38 posts tagged “mental health”

9 mental health podcasts worth listening to

Posted December 20th, 2017 by

Podcasts are an easy (and usually free) way to stay on top of what’s new across a wide variety of topics — they’re kind of like internet radio on demand, and usually broken up into episodes that you can download on your computer, device or phone.

Below, we rounded up 9 podcasts focused on mental health that are worth checking out. While podcasts can act as complements to your mental health care plan, they’re not intended to be a substitute for therapy or medication.

 

Mental Illness Happy Hour

 

The New York Times described this podcast as a “a safe place in which he [the host] and his guests talk about their fears, addictions and traumatic childhoods.” This is a weekly podcast that features interviews with people from all walks of life and explores mental illness, trauma, addiction and negative thinking.

 

The Psych Central Show

 

This weekly podcast takes an in-depth look at topics related to psychology and mental health. Hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales discuss everything from online counseling and the toll of texting to dealing with narcissistic coworkers and more.

 

The Hilarious World of Depression

 

This podcast aims to tackle the topic of depression with humor. Hosted by veteran radio host John Moe, the show features a variety of guests, like author John Green and comedian Russell Brand, who discuss their experience dealing with depression — while adding in a few laughs.

 

Anxiety Slayer

 

This anxiety-relief podcast has been downloaded more than 4 million times. It features anxiety release exercises and actionable tools to help listeners “slay” their anxiety. Along with anxiety relief tips, co-hosts Shann Vander Leek and Ananga Sivyer also discuss topics like unwelcome thoughts, life-altering transitions, triggers and more.

 

The Anxiety Guy

 

Hosted by former professional tennis player Dennis Simsek, this podcast discusses life with stress and anxiety. Simsek, who’s had first-hand experience living with anxiety, shares what he’s learned and offers various options that listeners can explore to help manage their mental health.

 

Mentally Yours

 

Co-hosts Ellen Scott and Yvette Caster explore some of the weird thoughts we have by chatting to a mystery guest each week. They cover a range of topics across a variety of mental health conditions, and their candid discussions make for interesting listening.

 

The Struggle Bus

 

“The Struggle Bus is an advice show about mental health, self-care, and just getting through the damn day.” Co-hosts Katherine Heller and Sally Tamarkin answer listener-submitted questions about friends, family, work, mental health, love and just about everything in between.

 

The One You Feed

 

This podcast is hosted by two friends who say their show is “about how other people keep themselves moving in the right direction – how they feed their good wolf.” On the show, they cover topics like the effects of consumer culture, self-criticism and addiction.

 

The Dark Place

 

Host Joel Kutz describes his podcast as a “shame-free space where people talk about their struggles, difficult memories and what it’s like to live with mental illness.” Guests, sometimes listeners, share their experiences with mental illness and what they do to manage.

Have you listened to any podcasts that we missed here? Share your favorites in the comments.

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Treat yourself: 6 self-care tips for the hectic holiday season

Posted December 11th, 2017 by

The holidays are stressful enough for people living without illness. When you have a health condition, or care for someone who does, the hustle and bustle of this time of year – plus the sky-high expectations for a magical time – can be physically and emotionally draining. We’ve rounded up self-care tips to help you tend to your mental and physical health.

1. Take stock of your feelings. If you’ve experienced a lot of losses or changes in your life since last holiday season, it’s natural to feel grief or some extra stress this year. Acknowledge and express your feelings. “You can’t force yourself to be happy just because it’s the holiday season,” Mayo Clinic points out.

2. Connect with others if you’re lonely. If you’re feeling isolated, talk with a friend or family member, or find a local event to attend (such as a holiday concert or a volunteer/charity event, if you’re able). Also, touch base with your community on PatientsLikeMe and look for live-streamed concerts and events online (check out these 12 live-streaming apps) if your condition is keeping you at home these days.

3. Dial back expectations and plans. Be realistic about what’s possible for you this year. Sure, do the things that make you happy, but try to edit your usual holiday decorating, gift-giving, social and travel plans if you already have a sense that you can’t keep up (physically or financially) because of your condition. Talk with your most understanding loved one(s) and ask them to share with others that your plans and abilities might be a little bit different this year. Maybe a low-key gift swap or a holiday movie/takeout night is more your speed than your usual traditions involving travel or all-day cooking and entertaining.

4. Stick to a normal, healthy routine. As much as you can, try to keep your usual schedule, aiming for 8+ hours of sleep, regular physical activity (if that’s part of your routine) and a healthy eating plan (hint: avoid excessive alcohol and eat healthy snacks before parties and events so you aren’t as tempted to overindulge).

5. Take things one step at a time. Make a to-do list and stay in the moment to finish the task at hand. “If you’re making dessert for a work potluck, focus solely on that task,” Mental Health America advises. “Don’t think about what you need to do after, or what you have to do tomorrow. Just focus on the good smells coming from your cooking, and maybe even sneak a bite if it feels right. Trying to consider everything at once will only make you feel overwhelmed and stressed.” If you know that you feel better at certain times of the day, try to complete your tasks then.

6. Build in time for R&R. “Take time for yourself, but don’t isolate yourself,” the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) says. “Spend time with supportive, caring people … Listen to music or find other ways to relax.” Don’t feel guilty about taking naps and squeezing in activities that make you feel happy, such as these sensory ideas member Laura (thisdiva99) shared earlier this year.

Holiday blues stats and facts

If you’re experiencing the holiday blues, you’re not alone. A NAMI survey found that 64% of people say they experience the holiday blues and 24% say the holidays affect them a lot.

NAMI defines the holiday blues as “temporary feelings of anxiety or depression during the holidays that can be associated with extra stress, unrealistic expectations or even memories that accompany the season.” Additional factors may include less sunlight, changes in your diet or routine, and even over-commercialization.

If signs of the holiday blues – such as feelings of loneliness, sadness, fatigue, tension and a sense of loss – extend beyond the holiday season or make your existing clinical anxiety or depression worse, talk with your doctor or a mental health professional. “However, short-term problems must still be taken seriously,” NAMI says.

How do you deal with the holiday blues or seasonal stress? Join PatientsLikeMe today to discuss ideas with the community!

 

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