Here are a few extraordinary wellness resources to help you in the battle against spiritual ashiness.
OH, HEY. So, for the past year or so, Alex has been working with his GetSomeJoy team to develop a digital wellness content and event network to spread joy and promote wellness among Black and brown folks. They're kicking off a new #SelfCareCheckIn movement with a pre-launch conference call with some special guests to share what they've been up to and have a light and casual chat about wellness and how we can be greater together.
Self-care is a full-time job, but what does self-care mean to you? How can we engage our communities in the battle against spiritual ashiness? Join mental health advocate Alexander Hardy (The Extraordinary Negroes) and Team GetSomeJoy for a discussion on wellness and self-care for Mental Health Awareness Month, featuring Andrew Shade, Editorial Director of Broadway Black and Ricky Neal, Head of Diversity & Inclusion for Crisis Text Line.
About our guests:
Andrew Shade (Broadway Black)
Andrew Shade has a burning passion that lies in the arts. Originally from Fort Wayne, IN, he resides in the heart of Harlem, helping to lead the way in building a more diverse and knowledgeable audience in the theatre world. He is the Founder & Editorial Director of Broadway Black, a digital platform dedicated to highlighting the achievements and successes of African-American theatre artists on and off the Broadway stage. Broadway Black has taken the theatre industry by storm & has been excelled by the likes of Ben Vereen, Jennifer Hudson, & Misty Copeland just to name a few.However, Shade feels the greatest achievement has been using his experience and knowledge of the industry to create a community celebrating his own. Recently awarded The Mountaintop Award by Actors Equity Association & BOLDNYC for being a trailblazer. "There is no greater joy than fueling & inspiring those who once thought the theatre was a foreign place to which they were not welcome," he says. He lives the life of the Broadway Black slogan, and shows what can happen "When The Theatre Goes Dark."
Ricky Neal (Crisis Text Line)
Ricky Neal is a country boy from Laurens, South Carolina who currently lives in Harlem. An alumnus of Morehouse College, Ricky taught third grade prior to taking positions at Crisis Text Line. He is passionate about the exposure to and quality of mental health care in marginalized communities.
You'll be able to join the conversation via conference call so you can listen from wherever you are. And it's $Free.99. Taddow.
Welcome to another round of Mental Health Monday, your weekly dose of stories, resources, and motivation for your everyday life.
Most of 2017 has been one grand Iggy Azalea a capella concert-level struggle.
Welcome to another round of Mental Health Monday, your weekly dose of stories, resources, and motivation for your everyday life. Last week, Jenifer Lewis opened up about overcoming sex addiction and bipolar disorder, Jihan Thompson talked about why it can be hard for Black women to find a therapist, Zack McDermott reflects on his public breakdown, Dwan Carter addresses the realities of suicide among Black teens, and Rev. Jacqui Lewis wrote about growing up being Black and depressed. and you should definitely read it.
Because it's always a good time for celebrating winning-ass Black folks, here is Tiffany Haddish's monologue from this weekend's episode of Saturday Night Live.
Portland, OR. A Discussion on Black Trauma, Mental Health, and Self Care. November 16 @ 5:00PM - 6:30PM
Please join the Urban League Young Professionals for an in depth and open facilitated discussion with Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare on black trauma, black mental health, and self care. Wine, beer, and light refreshments will be served. Info and RSVP
Atlanta, GA. The Key: A discussion about the tools needed for the mental, physical and economic health of Black men. @ November 18 @ 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Join us as we discuss black men in the context of hiphop culture. The Key is a discussion about the tools needed for the mental, physical, economic, emotional, sexual and legal health of Black men. From JDilla's Lupus, to Meek Mills' unfair sentencing to Pimp C's and Nate Dogg's untimely death and Kanye's breakdown, let's discuss the importance total health of men of color. Info and RSVP
THIS WEEK'S GOODNESS:
Troubled by the death of Melissa Wright’s mother, the Wright family goes through unforeseen obstacles that begin to hinder all of their family relations. While this is occurring, the Love family enters their lives. In every mysterious way possible, they go from good to bad. This series touches on how your past can affect your future and the mental illnesses of anger, alcoholism, greed, and depression.
"When a Breakdown Is Public (or, That Time My Mom Was on WorldStarHipHop)" by Angela Helm [The Root]
Soon after that, my best cousin Chanise said she wanted to talk to me. She revealed that “Aunt Teddie was on WorldStarHipHop,” and the family didn’t know how to tell me. I looked up at her in half amusement (like, word?) and half horror. Oh Lord. Within days, people all over the country were hitting me up, friends and family, telling me that they’d seen my mom on WorldStar (who knew that shit was so popular?). Her video has been viewed more than half a million times (something I think my mother is slightly proud of), but to me it was crass, it was ugly. It was personal.
It was my mother.
To Love Does Not Mean To Endure Abuse by Katrina [Manifesting ME]
The narrative I’m speaking of is the ‘ride-or-die’ narrative. A narrative typically aimed at women which encourages and praises them for sticking by their partner’s side through everything without wavering. This often means being cheated on, lied to, manipulated, humiliated, and disrespected but still holding this person down. It is a narrative presented in many songs, shows, movies, etc and it is often aimed at women of color.
And quite frankly I’m tired of it!
To coincide with Children's Grief Awareness Month, Da Brat's story of losing her father as a young girl was featured by A Legacy Left Behind (here).
"How Code Switching Is Turning Black People Into Method Actors" by Hakim "Kimo" Hill [Blavity]
Over the last year, my partner Cliff Notez and I, have been going to universities with two of our films about black mental health, and doing workshops with students and faculty about coping skills and trauma. A lot of these students have an unmatched grind, trying to be full-time students, full-time workers, full-time friends, children and, sometimes, parents. Often times, code switching in between all of them, their multiple personalities leaked into each other, causing a stress that can lead to depression.
"Not White, Not Rich, and Seeking Therapy" by Olga Khazan [The Atlantic]
She found 28 percent of white, middle-class callers were called back and offered any appointment, compared to just 17 percent of African-American, middle-class callers. Only eight percent of the working-class callers of either race were offered an appointment. When therapists offered appointments in the ideal time slot—weekday evenings—the wealthier, white callers prevailed once again.
Kugelmass also found subtle differences by gender, with the odds largely stacked against black men.
"9 Things to Do When Having Suicidal Thoughts" (.pdf file) [Lion Heart Life Healing]
WRITE DOWN THINGS THAT YOU WANT TO END -Sometimes we become suicidal because we want to end things, not ourselves. Write down things that you want to change in your life and if you feel up to it, write out a plan to change those things.
If you have a mental health resource, event, or piece of content we should know about, step into our office. You da bess.
Good day, best friend. Welcome to another round of Mental Health Monday, your weekly dose of stories, resources, and motivation for your everyday life. On our last feature, we introduced you to lupus warrior and host of #LupusChat Tiffany Peterson, who shared why anime is the shit, how her advocacy work impacts her mental and emotional wellness, and a few things she does to get some joy. Check it out here.
THIS WEEK'S GOODNESS:
Shelah Marie, founder of Curly, Curvy, Conscious, shared a few useful tips for those new to meditation who may need some help finding their quiet place, centering themselves, and getting their woosah on.
"Black, young and suicidal: An epidemic we must continue to bring to light" by George M. Johnson [The Grio]
Let’s face it, Black folk are killing themselves and the rate of suicides are only increasing across many demographics.
According to the CDC, suicide is now the third-leading cause of death for Blacks ages 15-24. Although white people have the highest suicide rates in the country, the numbers around Black boys age 5-11 have doubled over the past 20 years. Researchers using this data have concluded that part of this rise is due to Black children “likely to be exposed to violence and traumatic stress, and that black children are more likely to experience an early onset of puberty, which can increase the risk of depression and impulsive aggression.”
In recent years, more rappers have been vocal about seeing therapists. Logic is at the forefront of rap’s battle for mental health; he first admitted to seeing a therapist in 2014 and he still goes. His recent hit “1-800-273-8255” was released in partnership with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and he performed the song at the VMAs. Last year, Run-D.M.C.’s Darryl McDaniels put out a book called Ten Ways Not to Commit Suicide, in which he admitted to first seeking professional help in 2004 and pushed for more black men to seek treatment. “When I went to therapy I realized … that therapy isn’t ‘soft,’” he said. “My saying is, ‘Therapy is gangsta.’ It actually empowered me.”
"I am not OK: stoicism, mental health, and the black community" by Britt Julious [WBEZ Chicago]
I had a friend in school who wrote about her depression, and I berated her online. I didn’t understand why she couldn’t get over it. In my mind, this was not sickness. And therapy, while good in theory, seemed unnecessary for someone so young, smart, and wealthy living in an affluent suburb. “Why can’t she just push through this?” I used to ask. And as she continued to talk about her pain, I continued to feel angry. “This is not a problem,” I thought. I told a relative about the girl, and they said she was just acting dramatic. And in all of the things that signaled who was and was not a weak person, “acting dramatic,” was one of the worst. There was depression and there was “depression,” and I learned to only recognize the latter.
Phillip J. Roundtree, MSW, MS, mental health advocate and host of #YouGoodMan?, a podcast focusing on men's wellness, shared his experience navigating life as depressed Black man, and how he overcomes negative feelings, a lack of motivation, and bounces back from bad days and crappy moments.
"Treating Insomnia Can Ease Anxiety, Depression Study Says" by Shantell E. Jamison [EBONY]
The researchers found that those who had the CBT sleep treatment reduced their insomnia significantly. They also showed small but sustained reductions in paranoia and hallucinatory experiences.
The CBT led to improvements in depression, anxiety, nightmares, psychological well-being, and daytime work and home functioning, the researchers said.
"Students weigh in on mental health in the black community" by Taylor Y Matthews [University Daily Kansan]
One student said mental health in the black community isn’t "popular" to discuss. Another said the topic takes her out of her comfort zone. A third mentioned that black students aren’t comfortable talking about their personal feelings with someone who isn’t black.
Their answers made apparent why the National Panhellenic Council, which represents the nine historically African-American Greek lettered fraternities and sororities on campus, sponsored the forum "Mental Health in the Black Community,” at the Kansas Union on Sept. 14th.
Alex's year-long multimedia movement to encourage mental and emotional wellness among Black and brown folks, GetSomeJoy, is finally live. On the horizon: engaging events, a video storytelling series, Mental Health First Aid Trainings, an online wellness hub with a directory of Black and brown mental health professionals and wellness coaches/practitioners, and programs, agencies, and non-profits offering other vital support, and much more.
Learn more and answer the question, "How do you get some joy?" here.