Hood up, head down – by Justin

Something I am sure we all do is avoiding people and eye contact. Hunched shoulders, headphones in, music on loud. Someone told me a few months ago about looking at chimneys, didn’t really pay much attention at the time. But recently I’ve been trying to be a bit more positive, don’t know why it came to me but it did, so thought I would give it a go. Warm sunny day helped as I wandered into town.

No chance of wearing a hoody that day. So I looked at shop names while I was walking, looking just above everyone walking past and still avoiding eye contact of course. Looking buildings rather than the floor.

It was strange at first but it did give me more confidence. It does sounds weird I know but it actually worked. It makes you push your shoulders back and my chest out, breathing more deeply and feeling a bit better about myself.
I have to remind myself to do it cos its not something I would do naturally at all. But its something I certainly think can work for everyone. 

Getting outdoors – By Alisha

When things are quite bad I tend to not want to be around anyone. The key thing that helps me is getting outdoors and out of my usual surroundings, whether it be a drive to somewhere like box hill or walking around a local park. It gives my mind a second to breathe; particularly when going to big open spaces- being by rivers/ the sea helps the most.

Another thing that personally help me when things aren’t too great is painting- you don’t have to be the next Van Gough or have anything in particular to paint- just sitting and messing around with paint on a canvas or paper is somewhat cathartic and can be a good way to take my mind off of things and channel the negative energy I feel into something else.

I’ve recently made more regular visits to the gym which also help greatly; i find myself focusing on what I’m doing as opposed to thoughts in my head which helps. On the days that I feel will descend into bad mental health days I make sure I speak to friends/ arrange to see them as I know this will help to prevent my mental state declining.

Creative Expression – by Josh

From my own experience I’ve found that for me being active, as challenging as it may be sometimes, is without a doubt the best way for me to clear my head when it’s cloudy. I’ve tried so many hobbies to help me with this, some I did okay with and others I failed at but I kept trying more and more things until eventually drumming landed its way into my life. I’m not saying drumming or music is the key, everyone has his or her own interests and activities they enjoy but for me this really was a game changer in my life.

When I have a hard day mentally or physically, an hour of drumming is like therapy for my mind and body. Yes it aches and I have blisters but I really do enjoy it, as I feel accomplished in myself. I’m not doing it to impress anyone or to make money, it’s there to just help me find myself and I think everyone needs to have an outlet like that in his or her life. It’s very important to express yourself freely and art is such a beautiful way to do that, creatively is something everyone has in them, it’s an expression of yourself make sure you find a way to let it out.

I honestly cannot express how grateful I am to have music to help me vent my negativity away; it’s saved me in the darkest points of my life. Art is everywhere; there is no limit to what is seen as creative. Express yourself, be active and create your own art for yourself.

Kingston Carnival 2019

2020 marks 20 years since the start of Kingston carnival, hosted by Kingston Race Equality Council here in Kingston upon Thames.

Kingston Carnival was set up by KREC an amazing organisation that “work towards the elimination of racial discrimination and associated inequalities. Promote equality of opportunity and good relations between persons of different racial groups. To address the Human Rights and needs of all communities”
Its organisations such as these that we at create4mentalhealth are honoured to be involved with, helping and supporting each other to achieve goals that support individuals everywhere.

Let us help Becky 💛

Becky has some simple advice for people everywhere …. Lets keep everyone safe so lives can get back to normal soon

This is Becky …. Animation by the amazing @violawangstudio. This animation is as relevant now as it was back in March when we made it. A few simple rules that we all need to follow.

Trying something different

After having one of those tricky weeks that we have all had, we needed to get some our mojo back. So we thought we would try something a bit different, something that we have not done since school. We messaged our friends @banquetrecords, grabbed some wooden pallets and hatched a plan.

We thought it would be a great idea to make a seating area in the garden. Something that was free and looked cool. We honestly had no idea what we were doing, but that’s the point. That’s why we did it. It was important that we tried to do something as a team that we could be proud of and more importantly learn something new. (learning what not to do mostly)

It was great to know that what ever happened was a bonus, the wood was free, the tools had been borrowed … you will be amazed how many friends have power tools.Knowing we could make a total mess of everything and still enjoy the experience.We of course made sure we were safe, socially distanced and did our best to not annoy the neighbours.

No matter how big or small your idea is … to just do it. What ever you feel like doing: make, mend, customise, glue, paint, glitter.  What’s the worst that can happen?
If we messed up (and we did loads) … well ok, they were just pallets we got for free. We can always get another pallet and start again.
Don’t let the challenge itself hold you back. There were times when we wish we hadn’t started, or chosen something a bit more simple but the sense of achievement was and still is a with us.   

And for those people who make pallets … you guys do an amazing job. So well put together, and so difficult to get apart.

We all need to try and ‘Be More Kind’

We can all understand how it feels to be stressed, uptight and anxious, especially these days.

So its important that we all try to be a little more kind these days, As the legendary Frank Turner says “Be more kind, my friends, try to be more kind” … There will be more from Frank Turner coming soon including an exclusive interview.

We all struggle sometimes

You don’t have to struggle alone, Please reach out to someone if you are finding it tough.

These days we are all having a difficult time of it. Talking and sharing problems is the best way to feel better. If you feel you want to talk to a professional there are links to free help here.