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Today is time to talk day. I thought about talking about my own journey of learning to deal with depression, but I realized there is something far more pressing.
At this point, I would like to say, what follows is my personal point of view.
I’m a youth worker, and have been full time for 15 years. Mental wellbeing always was a challenge though the teenage years, it’s the time when we wrestle with who we are, stepping out from the cocoon of childhood and into the identity of our adulthood.
But its so much harder now than it ever was. The 24-7 pressure of media, expectations, austerity and the like has become a poisonous cocktail for many young people.
EVERY DAY I come into contact with young people either with diagnosed mental illnesses or simply weighed down with anxiety, worries and fear.
The other day I was helping a young person with techniques to deal with anxiety. They are not diagnosed, just suffering. In the same hour another young person expressed their stress at being in a class detention. They were worried it would have a long term affect on their career.
Sounds foolish doesn’t it, but that’s what society is doing to young people.
Don’t get me started on the young people I know who self harm or have depression or just simply need someone outside family and friends to talk to.
There is no money to support young people and what services are available are stretched beyond breaking point.
I would sound the warning siren for the train wreck of young peoples lives.
But it is already here.
As a youth worker, part of my job is helping young people out if the wreckage.
So I have a request. If you know ANYONE between the ages of eleven and twenty, take time not only to talk..
But to listen.
Without judgment, and with compassion. Please, take time to listen to young people. Let them know they really matter, that they are visible, valuable and wanted.
The real face of poverty in Britain:
Originally posted on kathleen kerridge:
This is a post about a subject very close to home. My home. It is about politicians who wouldn’t know poverty if it chewed on their overpaid arses.
It’s about Jamie Oliver.
Now, to put this out there, I loved Jamie. For years and years, I idolised the man. He taught me to cook, when I could barely operate a Pot Noodle and we lived off Smash (dehydrated potatoes) and pasta (we even overcooked that). I would watch all his shows and learn, slowly, from the TV. In less than a year, I was able to cook a three course meal for 15 people. Gourmet became easy and I was soon laughing my way through 3 meat roasts and cooked-from-scratch curries. I owe my skill in the kitchen to Jamie. I have a lot to thank him for.
Jamie Oliver was good to watch, when I had money. Before I had…
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I have just completed the book Mindfulness: A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world by Prof Mark Williams. It has been of real benefit to me. Like many people I have tended to live in my head, always thinking about what I am doing next or worrying about what might be, rather than being present to the life I am actually living.
And like many people, it made me ill.
Not just through the depression I have had a running battle with for years, but also making my faith life unwell, causing me to struggle to grow with Jesus, who I have handed my life over to.
Meditation has taught me how to pray again. The two can be the same, but often are not. I meditate on my breath and body, when I pray, that being present is turned towards God.
And that’s what meditation is teaching me. How to rest my full awareness on God. He who is ever present, while I have been absent, to my own life and to His central place in it.
I feel like I have come home again.
And my mind begins to heal, I find my spirit is waking up to the presence of Jesus, right here, right now, because as C.S. Lewis says:
For the Present is the point at which time touches eternity
Worth a read…
Originally posted on ideas.ted.com:
It’s safe to say that economic inequality bothers us. But why? Harvard philosopher T. M. Scanlon offers four reasons we should tackle — and fix — the problem.
The great inequality of income and wealth in the world, and within the United States, is deeply troubling. It seems, even to many of us who benefit from this inequality, that something should be done to reduce or eliminate it. But why should we think this? What are the strongest reasons for trying to bring about greater equality of income and wealth?
One obvious reason for redistributing resources from the rich to the poor is simply that this is a way of making the poor better off. In his TED Talk on “effective altruism,” Peter Singer advances powerful reasons of this kind for voluntary redistribution: Many people in the world are poor, and the improvement in their lives that richer people can bring…
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“The answer to, “Why am I doing this?” is “Because I want to do this” rather than to please someone else, or to buy that thing. When you buy a new car, you pretty quickly want the next car; the cycle never ends. Whereas if you’re happy being present—you can always be happy.”
Originally posted on ideas.ted.com:
On a trip to the Bahamas in 2012, I got the chance to feed a group of grey reef sharks. Now, feeding sharks is not an activity to be taken lightly. It’s a complex challenge that essentially requires you to coordinate a group of wild animals; you want them excited enough that they stick around. But you can’t just dump lots of food in the water, because that will whip them into a frenzy, with potentially disastrous consequences.
You spend a lot of time training for a dive like this. And the most important thing is for all of that training to be second nature. If you’re present and aware in the moment, the action just happens intuitively. The sharks, in all honesty, feel almost like dogs. They have personalities — you see which ones are a little bit more aggressive and which ones have a personality that borders on…
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