ‘What if?’ have creeped into my mind. A fear of death and lack of reassurance about what happens afterwards tops up the anxiety that I already suffer from on a daily basis. I have a few friends who also have this intense fear, and trust me, it is an absolutely horrendous feeling. You are given life to use it as you want to and I think the most terrifying bit about it is that it could end at any moment. I like to have reassurance and a definite answer about what is going to happen next. You can never get that with life or death.

I have found that having a fear of death is a subject which we deep down known is common, yet it is never actually really spoken about. I completely get that, because sometimes talking about our fears can possibly make it worse, but we also have to consider that flipping the coin and talking about fears can set a sense of comfort.

It is okay to be scared. Like mental health,  a lot of people seem to think that you should not speak about your issues to others. The reasons for that differ for each person, but I definitely think it has a link to fear. This feeling of being scared is normal and if you want to speak about the worries or fears you have, you damn well should feel comfortable to do so! There is absolutely no weakness in being scared.

Much love,

Rhi. X

 

 

Mental Health Therapy- Session 1.

Hello, darlings!

As promised, I have decided to start a mini series that updates you all about the therapy that I currently am having for my anxiety and depression. Getting help for mental health issues is still very much a taboo subject, and as a mental health activist, I feel like it is only right to help dismiss that stigma and encourage others to get help.

I was absolutely bloody terrified about my first session, because I did not know what to expect and what the outcome would be. However, I found that I had been matched with a very lovely counselor who was very empathetic and listened fully to what I was saying. I was made to feel very comfortable! 

I found that during the session when I was asked questions, my answers to them just flowed out like a steam train and I felt unable to stop. I did get rather emotional, which I expected would occur. This week was a basic assessment of how I was feeling and how/why my mental health  has deteriorated so much. My next session shall be when things get down to the nitty gritty. I know that having these sessions shall be difficult, but I hope that there will be some progress in finding out what is causing my issues and find some way to improve how I am thinking.

IF I find that talking therapy is not helping or is not at its best on its own, I shall certainly be looking into medication which is another option that can help me cope, though trying talking therapy on its own first is important! Talking therapy may end up not being right for me, and that’s okay because it does not work for everyone, but at least I have taken that step forward in getting help and support. It is interesting that my therapist can already find connections to why I am suffering from mental health issues; some factors I did not think before the session would link to it. If anything, having these sessions may allow me to learn more about myself- Something we all have to learn and talk about in order to progress.

  • Yesterday’s session has made me emotionally drained and fragile today and I will probably feel like this fir the next few days- Something I had been warned of before I started the session by several people I know who are going through the same things, as obviously I am having to talk and think about very personal stuff and what I believe is going to be the best way forward for myself and my mental health.

I have said this many times before and will continue to do- Please do not think you are weak for asking for help. If anything, it makes you exceptionally strong! I am so glad that I am finally recieving help and support through loved ones, my therapist and GP. 

Much love,

Rhi. X