Mental health first aid

Mental health first aid – drafting my book provided it. Selling it, though? Well, I’m going to need a ton more of it to make it through.

Jonathan Arenburg
Jonathan Arenburg

Jonathan is a mental health blogger, published author, and speaker. He has appeared in numerous newspapers and has been a guest on many podcasts.

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Have you ever been so consumed with keeping busy? Always running to get a reprieve from your mental-illness symptoms? I know I sure have. In fact, I’m doing it as I write this post. It’s not a terrible thing, to “keep yourself busy.” It is, however, like most things in life, a two-sided affair.

Yes, as much as we want somethings in our lives to be nothing but rainbows and good times, nothing is a constant joy, nothing. With that said, I have made it this far redefining, not only myself, but also my life’s purpose. Ah, this The Road To Mental Wellness has been a slice, to say the least.

Don’t get me wrong – consuming my time with blog-posting and book-writing has indeed kept me alive throughout my illness journey; and for that, I am eternally grateful.

Buuut, as I said, there is good and bad in everything. In my experience, any venture undertaken is always met with unforeseen complications.

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For example, authoring my book, The Road To Mental Wellness was a wonderful therapeutic experience. What it did for me was allow me to bang away at the keyboard and produce some meaning as I typed. And….. when I needed mental-health first aid, I would wander off to my sanctuary. My room, where I slept the symptoms away.

This was amazing! I could customize my purpose depending on what my mental health needed. Not only could I customize my work, but I could also plan my days around therapy sessions, family, and exercise.

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All of this was fine and dandy, that is, until the day came when I realized that I wasn’t ready for the world…

The day came when a flat, light-grey package landed on the doorstep with a thump. I excitedly rushed to grab this package and knew right away that it was the package I’d been waiting for.

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Picking it up, the first thing I thought was, “Man, the packaging is crinklier than I was expecting.” The thought quickly exited my head when I felt the unmistakeable flexing that only a paperback book can make. “It’s here!” I yelled, remembering that I was the only one home to hear myself.

Firing up my phone’s camera to make a video of my triumph, I ripped open the package. Like any normal person, I used my teeth to rip away the tab. It came apart perfectly and as a result, I was able to slide the book out of the envelope and into my eager hands.

Front and back cover of the road to mental wellness - 8 sings your relationship is hurting your mental health.
Find out more below – Written for therapeutic release, published in hopes it helps you.

Finally, after three years, the fruits of my labour were staring back at me. My face, looking off in the distance as if I were searching for a new purpose. The background, light in design, splashed with the colours white and a gentle green for contrast. I thought, “It’s the perfect weight, and size. I can’t believe this is MY book!” I’m holding my book!

Then it hit me

While seeing my book, in its glossy cover and black-and-white grandeur was great mental-health first aid, something hit me. “Damn, now I am going to have to sell it!” I said to myself. “Not only do I have to sell it, but I must also market it, pound the pavement to get it into reader’s hands.”

Worst of all, I thought, “I am going to have to brave it all, every last pitch, person and noise.” “I know I am not ready for this.” And honestly, it’s true. I am not mentally well enough to go it alone.

So, what was therapeutic in its creation, may work to serve as my decline in its published format. I know in my heart, that I will need “boots on the ground.” Someone there to help get me through the torment.

In other words, I will need someone there to provide me with mental-health first aid. Any takers?

Why not read Burnout and Women – Who’s that girl?

Since there is no turning back now, I must find ways to cope, and find people to be there. Additionally, I need to remember why I wrote the book in the first place. I want to help others see that they are not alone and that they get to choose where they put their energy, regardless of how limited it might be.

Ultimately, I want to leave the world a better place than when I found it. So, that means that if my book helps others, it will have all been worth it. Or at least, this is what I keep telling myself.

“Hoping for a better world, for everyone.”

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Jonathan Arenburg

Jonathan Arenburg is a mental health blogger, S speaker, writer, and published author; He is also the host of the mental wellness podcast, #thewellnesstalksHe has also appeared in the i'Mpossible's Lemonade Stand III. He has also been a contributing writer for Mental health talk, a column in his local paper. In addition, he has also written for the mental health advocacy organization; Sick Not Weak.Jonathan has also appeared on several mental health-related podcasts Including: A New Dawn, The Depression Files, Books and Authors, and Men Are Nuts. Since being put off work because of PTSD, Jonathan has dedicated his time to his mental wellness journey while helping others along the way.Educated as an addictions' counsellor, he has dedicated most of his professional life of eighteen years, working with those who have intellectual disabilities, behavioural challenges, and mental illness.He has also spent fifteen years in the volunteer fire service helping his community.His new book (2021), “The Road To Mental Wellness,” goes into detail about his life-long battle with depression, anxiety and more recently, PTSD. In it, he hopes to provide insight on how mental illness cultivates over a lifetime and, if not recognized and treated, how it impacts the entirety of one's life; right from childhood into the adult years. Jonathan lives with his two children in Nova Scotia, Canada.

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