Staying Organized Through the Chaos

It is hard to believe that it has almost been 2 month since the last time I sat down and took the time to blog something.

I am sorry.

As a Wellness Coach and Mental Health advocate, it is my job to be consistent.

And I am sorry I have failed to deliver consistent content but I am not sorry for the fact that these last two months were focused on improving myself.

With that said, It is all about finding a balance…. something I suck at.

It is difficult to find a harmonious balance when you are trying to juggle work, personal obligations, relationships, school, starting your own business and your own mental health wellness.

Lately I have been in a state of equilibrium. Mainly, just going with the flow of life.

I am happy, content, and in-love….. with myself.

What have I been doing to manage my life? (besides blogging)

Goals list

A list of overall goals has helped keep my life organized. My current goals focus on:
work, school, starting a business, my mental wellness and relationships.

Daily task list

A list of daily tasks and obligations keeps me focused. A typical day may look like:
Gym, Study, Rest, Social Media, Blog, Rest, Self-discovery, Rest. (Rest periods are typically 15 to 30 mins in length, and sometimes I have to throw in annoying personal obligations (obviously) into the mix, like laundry and groceries). I use Google Keeps for creating Goal and task lists.

Prioritize the day

What is the most important thing(s) that needs to be done now?
What can wait? What can be delegated?
Sometimes things come up that may need to be prioritized into your day, like a family member or animal falling ill, or a friend needing someone to talk to. The most valuable piece of advice that I can give you is LEARN TO BECOME FLEXIBLE WITH CHANGE.

Establish a routine and schedule

Having a routine is an essential part of my mental physique.  It keeps me calm, enhances my focus, decreases my anxiety, and keeps me consistent. A routine is a sequence of actions that flow regularly. My daily routine typically looks like: Wake up by 8am, Post to social media, eat breakfast by 8:30-9am, hit the gym by 10am, shower, lunch by 1pm, study or read (to enhance my knowledge) for 2 to 4 hours (sometimes longer). dinner by 6pm, evening self-care (personal leisure reading, painting, journaling, hang out with friends), bed by 10pm (always). 

Self-Care

Self Care seems to be a growing trend that coaches are really emphasizing the importance of these days, why? Because it keeps you mentally fit. Self care doesn’t always need to mean extravagant things like pampering yourself with $200 spa days. It simply means to take time out of your day to focus on your personal needs, which can mean anything from personal hygiene, eating a nutritious meal, exercising, engaging in self’discovery journaling, to spending time with loved ones.

 

Most importantly, Keep life simple.

Stop over complicating it.

How do you organize your life? How do you keep consistent? Comment below

Rachel Page

 

You CAN; You WILL

The moment you limit yourself to your true potential, you lose out on all those opportunities that were possible.

There may be obstacles standing in your way, but it doesn’t mean you can’t succeed or achieve what your heart desires.

People do the impossible everyday. What separates them from the rest is the power of their minds. They believe they can so they do. Can’t, should, would, try, could, or I’m going to are not in their vocabulary. I WILL is what circulates in their consciousness. They plan and they do.

You Can and You Will.

A moment of silence

I apologize for my absence. I needed some time to recollect my thoughts. Although I still don’t have a complete hold on them, I will try my best. [LOL]

Overall, things have been wonderful. I can honestly say, I am almost back to my “complete self”. My life will feel satisfied when I start hitting the gym again, and increase my social interactions.

I have been having difficulty focusing my mind to produce anything concrete. I have so many ideas, goals, tasks, commitments, and responsibilities flooding my mind every minute, it makes it difficult sit down long enough to even type a sentence, before I have the urge to get up and do something else. I am learning to get a grip on this ADD.

Throughout the years, I have learned the skills necessary to overcome the constraints of my illness (ADD). What works is goal setting, prioritization, routine, scheduling, and simplicity. Beyond those basic principles, I think it’s important to also take care of yourself and know when it’s time to take a break and relax. Gift yourself some tender loving care. It speaks volumes when you learn to love yourself.

Is there anybody that wants me to post about something in particular?

Perhaps drop a comment about a particular situation you’re having difficulties with and maybe we can all help each other?

Let’s help each other.

Unhealthy | Healthy Relationship

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Some people are blessed to find their soulmate first date, at first sight. Whereas, others may have to undertake the agonizing interview process a bit longer.

As stated in my last blog [Learning from Love], I have had my fair share of learning the “harder” way.

I think one of the worst feelings for me is the feeling that comes with being ‘used’, or taken for granted. Obviously being cheated on left wounds on my heart, but I can say, without a doubt, that that man did loved me, and never used me.

Ironically, I was first oblivious to the thought of being used. Perhaps I was blinded by lust and oxytocin. It wasn’t until after I started to develop on uncomfortable and uneasy feeling that I decided to explore deeper into why I was feeling that particular way.

Hands down, it takes two people in a relationship to put in mutual effort; that is the only way a relationship will prosper. If he (or she) only does things for the relationship when it is convenient for them, or if they only focus on their needs, then there is a singular aspect to that relationship. If they truly care, are interested, and want you in their life, regardless of distance and time, they will find a way – not an excuse. No one should have to be ‘partially’ in anyone’s life. The lack of effort shows just how interested the person is, and just how unimportant you are in their life. You are not a priority. This is especially true if the person is “unable to commit” or avoids the conversation, and continues to see other people.

I would hope a whole bunch of red flags would be going off for you. Listen to that gut feeling.

You deserve to be treated with respect, honesty, loyalty and dignity.

Oddly enough, when someone is being used, they’re typically sacrificing their own needs for someone else in order to fill a void. Let that sink in for a moment.

Please – please – please, respect yourself enough to walk away, especially if you find that your relationship identifies with any of the unhealthy signs below.

You are deserving of so much more. You are enough!


Signs of an unhealthy relationship:

  • Criticism and ridicule

One or both people constantly criticize and put the other person down. Or they ridicule their partner in front of other people, trying to shame or embarrass them.

  • Lack of communication

There is a lack of open, honest, and loving communication between the couple. Conflict communication often devolves into anger and blaming. One partner or the other doesn’t feel secure in expressing feelings or self-doubts.

  • Loss of emotional intimacy

Emotional intimacy is the connection a couple has when the trust and communication between them fosters open sharing, vulnerability, and self-disclosure. Each partner feels completely loved, accepted, and worthy. When this is lacking, the relationship deteriorates into an empty, lonely existence for one or both partners.

  • Disengagement

Disengagement happens when one or both partners lose the willingness to invest time, energy, and emotion into the relationship. In these situations, there are generally few arguments, or the arguments are one-sided and met with passiveness from the disengaged person. Disengagement is often a sign the one person is ready to end the relationship.

  • Passive aggressive behavior

Passive aggressive behavior can manifest as non-verbal negativity, resistance, and confusion. It shows up as procrastination, helplessness, stubbornness, resentment, sullenness, or purposeful failure to handle requested tasks. This is childish behavior used in an attempt to manipulate and control.

  • Inability to forgive

Forgiveness is essential for the health and longevity of a love partnership. If one partner holds a grudge and can’t let go of past hurt or anger, neither partner will feel safe and intimate together. Of course forgiveness requires a sincere apology and consistent behavior change from the other person.

  • Codependent behavior

Codependency is a dysfunctional issue in which one partner enables and supports the negative behaviors or personality of the other. This could be a passive or active support of addiction, mental illness, immaturity, or irresponsibility. The focus is only on one person’s needs, ultimately leaving the other person resentful, angry, and wounded.

  • Substance abuse

Abuse of alcohol or drugs by one or both partners makes it impossible to have an authentic, healthy intimacy. The substance alters one’s behavior and personality, impairing judgement and self-control. As the abuse continues, it pushes the couple farther and farther apart.

  • Verbal abuse

When one partner uses verbal abuse, he or she is trying to shame, control, and manipulate the other. This emotional abuse takes the form of yelling, swearing, using threats, blaming, demeaning, and using biting sarcasm. This abuse damages self-esteem and makes intimacy impossible in the relationship.

  • Physical abuse

Physical abuse is the use of force and violent behavior in a way that injures or endangers someone. It is impossible to have a healthy relationship when one partner is the victim of abuse. This abuse can include hitting, biting, scratching, slapping, kicking, punching, shoving, use of a weapon, or forced sex. Physical abuse often builds gradually, beginning with emotional abuse. A one-time incident could be a warning sign of future abuse. The only solution in these situations is to let go and leave as soon as possible.

  • Disagreement on major values

You want children, but she doesn’t. He wants to buy a new car, but you want to save the money for a house. One of you has deep religious convictions, but the other doesn’t. Disagreeing on important life values can put a wedge between couples and become the source of ongoing discord.

  • Loss of respect

Respect shows that each partner understands the other, and they respect one another’s boundaries. When one partner stops respecting the other, it reveals he or she no longer supports the other’s values and needs. Love alone can’t hold you together without mutual respect.

  • Little physical affection

Studies show physical affection is a sign of relationship satisfaction and a good predictor of love in the relationship. Relationships that suffer from a deficit of affection will grow lifeless over time. Non-sexual physical touch feeds emotional intimacy and is necessary for the health of your relationship.

  • Dishonesty and secrecy

Dishonesty and secrecy are key reasons couples and marriages end up failing. Being dishonest or secretive with your partner – even about trivial things – reveals you don’t feel safe sharing with your partner or you legitimately have something to hide. Either way, you undermine the trust and respect of your partner when you lie or withhold.

  • Jealousy and insecurity

When there’s consistent jealousy or insecure behavior by one partner, it could reflect a lack of self-esteem and confidence in your value in the relationship. Expressing insecure feelings and jealousy when there’s no valid reason will only push your partner away and lessen their respect for you. If there is a real reason for these feelings, you need to face the problems head on with your partner.

  • Sexually focused

If your relationship is primarily focused on sex, then you have no real foundation for a lasting connection. Without emotional intimacy, affection, strong communication, trust, and engagement, the relationship will ultimately collapse

  • Narcissistic or controlling behavior

A person with a narcissistic personality is self-centered, seeks constant attention, considers themselves better than others, and believes they’re entitled to special treatment. Controlling people desire to be in charge, prove themselves, and get their own way by controlling their environment and the people around them. Neither personality is conducive to authentic connection and intimacy.

  • Poor money skills or values

When one partner is financially irresponsible or has poor financial skills, it will eventually cause resentment, stress, and anger for the other partner. Money is a major source of conflict between couples even when both people are relatively responsible. When the financial relationship is unbalanced, it profoundly impacts respect and trust between the couple.

  • Competitive

Competition in a relationship is a rivalry for supremacy, and it can develop over children, money, career success, or friends. Sometimes the need to upstage your spouse or partner comes from insecurity. These power struggles can destroy a relationship because one person has to be the winner and one the loser.

  • Overly involved extended family

Parents, siblings, or other relatives who become too involved in a couple’s lives can drive a wedge between them. If one partner doesn’t set appropriate boundaries with his or her family, the other partner will grow resentful and feel like they are no longer the priority.

  • Threats of leaving

Does your partner constantly threaten to end the relationship or suggest divorce? This is a form of verbal abuse and emotional control, putting you on insecure footing as long as the behavior continues. You will never feel safe or valued as a partner.

  • Trying to change you

Some people view their partners as a project to fix. They want to change their spouse’s appearance, behavior, or personality in order to make themselves feel more secure and in control. This reflects a lack of respect and unconditional love.

Do you see some of these signs in your love relationship? If so, it’s time to assess whether or not the relationship is causing more distress than happiness.

Credit: Live Bold and Bloom

Signs of a Healthy Relationship:

  • Trust

Trust means more than keeping secrets and being faithful. When you trust your partner, you feel a sense of safety and security in the relationship. Trust allows both partners to reach high levels of intimacy and closeness. It also allows you to set boundaries and know they’ll be respected, according to Young Women’s Health.

  • Mutual Respect

Healthy relationships have two partners who respect each other for who they are. Respectful behaviors include considering your partner when you make decisions that affect the relationship, treating your partner with love and kindness and refraining from saying hurtful things during disagreements.

  • Healthy Communication

Healthy communication helps partners solve disagreements in a respectful manner, but it can also help prevent disagreements altogether, says the University of Texas at Austin’s Counseling and Mental Health Center. That’s because healthy communication helps convey your needs, wants, opinions and feelings to your partner in a calm, assertive and loving way.

  • Absence of Physical Violence

In healthy relationships, one partner never puts his or her hands on the other partner in a violent or menacing way. If your partner uses physical violence, no matter how sorry he or she is afterward, that’s not the partner for you. Abusive partners act from a need to control and dominate, not from a respectful place of equal power.

  • Absence of Mental or Emotional Violence

Physical violence isn’t the only type of relationship violence, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If you’re in a healthy relationship, your partner should never call you names, intimidate you, control you or force you to perform sexual acts. These are types of mental, emotional and sexual abuse.

  • Independence

Your relationship with your partner shouldn’t be the only significant relationship in your life, according to the CDC. Healthy individuals have their own friends, family members, interests and opinions outside the relationship.

  • Common Interests

No two people have everything in common, but people in healthy relationships have an overall respect for each other’s interests and hobbies. Even when they participate in activities they’re not interested in, they enjoy spending time together.

  • Equal Power

Healthy relationships are an equal 50/50 split. No one partner is the boss. Both partners discuss family decisions and have equal say. This means both partners have input in everything from picking the Friday night movie to making the family budget.

  • Similar Goals

Even though new relationships don’t need to focus on long-term goals, more serious relationships can suffer when both partners aren’t on the same page. When one partner wants children, marriage or to live in a particular location and the other doesn’t, it can lead to resentments and unhappiness.

  • Support

Your partner may not like everything you do, but she should always support your choices. For example, she may miss spending time with you, but she will never discourage you from going to school or work. In a healthy relationship, your partner always has your back.

  • Healthy Sexuality

Both partners in a healthy relationship share similar sexual values. They feel safe enough to express their sexual desires and never worry that their partners will force them to do things they’re uncomfortable with. Healthy sexuality also includes agreeing on methods of contraception and prevention of sexually transmitted diseases.

  • Happiness

Even if your relationship is absent of unhealthy relationship characteristics, it doesn’t mean it’s right for you. At the end of the day, you have to feel happy about your decision to be with your partner. All couples have their rough patches, but overall, your relationship should make you happy more than often than not.

Credit: Living Strong

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Mental Health | Online Resources

Alcohol & Drugs

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

National Institute on Drug Abuse

Narcotics Anonymous

Alcoholics Anonymous

Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing (PROP)

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

Anxiety Disorders

National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality

Teen’s Health

Anxiety Disorders Association of America

Bipolar Disorder

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance

National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality

Teen’s Health

Borderline Personality

BPDVideo

National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality

Cutting

Teen’s Health

Self Abuse Finally Ends

Depression

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance

National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality

Families for Depression Awareness

Teen’s Health

American Psychiatric Foundation

BACCHUS

National Alliance on Mental Illness

HeadsUpGuys

Eating Disorders

Eating for Life Alliance

Teen’s Health

Overeaters Anonymous

National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders

National Eating Disorders Association

Eating Disorders Anonymous

Proud2Bme

Understanding Eating Disorders

Emotional Health

Let’s Erase The Stigma

Love is Louder

Half of Us

Veterans United

American Psychiatric Foundation

BACCHUS

Active Minds

OK2TALK

Make The Connection

Inspire USA Foundation

National Dialogue on Mental Health

Each Mind Matters

Befrienders Worldwide

Veterans Affairs Training

Veterans Affairs Mental Health Toolkit

Veterans Affairs Mental Health

Schizophrenia

Schizophrenics Anonymous

Schizophrenia.com

National Alliance on Mental Illness

Stress

Veterans United

Stress Management-HelpGuide.org

Teen’s Health

Suicide Prevention

American Association of Suicidology

Crisis Text Line

Didi Hirsch Manual for Support Groups for Suicide Attempt Survivors

The Dougy Center – The National Center for Grieving Children and Families

How to Talk to a Child about a Suicide Attempt in Your Family (Rocky Mountain MIRECC)

The Jason Foundation

The Jed Foundation

Lifeline Chat

Man Therapy

Mental Health America

My3 App

National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention

National Organization for People of Color Against Suicide

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Now Matters Now

Parents, Families, Friends, and Allies United with LGBTQ People (PFLAG)

Safety Planning Tools

SAVE

The Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide

StopBullying.gov

Suicide Prevention Resource Center

Teen’s Health

The Trevor Project

The Tyler Clementi Foundation

Veterans Crisis Line

Wounded Warrior Project


Additional Online Resources
and Organizations


FeelingBetterNow

FeelingBetterNow is a confidential, comprehensive mental health assessment tool and resource toolbox. Anonymously complete an assessment in 5 – 20 minutes and receive evidence-based resources for self-management and support for 13 most common mental health problems.
Visit website

Logit AI

Logit AI is an Intelligent Health platform that decodes how daily life impacts the body and how behaviors lead to overall health and wellness. Using scientifically validated questionnaires, wearables, and other life data, the platform analyzes and interprets this information to accurately forecast precursors to injury, illness, burnout and other ailments such as depression and anxiety.

Visit website

There For You

There For You is a quiz game encouraging you to ask those important questions you’re never sure how or when to raise. It is a simple social experiment, a fun way to break away from everyday conversations and engage in mindful conversations with the people we love. Some of the questions featured in the A.I.-powered app are for deepening bonds, others are designed to help deal with specific mental health issues, such as stress, depression, and low self-esteem.

Addictions

THE ADDICTION GUIDE

The Addiction Guide was created to provide the most comprehensive up-to-date information about various addictions and how to overcome them. It is not a treatment center and is an American organization (so you can only locate US based treatment centers on it), but there are lots and lots of useful links here none-the-less.
Their team is comprised of a diverse team of recovering addicts, healthcare professionals, and patient advocates.
NOTE – this is a US resource.

Visit website

EDGEWOOD HEALTH NETWORK

The Edgewood Health Network is an umbrella group of a few Canadian treatment centers including the Edgewood Treatment Centre in Nanaimo, BC, Bellwoods Treatment Centre in Toronto, ON, Waterstone Treatment Centre in Toronto, ON, and a host of outpatient clinics across Canada.

Visit website

Anxiety Resources

ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA

An American national nonprofit organization dedicating to promoting the prevention, treatment, and cure of anxiety, depression, and stress-related disorders through education, practice, and research. Additional anxiety resources such as books, websites, etc. available here.

Visit website

ANXIETY DISORDERS ASSOCIATION OF CANADA

A registered Canadian non-profit organization whose aim is to promote the prevention, treatment and management of anxiety disorders and to improve the lives of people who suffer from them. Additional anxiety resources such as books, websites, etc. available here.

Visit website

ASSOCIATION FOR BEHAVIORAL AND COGNITIVE THERAPIES

A multidisciplinary organization committed to the advancement of scientific approaches to the understanding and improvement of human functioning through the investigation and application of behavioral, cognitive, and other evidence-based principles to the assessment, prevention, treatment of human problems, and the enhancement of health and well-being.

Visit website

FREEDOM FROM FEAR

Freedom From Fear is a national not-for-profit mental health advocacy association established in 1984.

Visit website

MASTERS IN PSYCHOLOGY GUIDE

General information about a variety of anxiety disorders, including GAD, phobias, SAD, PTSD, and panic disorder, as well as links to additional online resources.

Visit website

NATIONAL CENTER FOR PTSD

The National Center for PTSD is dedicated to research and education on trauma and PTSD, working to assure that the latest research findings help those exposed to trauma.
Visit website

INTERNATIONAL OCD FOUNDATION

An American national nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness, support, and funds for research into OCD. Many OCD-specific resources available here.

Visit website

ANXIETY DISORDERS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA.

ADAA is an international nonprofit organization which helps people
to find treatment and prevention of anxiety, depression, obsessive-
compulsive and trauma-related disorders through education,
practice, and research. ADAA is unique because they bring together
clinicians, researchers of different fields to advance science and
treatment, even they engage those who suffer from these disorders
to work together toward the goals.

visit website

Autism & Autism Spectrum Resources

AUTISM SOCIETY OF CANADA

ASC puts special focus on providing information, referral and resources for parents and other family members who are seeking support for children with autism. This site also provides news, resources and links for youths and adults on the spectrum. An exciting feature of our new site is Autism Junction – a searchable Canada-wide Directory of ASD services and related supports.

Visit website

GLOBAL AUTISM COLLABORATION

A multinational nonprofit dedicated to Autism research, awareness, and information.

Visit website

CANADIAN AUTISM INTERVENTION RESEARCH NETWORK

The only Canadian web site dedicated to posting the best available evidence-based findings on autism.

Visit website

THE GRAY CENTER FOR SOCIAL LEARNING AND UNDERSTANDING

The Gray Center is a nonprofit which cultivates the strengths of individuals with autism and those who interact with them, and globally promotes social understanding. Their vision is to assist all individuals in the shared challenge of building and maintaining effective social connections.

Visit website

YALE CHILD STUDY CENTER DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES CLINIC

The Child Study Center is a department at Yale University School of Medicine which brings together multiple disciplines to further the understanding of the problems of children and families.

Visit website

ADHD

CADDAC

CADDAC (The Centre for ADHD Awareness Canada) is a resource for parents of children with ADHD to learn how to better care for and advocate for their children, as well as providing support for the parents themselves.

Visit website

Bullying/Anti-Bullying Resources

BULLYING EPIDEMIC

This bullying prevention blog has tips for recognizing and dealing with bullying in schools, workplaces, sports, and at home. Blog articles, bullying in the news, radio and TV interviews, infographics, and links to books and online resources encourage discussion and early intervention.

Visit the website.

CYBER BULLYING: THE DEFINITIVE GUIDE FOR EDUCATORS, PARENTS, FAMILY MEMBERS

A lengthy, comprehensive article detailing what cyberbullying is, signs of cyberbullying, and how to stop it.

Visit the website

AMANDA TODD LEGACY SOCIETY

A website dedicated to Amanda Todd that includes her story and a variety of anti-bullying and mental health awareness issues, as well as information about the Amanda Todd fund and additional related anti-bullying resources.

Visit the website.

NELSON THE GIANT

The Story of Nelson the Giant: A Heart as Big as His THUMP! is a unique story-song with a gentle approach to bullying awareness and prevention, through imagination, music, and art.

Visit the website.

WITS PROGRAM (WALK AWAY, IGNORE, TALK IT OUT, SEEK HELP)

A Canadian youth violence prevention program that has been implemented in over 400 schools in Canada and the US.

Visit the website.

STOP A BULLY

A Canadian bullying website that includes an incident-report section, which encourages students to report instances of bullying (important note – this website is NOT a crisis line), which are then forwarded anonymously to school principals.

Visit the website.

BEAT BULLYING

A charity that deals strictly with the issue of bullying and offers many resources on the subject, including a live-chat and digital helpline.

Visit the website.

STOP BULLYING

A US government-run website offering advice to parents, teachers, and students about various aspects of bullying, including preventative measures and coping strategies.

Visit the website.

PREVENTING BULLYING WITH EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE

Article outlining the role of teaching emotional intelligence as a harm-reduction technique in schools in an effort to reduce bullying behaviour.

Visit the website

PARENT SUPPORT CONNECTION

A GTA based organization that provides education and peer support to parents of troubled youth (adolescents to young adults).
Visit the website.

Borderline Personality Disorder

BPDWORLD

An international organization and website dedicated to raising awareness and reducing the stigma of mental illness, with a focus on borderline personality disorder.

Visit website

BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER – FROM THE INSIDE OUT

Borderline Personality Disorder information, support, Ebooks, Audios, Vidoes, A.J. Mahari’s Free BPD Inside Out Podcast, and over a decade worth of articles, an almost 300 blog posts.

Visit website

BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER RESOURCE CENTER

A wide variety of information on BPD including treatment options, stories, DVDs, signs & symptoms, and other information.

VISIT WEBSITE
BPD CENTRAL

An American website with a variety of information on BPD tailored towards families.

Visit website

NATIONAL EDUCATION ALLIANCE FOR BODERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER (NEA-BPD)

An American nationally recognized organization dedicated to building better lives for millions affected by Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).

Visit website

Depression

CENTRE FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION

Affiliated with Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), CSP offers training (community workshops and online courses) and has the largest English language library dedicated to the collection and dissemination of suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention resources.

Visit website

CHILD AND ADOLESCENT BIPOLAR FOUNDATION

The Balanced Mind Parent Network (BMPN), a program of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA), guides families raising children with mood disorders to the answers, support and stability they seek.

Visit website

MOOD DISORDERS SOCIETY OF CANADA

The Mood Disorders Society of Canada is a national, not-for-profit, volunteer-driven organization that is committed to improving quality of life for people affected by depression, bipolar disorder and other related disorders.

Visit website

CENTRE FOR ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH

Based in Toronto, the Center aims to advance understanding of mental health and addiction, and translate this knowledge into practical resources and tools that can be used in our own programs and in the broader community. Includes resources on understanding and preventing mental illness and caring for the mentally ill.

Visit website

LOCAL CANADIAN SUICIDE CRISIS CENTRES

Visit this site to find a Canadian crisis centre near you.

Visit website

Eating Disorders

NATIONAL EATING DISORDER INFORMATION CENTRE

The National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC) is a Canadian non-profit providing resources on eating disorders & weight preoccupation.

Visit website

EATING DISORDERS FOUNDATION OF CANADA

A Canadian nonprofit specializing in awareness, treatment, and research of eating disorders.

Visit website

HOPE’S GARDEN

A London, Ontario-based support group for those suffering from eating disorders, offering individual and group support sessions as well as resources for friends and family members of affected individuals.

Visit website

SHEENA’S PLACE
Located in downtown Toronto, Sheena’s Place is a non­institutional, non­residential centre where people with similar issues and concerns come together in groups to share experiences, thoughts, feelings, and coping strategies. There are groups for young adults, adults, mothers, women over forty and families, friends and partners of those with eating disorders.

Visit website

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ANOREXIA NERVOSA AND ASSOCIATED DISORDERS

An American nonprofit dedicated to the prevention and alleviation of eating disorders. Phone and email helplines offered here.

Visit website

NATIONAL EATING DISORDER ASSOCIATION (NEDA)

An American nonprofit that provides information on eating disorders and offers a toll-free helpline.

Visit website

LIFE WITHOUT ED: HOW ONE WOMAN DECLARED INDEPENDENCE FROM HER EATING DISORDER AND HOW YOU CAN TOO (BOOK)

Jenni had been in an abusive relationship with Ed for far too long. He controlled Jenni’s life, distorted her self-image, and tried to physically harm her throughout their long affair. Then, in therapy, Jenni learned to treat her eating disorder as a relationship, not a condition. By thinking of her eating disorder as a unique personality separate from her own, Jenni was able to break up with Ed once and for all.

Purchase this book

Gambling

ONTARIO PROBLEM GAMBLING HELPLINE

The Helpline provides information about and referrals to problem gambling counselling services, including telephone counselling and organizations such as Gamblers Anonymous and Gam-Anon.

Impulse Control Disorders

A.D.D. WAREHOUSE

An online store consisting of a variety of ADD/ADHD books, videos, games, training programs, and more.

Visit website

ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER ASSOCIATION (ADDA)

The Attention Deficit Disorder Association provides information, resources and networking opportunities to help adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder lead better lives.

Visit website

CHILDREN AND ADULTS WITH ATTENTION-DEFICIT/HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER (CH.A.D.D.)
In addition to an informative website, CHADD also publishes a variety of printed materials to keep members and professionals current on research advances, medications, and treatments affecting individuals with ADHD.

Visit website

CONDUCTDISORDERS.COM

“a soft place to land for the battle weary parent.” A forum-based site connecting parents with children who experience a variety of behavioural challenges.

Visit website


General Resources

BP CANADA MAGAZINE

This site profiles a Canadian magazine that offers hope and harmony for people with bipolar disorder. The magazine, which can be subscribed to, is produced by the same publisher as Schizophrenia Digest magazine.

Visit the website

CANADIAN CENTRE ON SUBSTANCE ABUSE

A non-profit organization working to minimize the harm associated with the use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.

Visit the website

ONTARIO THERAPIST DIRECTORY

Psychotherapymatters.com is a free, online directory of professional therapists in Ontario. We can help you quickly and easily find a counsellor, therapist, or mental health provider in your area who meets your needs and your budget.

BRITISH COLUMBIA PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION

An online tool to help connect you with psychologists in British Columbia, Canada.

Visit the website

CANADIAN HEALTH NETWORK

“Health info you can trust”. This site provides access to the resources of leading Canadian health organizations and international health information providers. Search the A-Z index or see the Mental Health section under Topics.

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CANADIAN INSTITUTES OF HEALTH RESEARCH

CIHR is Canada’s major federal funding agency for health research. Its objective is to excel, according to internationally accepted standards of scientific excellence, in the creation of new knowledge and its translation into improved health for Canadians, more effective health services and products and a strengthened Canadian health care system.

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CANADIAN PSYCHIATRIC ASSOCIATION

The national voluntary professional association for psychiatrists in Canada. This site links to CPA publications, programs and resources.

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CENTER FOR ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH (CAMH)

Based in Toronto, the Center aims to advance understanding of mental health and addiction, and translate this knowledge into practical resources and tools that can be used in our own programs and in the broader community. Includes resources on understanding and preventing mental illness and caring for the mentally ill.

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INKBLOT

Inkblot is a completely secure and confidential video counselling app. As an Inkblot user, all you need is a computer and a reliable internet connection. Clients are matched up with counsellors (registered psychotherapists, psychologists and social workers) based on their needs and preferences. Counselling takes place any time, any place and it’s affordable.

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INTERNET MENTAL HEALTH

A “free encyclopedia of mental health information”, this site, maintained in Canada, contains information and extensive links to global mental health resources.

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MINDYOURMIND.CA

Mindyourmind.ca is an award-winning, innovative Internet resource for youth who are looking for relevant information on mental health and creative stress management.

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MOOD DISORDERS SOCIETY OF CANADA

The Mood Disorders Society of Canada is a national, not-for-profit, volunteer-driven organization that is committed to improving quality of life for people affected by depression, bipolar disorder and other related disorders.

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MOODS MAGAZINE

This publication desires to fill the many gaps in knowledge and awareness of mood disorders for both individuals and in workplaces.

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NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR RESEARCH ON SCHIZOPHRENIA AND DEPRESSION (NARSAD)

An American organization which raises and distributes funds for scientific research into the causes, cures, treatments and prevention of brain disorders, primarily the schizophrenias, depressions, and bipolar disorders. The site contains resources for researchers and for the public.

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NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR MENTAL HEALTH

The mission of this American organization is to diminish the burden of mental illness through research. The site has sections for funding opportunities, for researchers, for practitioners and for the public.

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SCHIZOPHRENIA SOCIETY OF CANADA

This national Canadian organization is dedicated to alleviating the suffering caused by Schizophrenia. The site provides access to the publications of the Society, and links to provincial and local chapters.

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SCHIZOPHRENIA24X7.CA BY JANSSEN PHARMACEUTICALS

A great free online resource that may be useful for both patients and their caregivers. Hosted by Janssen Pharmacueticals, it includes a new short video and information about relapse. They also have a facebook community page for caregivers of schizophrenia.
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TORONTO ADVANCED PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION (TAPE)

TAPE, in affiliation with the Continuing Education Division of St. Michael’s College in the University of Toronto, provides learning opportunities for those working in any aspect of mental health and human services. The TAPE home page provides a link to their popular “Summer Institute” which is designed to provide an opportunity for caring professionals to learn from recognized experts in their fields of expertise. Some of the topics addressed in TAPE programs include: Maximizing Learning for Challenging Children; Critical Issues in Clinical Supervision; Trauma and Resiliency; and Enhancing Leadership Development for Social Agencies.

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WELLIN5: ONLINE COUNSELLING FOR WORKPLACE MENTAL HEALTH

Wellin5 is an accessible and easy to use online booking and resource platform that allows member users to access a wide range of online counselling / therapy and coaching services by certified and licensed service providers for improving all aspects of their mental health and wellness.

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WOMEN’S CLINIC FOR SCHIZOPHRENIA

The Women’s Clinic for Schizophrenia recognizes the special ways in which schizophrenia presents in women and the importance of careful management of psychological, cultural, and reproductive issues.

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GIVING TUESDAY CANADA

Giving Tuesday is a new Canadian movement for giving and volunteering, taking place each year after Cyber Monday. The “Opening day of the giving season,” it is a day where charities, companies and individuals join together to share commitments, rally for favourite causes and think about others.

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ONLINE SUICIDE HELP

An alternative crisis site that offers support via web chats and forums (not emergency care)

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THE SANDBOX PROJECT

The Sandbox Project’s vision is to help make Canada the healthiest place on earth for children and youth to grow up. Their ambitious but achievable goal is to make measurable progress against international health indicators within the next five years. In particular, they are focused on improving health outcomes with respect to injury prevention, obesity, mental health, and the environment.

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BELL LET’S TALK

Giving Tuesday is a new Canadian movement for giving and volunteering, taking place each year after Cyber Monday. The “Opening day of the giving season,” it is a day where charities, companies and individuals join together to share commitments, rally for favourite causes and think about others.

In 2010, Bell announced the launch of an unprecedented multi-year charitable program dedicated to the promotion and support of mental health across Canada. Over the next several years, this multi-million dollar initiative will support a wide range of programs that will enhance awareness, understanding and treatment of mental illness and promote access to care and research across the country.

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Mood Disorders

CHILD AND ADOLESCENT BIPOLAR FOUNDATION

The Balanced Mind Parent Network (BMPN), a program of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA), guides families raising children with mood disorders to the answers, support and stability they seek.

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Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)

An American nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of people who have mood disorders. Many of the DBSA’s staff live with a mood disorder. This site provides a variety if information with regards to living with a mood disorder.

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MOOD DISORDERS SOCIETY OF CANADA

The Mood Disorders Society of Canada is a national, not-for-profit, volunteer-driven organization that is committed to improving quality of life for people affected by depression, bipolar disorder and other related disorders.

MOODS MAGAZINE

This publication desires to fill the many gaps in knowledge and awareness of mood disorders for both individuals and in workplaces.

Visit the website

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Best Masters In Counseling – PTSD

A useful infographic with some quick statistics on PTSD.

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Schizophrenia

SCHIZOPHRENIA SOCIETY OF CANADA

A Canadian nonprofit working to improve the quality of life for those affected by schizophrenia and psychosis through education, support programs, public policy and research.
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SCHIZOPHRENIA24X7.CA BY JANSSEN PHARMACEUTICALS

A great free online resource that may be useful for both patients and their caregivers. Hosted by Janssen Pharmacueticals, it includes a new short video and information about relapse. They also have a facebook community page for caregivers of schizophrenia.
Visit website

BRAIN AND BEHAVIOUR RESEARCH FOUNDATION

A research foundation that converts donations to grants awarded to projects leading to discoveries in understanding causes and improving treatments of disorders in children and adults.

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SCHIZOPHRENIA.COM

A long-running informative website with article written by researchers and academics on the subject of schizophrenia.

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Suicide

CENTRE FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION

Affiliated with Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), CSP offers training (community workshops and online courses) and has the largest English language library dedicated to the collection and dissemination of suicide prevention, intervention and postvention resources.

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LOCAL CANADIAN SUICIDE CRISIS CENTRES

Visit this site to find a Canadian crisis centre near you.

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CANADIAN ASSOCIATION FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION

Information and resources provided to reduce the suicide rate and minimize the harmful consequences of suicidal behaviour.

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Telephone Resources and Crisis Lines

For emergencies please dial 911 or contact your medical health care professional.

EMENTALHEALTH.CA

Please click here for a complete list of location-specific crisis phone lines in your area, all Canadian provinces and territories can be found here.

KIDS HELP PHONE

Organization with the mission to improve the well-being of children and youth in Canada by providing them anonymous and confidential professional counselling, referrals and information in English and French, through technologically-based communications media.

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Credit: Healthy Minds Canada

Stop The Stigma – Mental Health

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There’s seems to be so much buzz around mental health awareness lately, and I couldn’t be more proud to hear about it. It is making my heart, and mind so happy. Everywhere I look there seems to be a meme, poster, or post related to mental health.

Time To Change launched their February 1 2018 awareness campaign, then soon after Bell’s Lets Talk followed suit. (In case you are wondering where it is all coming from).

Both campaigns are working towards a similar goal to put an end to Mental Health stigma and discrimination. They are providing people with an abundance of resources, and empowering people to Speak Up. I encourage everyone to get involved. Every effort made leads to results, so let’s all stand up and make one ginormous impact together.

I am sure at some point we (Mental Health Conquerors) have all felt the negative effects of stigmatization at some point, including myself.

I went many years without seeking professional help because I was trying to do the impossible by braving it out. I was forcing myself to just ride the highs and lows the best I could, but eventually it led to maladaptive coping techniques and major mood instability. I was extremely fragile at my lowest point, and when my partner couldn’t deal with my withdrawn and disconnected state…. He left. This sent me spiraling into a bottomless pit of darkness, feeling utterly empty, dazed, and alone. (With that being said, my heart and mind forgave him, not every relationship is meant to work out. He came into my life to teach me something, then his purpose was done.) The weeks that followed are a blur, I remember feeling numb, and lacking a significant amount of energy that I couldn’t even bring myself to do the simple everyday things that took little to no effort to do before. I knew I couldn’t survive like that; I reached out to my doctor for professional and medical help. Bless her soul. After trial and error with medications, and psychotherapy, I started feeling like myself again, and I am back stronger than ever. What was my point of me telling you all of this? Oh ya, it had to do with the stigma surrounding psychiatric medications. It’s the main reason why I never reached out for help after all this time.

I was afraid of what people would think. I knew some important people in my life would disapprove of medication therapy mainly due to ignorance and/or lack of education. All it took was a little research on my part, and teaching about mental health to start changing people’s views.

Taking medication is not the “easy way out”, it requires commitment and effort, but more importantly it helps me to really live each day. It is absolutely no different than taking medication for a physical illness. I take it because I have a chemical imbalance, and you possibly take medication for a biological (or chemical) reason related to the cardiovascular, respiratory or any other related body system. Just because I have a bad day, it doesn’t mean I forgot to take my medication. I will have ups and downs just like anybody else in this whole wide world. Medication has and will not change my identity or who I am as a person, instead they have helped to relieve the symptoms of the illness. No, they are not a “happy pill”, in-fact they don’t make me happy at all; they decrease the threshold of the low state and help prevent future relapse. Sometimes you just have to face the fact that I (or you) might have to be on medication for a lifetime. Sometimes there is no “fixing” it, instead it is a matter of learning to function and survive with it. Regardless, it is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of strength. Taking care of yourself is the most rewarding thing anyone can do for their mind, body and soul.


| Now lets talk – education |

What is Stigma and Discrimination?

Stigma is a negative stereotype. Stigma is a reality for many people with a mental illness, and they report that how others judge them is one of their greatest barriers to a complete and satisfying life.

Stigma differs from discrimination. Discrimination is unfair treatment due to a person’s identity, which includes race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status or disability, including mental disorder.

Stigma is the negative stereotype and discrimination is the behaviour that results from this negative stereotype.

Credit: CMHA

What can we do to STOP the stigma?

  • Know the facts – Educate yourself about substance use and mental health problems
  • Be aware of your attitudes and behaviour – We’ve all grown up with prejudices and judgmental thinking, which are passed on by society and reinforced by family, friends and the media. But we can change the way we think—and see people as unique human beings, not as labels or stereotypes.
  • Choose your words carefully – The way we speak can affect the way other people think and speak.
  • Educate others – Speak up. Find opportunities to pass on facts and positive attitudes about people with substance use and mental health problems.
  • Focus on the positive – People with mental health and substance use problems make valuable contributions to society. Their health problems are just one part of who they are.
  • Support people – Treat people who have substance use and mental health problems with dignity and respect. Think about how you’d like others to act toward you if you were in the same situation.
  • Include everyone – People with mental health and substance use problems have a right to take an equal part in society. Let’s make sure that happens.

Credit: CAMH

Bell’s – Lets Talk (Stopping Stigma)

Language matters – Words to watch out for: “Schizo”, instead say a “Person with schizophrenia” or “Crazy”, instead say a “Person with a mental illness

Educate yourself – Stigma has been around for a long time, and knowing the facts and myths about mental illness can be a great way to help end the stigma. Read about facts and myths, and become a stigma buster.

Be kind – Simple kindness can make a world of difference. Whether it be a smile, being a good listener or an invitation for coffee and a chat, these simple acts of kindness can help open up the conversation and let someone know you are there for them. Expressions like “You’ll get over it” and “Just relax” can minimize how a person is feeling. Instead offer your support and say “I’m sorry you aren’t feeling well.” Ask what you can do to help.

Listen and ask – Mental illness is a very common form of human pain and suffering. Being a good listener and asking how you can help, sometimes just even being there for people you care about, can be the first step in recovery.

Talk about it – Break the silence.

Credit: Bell Lets Talk

Did you know?

  • 1 person in 5 in Canada (over 6 million people) will have a mental health problem during their lifetime.
  • 1 in 7 Canadians aged 15 and older (about 3.5 million people) have alcohol-related problems; 1 in 20 (about 1.5 million) have cannabis-related concerns; and some have problems with cocaine, speed, ecstasy (and other hallucinogens), heroin and other illegal drugs.
  • Mental health and substance use problems affect people of all ages, education and income levels, religions, cultures and types of jobs.

Why do people develop mental health and substance use problems?

There are many reasons why people develop mental health and substance use problems:

  • Some are genetic or biological—people are born with them.
  • Some come from people’s experiences—such as stressful situations in their childhood; at school or work; or in places where they lived with injustice, violence or war.
  • And sometimes we simply don’t know why a problem has developed.

Regardless of why and how they develop, mental health and substance use problems are health problems—just like cancer, arthritis, diabetes and heart attacks.

So why are people with substance use and mental health problems looked upon differently?

Stigma refers to negative attitudes (prejudice) and negative behaviour (discrimination) toward people with substance use and mental health problems.

Stigma includes:

  • having fixed ideas and judgments—such as thinking that people with substance use and mental health problems are not normal or not like us; that they caused their own problems; or that they can simply get over their problems if they want to
  • fearing and avoiding what we don’t understand—such as excluding people with substance use and mental health problems from regular parts of life (for example, from having a job or a safe place to live).

What are the effects of prejudice and discrimination?

Prejudice and discrimination exclude people with mental health and substance use problems from activities that are open to other people.

This limits people’s ability to:

  • get and keep a job
  • get and keep a safe place to live
  • get health care (including treatment for substance use and mental health problems) and other support
  • be accepted by their family, friends and community
  • find and make friends or have other long-term relationships
  • take part in social activities.

Prejudice and discrimination often become internalized by people with mental health and substance use problems.

This leads them to:

  • believe the negative things that other people and the media say about them (self-stigma) have lower self-esteem because they feel guilt and shame.
  • Prejudice and discrimination contribute to people with mental health and substance use problems keeping their problems a secret.

As a result:

  • they avoid getting the help they need their mental health or substance use problems are less likely to decrease or go away.


Additional Resources

Bells Lets Talk – Ways to help; Speak Up
Bells Lets Talk – Ways to help – Tool Kit (How to Speak Up)
Mental Health Commission – Information about Stigma and Discrimination.
CMHA – Information about Stigma and Discrimination.
Mental Health . org – Information about Stigma and Discrimination.
Psychology Today – Information about Stigma
Time To Change – Time to Talk
Mend The Mind – Myths about Mental Illness
CMHA – Myths about Mental Illness
Disordered Living – Myths about Mental Health Medication
Mental Health . gov – Myths about Mental Health Medication

Understanding the impact of stigma on people with mental illness (Article): https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1489832/

Mental Health Stigma: Society, Individuals, and the Profession (Article) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3248273/


Please Like, Comment, and Share – It is always greatly appreciated.

Rachel Page ♥

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Free Apps – Mental Strength

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Mental Health Applications

TalkLife – A safe social network to get help and give help.

Vent – Express your feelings with people that care.

ReachOut – Online Support Group app & Blog for Chronic Illness Patients.

Pacifica – (free, android and iphone) – tool to help track mood, goals, health, CBT exercises, thought patterns, and relaxation exercises.

 

 

7 Cups of Tea – (free, android and iphone) – connect through chat to a trained listener to discuss any problems you may be having, to vent, or to get some advice or resources, or just to talk. Free, anonymous, and confidential. Also can be used in your browser.

Headspace – (free, android and iphone) – for mindfulness meditation.

What’s Up? Mental Health App –  App Store: What’s Up?     Google Play: What’s Up?
A fantastic free app utilizing some of the best CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) and ACT (Acceptance Commitment Therapy) methods to help you cope with Depression, Anxiety, Anger and more!

MoodTool – Designed to help you combat depression and alleviate your negative moods, aiding you on your road to recovery.

FearTools  – An evidence-based app designed to help you combat anxiety, aiding you on your road to recovery. This application is especially useful for those suffering from Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Phobias, and Social Anxiety Disorder.

Fabulous – Embark on a journey to reset your habits. A science-based app, incubated in Duke’s Behavioral Economics Lab, that will help you build healthy rituals into your life, just like an elite athlete.

Always There – (free, android and iphone) – App from KidsHelpPhone to get support on the go, safely and anonymously.

Be Safe – (free, android and iphone) – create a safety plan for yourself that you can access quickly in times of need.

Mindshift – (free, android and iphone) – help cope with anxiety by learning how to relax, develop more helpful ways of thinking, and indentify steps to help take charge of your anxiety.

HealthyMinds – (free, android and iphone) – track and support your mental health, learn individualized strategies and patterns of your moods and solutions, stress busters and relaxation

Hello Cruel World – (free, iPhone only) – 100 alternatives to suicide or self-harm behaviors

Buddhify – (nominal one time fee, android and iphone) – 80 guided meditations and mindfulness exercises.

Rise up + Recover – (free, android and iphone) App to help with eating disorders – food, dieting, exercise, and body image.

Recovery Record – (free, android and iphone) App to help with eating disorders, added by recommendation of other students.


Suggestions are encouraged!

Please comment, like and share – It is always greatly appreciated. 

Rachel Page