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July 8, 2020
Jenny Cheang (Director of Digital Marketing) joins America and Theresa to talk through the struggle of identifying who they are. They all share their personal ties to their cultural heritage, the time in their lives when they started to explore their race and how their families played a major role in their identities. They have each struggled at times to fit in with their cultural heritage but have found a sense of pride because of it. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
July 1, 2020
This month is the start of BIPOC (Blacks, Indigenous People, and People of Color) Mental Health Month so America and Theresa talk about what led to the name change and why the new designation better honors these groups. They then have a dialogue about the connection between racism and trauma. They discuss why empathy is key, how we shape the world through our experiences and why we all want to feel human and feel that we matter. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
June 24, 2020
America and Theresa have teamed up with the postpartum warrior Sasha Nicole from Partum Evolution to talk about the intrusive thoughts they’ve had about their children. Theresa and Sasha Nicole share their experiences with postpartum depression and the shame that came with their invasive thoughts. Sasha Nicole found a supportive husband while Theresa valued the open conversations with co-workers to help them get through tough times. They share how vital it was to allow themselves to acknowledge that their feelings were valid and also include some helpful resources for anyone going through postpartum depression. To take a postpartum screen visit https://screening.mhanational.org/screening-tools/postpartum-depression To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
June 17, 2020
With everything going on during these current protests, Theresa and America have an open conversation about how hard it is to continuously explain trauma. They talk about the significance of validating someone else’s feelings, the commonality between race and mental health and why we're all just looking for love and support. Let’s all reflect on how we can do better. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
June 10, 2020
Irritability seems to be amplified while everyone is in quarantine and America and Theresa explain why that is. They talk about why space is important and why voicing your needs is key. There is a discussion on irritation in relationships, how to try to slow down the feelings of agitation and ways in which you can shift your focus when your beginning to feel irritated. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
June 3, 2020
America and Theresa teamed up with Rwenshaun Miller to discuss what it’s like to be in a relationship with someone who has a mental illness. Rwenshaun shares his personal bouts with his own mental health issues and how he approaches his relationships in his personal life. All three of them open up about how they are working on themselves to try to improve their relationships, how their mental health is like a third person in their relationship and they highlight why communication is crucial to relaying your specific needs. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
May 27, 2020
Theresa and America are joined once again by Whitney Ball (the Marketing and Outreach Manager at Mental Health America) and they talk about what it’s like to not be able to focus. Theresa and Whitney speak about the guilt that comes with struggling to focus and how their thoughts become overwhelming when they can’t get things done, making them even more unproductive. They have suggestions of their personal coping skills that help them be more productive, tempering expectations and trying to pinpoint who is setting the expectations for you. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
May 20, 2020
Theresa and America explain what the title of the podcast means and how they both embrace it. They give a brief history of Clifford W. Beers and how his contributions sparked the mental health reform movement by trying get more people to “fight in the open.” They both share how their families handle the conversations around mental health, how open they choose to be about their mental health on social media and how your story can be empowering to others. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
May 13, 2020
America is joined by Matt Gleason (Mental Health Association Oklahoma) and they talk about how we can try to offer support for others. Matt lost his brother and sister in the last few years and he shares why one call from his boss helped open the door to openly talking about his grief. They discuss the first steps in offering support, trying to find the people that can help, attempting to navigate through what kind of support a person needs and the importance of reaching out for help. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
May 6, 2020
It’s raining at America’s house so she and Theresa try to bring in some light on a dark day by discussing how they try to stay positive. The perception of positivity is different for everybody and these two go to completely different places to distract themselves and try to stay upbeat. They talk about the impact of having positive people around you, what they do to pull themselves out of a negative place and how sometimes being positive is just trying to hurt a little less. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
April 29, 2020
It’s officially been a year since we launched the podcast! If you’re new to the show or want to learn a little bit more about your hosts Theresa and America; they answer five questions so that you can get to know them a little bit better. Those questions are: What are you most proud of? What’s your favorite thing to do to relax? What’s one word your friends would use to describe you? What’s one word you’d use to describe yourself? What’s your favorite condiment? We appreciate everyone who has listened and joined us on this journey together. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
April 22, 2020
Theresa and America are talking about the benefits of owning pets and the effects on your mental health. One is a pet owner and the other one is not so they both dive into their current situations and all the pets they’ve owned throughout their lives. Pets can be a real companion in life but finding the pet that matches your needs is key. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
April 15, 2020
Theresa and America talk about the correlation between body pain and mental health. They explore how their pain comes on, how it’s progressed with age and what the causes may be including stress, lack of sleep or gaining weight. You can’t get rid of your physical pain if you don’t work through your emotional pain; we can only help others until we help ourselves.
April 8, 2020
Theresa and America are joined by Caren Howard who is the Advocacy Manager for Mental Health America and the three of them discuss how to push through a crisis. Caren shares how she felt stuck and how she eventually got motivated to do her work. They talk about adjusting to this new reality, honoring the grieving process during a crisis and the importance of vocalizing your feelings. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
April 1, 2020
Nothing works anymore. Most of us are having a hard time coping during this time and America and Theresa are no different. They discuss how their brains are handling this stressful environment and how they are trying to adjust, how it’s critical to try to be aware of what your limit is and the benefits of setting up a schedule or routine. Every coping skill you’ve learned along the way is now put aside while you try to just manage but you are not alone. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
March 25, 2020
A lot has changed since America and Theresa last recorded and they talk about how they are dealing during this pandemic. There is a discussion about ways in which people feel trapped in this and in other times of crisis and how people's self-care routines have shifted. They both share how they are coping during this time, the stress of feeling isolated and Theresa’s concept for her “bag of flour.” To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
March 18, 2020
Theresa and America share the ways in which they are critical of themselves and how others can pick up on those feelings. They talk about how that attitude affects the ones around us, how criticism looks from their perspective as women and how the self-criticism can become a habit. Theresa talks about what she beats herself up about the most, America gives examples of what her critical voice sounds like and how they try to silence that nagging voice in their head. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
March 11, 2020
America and Theresa discuss the struggles that come with dealing with grief. They get into the different stages of grief and how you can grieve more than just death. Theresa recalls the first time she dealt with grief, America talks about the experience of loss that came with her divorce and the difference between healthy and unhealthy grieving. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
March 4, 2020
Why can’t I have that? America and Theresa talk about the mind trap of comparing yourself to others. The two of them talk about their experience comparing themselves to others and ways in which they try to shift their focus. They warn about the certain dangers in social media, why we need to focus on those particularly jealous feelings and concentrate on what it is that you may want or could be lacking but most importantly they emphasize trying to honor the best parts of who you are. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
February 26, 2020
America and Theresa breakdown what it means to be lonely and the difference between being alone and feeling loneliness. They share moments where they’ve felt lonely in their lives, the value of finding your “go-to person” and attempting to discover some connections outside your friends’ circle. If you do experience loneliness you have to run a self-check and see if you can possibly improve your situation and make the time to make new friends; be brave and be open. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
February 19, 2020
If you’ve ever thought about going to a support group America and Theresa talk about what to expect when attending. They’ve both ran support groups, been a part of them online and Theresa enjoys in-person groups so they discuss the value and significance in support groups. They squash some common misconceptions, Theresa shares a turning point in her life attending a group and they go over the many forms of support groups. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
February 12, 2020
Theresa and America talk about managing how to live with a mental health condition and how you can deal with it in the workplace. How do you disclose that you’re struggling with your mental health because it could possibly affect your work? They get into the specifics. Focus on your work environment, find a co-worker you can talk with honestly and familiarize yourself with your company’s policy on mental health. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
February 5, 2020
America has two guests on from MHA: Emily Skehill (Peer Advocacy, Supports, and Services Associate) and Whitney Ball (Marketing and Outreach Manager). The three of them have a candid conversation on what it looks like when they get into a funk and the impact it has on their everyday lives. They talk about the differences between just being in a funk and being depressed, how they try to turn things around when they’re feeling off and how vulnerability is key. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
January 29, 2020
They both offer two different perspectives on couples therapy: America has been to couples therapy before and Theresa is in the process of going to couples therapy. Theresa voices her concerns as she prepares for couples therapy and America gives her insight on what to expect. They talk about the importance of finding a therapist that fits for you as a couple, trying to find a common goal to get out of therapy together and the benefits of learning how to communicate better. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
January 22, 2020
America and Theresa both try to practice positivity but they definitely struggle with it at times and so do many others. They talk about the effects of positive psychology and their personal interpretations of it, how they both have used post-it therapy and how they balance their dark senses of humor with positivity. If you’re working on being more positive, seek out the things that make you happy; find your joy. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
January 15, 2020
Right before they were about to record the podcast Theresa started to cry so the two of them explore Theresa’s current emotional state and why so many struggle with crying all the time. Crying may come with shame and vulnerability, but they talk about how sometimes feelings must come out because there’s no other place for them to go. When you feel like you’re about to cry, try to figure out why you’re crying, start to work through some of those things that made you feel overwhelmed and do not beat yourself up. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
January 8, 2020
Theresa and America struggle with finding balance in their lives. They give tips on how they try to balance their lives and how they attempt to reclaim the space in their schedules. Theresa shares the table metaphor, America explains why she no longer expects to find “true balance” for herself, the significance of self-care and how finding balance impacts your mental health.
January 1, 2020
America and Theresa speak on why it’s difficult for some to get over issues that have happened in the past. They explain the importance to try to get to a place of acknowledging the issue, processing through those feelings and trying to work to get past them. Share with a friend, go online anonymously, write in a journal, start a podcast, whatever you do; your story has value so go tell your story and fight in the open. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
December 25, 2019
There are a lot of misconceptions around therapy and Theresa and America are here to clear the air. They talk about the process of finding the right therapist and how it’s like dating; plus the significance of figuring out what you want out of it. They both share their personal experiences of going to therapy for the first time, the importance of research beforehand and how they both went about cutting ties with therapists in the past. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
December 18, 2019
Theresa and America are joined by Matt and all three of them have a discussion about their own personal struggles with their body image. Matt gets candid about his journey as a food addict and the guilt and shame that comes with that. They talk about some solutions such as attending groups like Overeaters Anonymous (which you can also do online), practicing self-compassion, attempting to have a healthy relationship with food and to wrap it all up Matt has an encouraging breakthrough. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
December 11, 2019
Attempting to get better is hard, especially when having to get in touch with your feelings and America and Theresa can certainly relate. They both picked up some bad habits as a kid when communicating feelings and they are now putting in the “ninja work” to try to break those patterns. The journey of emotional healing is hard but along the way you try to collect the tools that help better prepare you for the future. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
December 4, 2019
America and Theresa are joined by Matt Gleason who is part of MHA's Oklahoma affiliate. Matt has dealt with depression, and the racing thoughts that comes with that, since he was a kid. Matt wasn't able to finally slow those thoughts down until later in life with the help of therapy, meditation and medication. The three of them discuss their racing thoughts, certain triggers, how they try to slow down their thoughts and how important it is to fight in the open. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
November 27, 2019
America and Theresa walk through what the definition of the word guilty is and what it means to feel guilty. When it comes to mental health and negative thoughts it is important to understand what is biological and what is environmental. When these thoughts occur ask yourself: What happened? How does it make you feel? What do you need to do? To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
November 20, 2019
America explores the idea of people who like being sad with two individuals who feel comfortable in that space: Theresa and Sachin Doshi. Some people feel at ease with the familiarity of sadness because it delays the process of working on yourself to get to a place of feeling better. If you have any thoughts on this subject or if you’re experiencing this as well email us: podcast@mhanational.org. To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit mhascreening.org
November 13, 2019
Theresa and America both struggle to talk about their feelings but they’re working through it and are still learning how to get better at it. It’s hard to come up with the words when you have to explain your feelings but understanding why they are happening is key. There are tools online to help you identify feelings but what’s helpful is creating a habit; that way the first thing you do when you have a big feeling is to learn how to stop it before it gets to a bad place.
November 6, 2019
Emily works in the Peer Advocacy, Supports and Services Department at MHA and she also lives with depression and anxiety. At one point in her life Emily didn’t want to go to therapy so we follow her through her journey of when she realized she had anxiety at a young age and where she’s at today. It took some time for Emily to find a therapist that worked for her but she did some research and tried out different therapists until she found someone she was completely comfortable with. Think about what you want out of therapy. Think about how you can make yourself feel better and how you can have someone else help you with that? To take a mental health screen, or to find mental health information and resources, visit: mhascreening.org
October 30, 2019
Theresa and America have a conversation about how medications work and how sometimes when you’re prescribed a medication the side effects could make you feel worse than before. When first taking a new medication sometimes the side effects don’t pop up right away, you have to give it some time to reach a therapeutic level. You do what’s best for you, you know your body better than anyone so keep track of any time you feel something out of the ordinary and tell your doctor.
October 23, 2019
They talk about the complicated topic on why we feel selfish, how to determine if you’re being selfish or not and how it relates to our mental health. Are you more of a giver or a taker? Have compassion, take care of yourself, be careful about judgment statements, lean on others and find someone you can check with to see if you are being selfish or not.
October 16, 2019
Everyone should try to get help from their families but during the times where your loved ones didn’t or couldn’t facilitate your needs, America and Theresa give you options for outside help. Making that important step toward seeking help is crucial and if you’re a young person that next step could be scary. Go online and arm yourself with information, find local supports (like warmlines or online forums), seek out local in-person support groups to try to connect with other people who are also struggling and if you are going to be seeking professional services you should prepare yourself to share that with your parents.
October 9, 2019
Theresa rejoins America to discuss the ways in which we are hard on ourselves and how we can try to turn those negative thoughts around. It’s easier for most people to rely on those negative emotions, especially when looking inward, but it is vital to attempt to break the cycle. They both talk about how they are hard on themselves but how they’ve learned forgiveness, acceptance and love.
October 2, 2019
America is joined by MHA’s Director of Development Sachin Doshi to explore the common sentiment of feeling lonely in a crowd. Sachin shares a recent encounter where he felt the pressure to connect with others and gives examples of shortcuts on how he tries to insert himself when he’s feeling social anxiety.  If you are feeling lonely in a crowd, odds are you’re not alone. It helps to try to find someone in that space to be lonely with together but be patient because not everyone is comfortable being in social situations, it takes work.
September 25, 2019
Theresa and America discuss their own personal battles with attempting to get motivated and how they try to push past that lack of desire to get anything done. In order to get motivated you need to have a desire, ability, reason and needs. What are yours? Getting motivated is a mixture of taking action and dealing with the thoughts that get in your own way.
September 18, 2019
Theresa speaks with Princess Asia and Mario to talk about their personal experiences with pressure and expectations. As former athletes, these two best friends found commonalities in their sports backgrounds and consistently connect their struggles and experiences to their playing past. They talk about mental health in sports and just everyday life plus they give insight on how they developed the confidence to overcome their personal pressure and expectations.
September 11, 2019
Theresa is joined by Nathaniel who is the Associate Vice President of Policy at Mental Health America and also a person who lives with insomnia. They both discuss their current and past relationships with sleep and how anxiety and depression play an integral part in sleep patterns. They chat about sleep recommendations and what techniques work for them and what doesn’t; it takes time to find your sleep solutions but it is also important to let go of your sleep expectations.
September 3, 2019
Theresa and America are not having a good day so they use this platform to try to talk out their feelings. They are both working through some raw emotions on some recent tragedies while also dealing with their own personal troubles and it all seems like too much. They pose the question: how can you get mad at the world when you’re the one setting the expectations? Bad feelings come from some misalignment with expectations so they both are just trying to take one thing at a time and talking it out on the podcast helps.
August 28, 2019
On this episode we discuss the feeling of not belonging, not fitting in or having trouble connecting with people. Making friends at any stage of life can be difficult so Theresa and America talk about their own personal struggles to develop friendships throughout their life and how they’ve tried to be better. The process of beginning to feel like you belong is the process of trying to identify who you are.
August 21, 2019
There is a common comment about how people struggle with having an open dialogue about their mental illness because those who are close to them don’t believe them. People might have difficulty with their diagnosis or might not even know what is specifically going on within them which makes it hard to articulate that to other people.  The way in which you communicate is important when speaking to others about your mental illness and no matter how the other party might react to it, we believe you.
August 14, 2019
Last episode Catherine took us through her mental health journey and on this podcast she shares her experience of what it’s like to go to the hospital. She describes the events leading up to her hospital visits, what it was like during her stay and the benefits of the entire experience. Catherine gives her opinion on when it is a good time to go to the hospital and the importance of setting up these small day-to-day goals for her mental well-being.
August 7, 2019
In this episode Theresa and America are joined by Catherine Reynolds who “thrives with” Bipolar Disorder.  She talks about what it’s like living with Bipolar and how she has succeeded in spite of it. Catherine shares her mental health journey including how she first revealed it to her family, how she got connected with a therapist, weighing her treatment options and ways in which she tries to identify her triggers.
August 1, 2019
Theresa and America tackle a topic they are passionate about because they personally struggle with stress eating. They explore the cultural significance and emotional relationship around food and also the rituals people have around eating. America gives her tips on how she tries to curb the stress eating, the importance of portion control and why it’s key to identify what your triggers are and build in protective factors against them.
July 24, 2019
America and Theresa take on the topic of differentiating between a person who is bipolar or just being moody.  They discuss two important factors which is mania and euphoria and they break down what each mood might look or feel like. If you think you may have a problem you should talk to a professional to figure out what your next steps might be and seek help as early as possible.
July 17, 2019
What is the difference between being sad and being depressed? America and Theresa discuss the warning signs when your sadness crosses over to depression. They also give some advice on what you could do if you are in these unhappy states, how they deal with their personal bouts of sadness and how you could attempt to turn it around.
July 10, 2019
On this episode we talk about the internal question many struggle with about their mental illness: why me? Negative thoughts can be destructive because mental illnesses happen for countless reasons so sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint an answer. You have to come to terms with it, understand and accept it and allow yourself to feel it so seek help and get support.
July 3, 2019
It’s a scary topic for a lot of people but it’s a necessary conversation to have for Theresa and America. There is a difference between thoughts of death and contemplating suicide; it’s vital to find that line that separates the two. Theresa finds comfort in being open about her thoughts on death and why they suggest checking in with someone is important.
June 26, 2019
Theresa is joined once again by Kelly Davis to chat about cognitive distortions or as they put it: "stopping stupid thoughts." They both share their personal familiarity with thoughts that are personally damaging and ways in which they’ve tried to improve on their process when those feelings occur. Recognizing the patterns is important but it’s not easy, it’s definitely a process.
June 19, 2019
This show topic is for those who are seeking help and how you might want to take that next step. Theresa and America discuss what that journey might look like and how every case is unique. They lay out a few different approaches to getting help on your own like self-care pieces, monitoring diet/exercise and how they affect your mood and ways to work through your emotional and environmental triggers.
June 12, 2019
America returns with Theresa to have a conversation about what people might mean when they say something like “I destroy everything.” The “destroying” action could be about coping skills or the act of lashing out but there are other ways of getting that release. They discuss their personal experiences with self-destruction and ways to attempt to curb that “rage monster.”
June 5, 2019
On this episode Theresa is joined by Kelly Davis, a member of the Peer Support & Peer Advocacy Department, to discuss the popular comment – “I Hate Myself.” They talk about where that comment stems from, the shame that follows those thoughts and their personal experiences with that feeling of hating themselves. They both give examples of how they’ve worked to get better by differentiating which voice is which, getting to know the pathways of the brain plus why trying to change is a brave action.
May 29, 2019
There is a connection between people that may use drugs and mental illness and also how mental illness may be impacted by the use of drugs; we talk about all that on this episode. The conversation is about some people’s state of mind and how they try to make themselves feel better by self-medicating. If and when you begin to see signs of a problem some of the most important steps are recognizing them and trying to accept them.
May 22, 2019
Mental Illness can take its toll on a person and some are looking for when it will ever stop, it's definitely not easy but it doesn’t have to last forever. For those that feel like their mental illness will never end America and Theresa offer some advice and explain that there is always an opportunity to get better. They talk about ways to find support, why there is no quick fix and the positive aspects of just accepting your "junk."
May 15, 2019
On today’s show, Theresa and America talk about how to approach the topic of your mental health problems with others and the importance of not feeling alone. Choosing who you talk to is key and finding out what you need is dependent on who you talk to. They also discuss how to prepare yourself for that conversation, some advice on how to have that talk but emphasize how finding support is vital on the road to getting better.
May 8, 2019
Once someone realizes something is going on inside of them that is outside of their “normal”, what’s next? Theresa and America go over some possibilities to help you get to that next stage of making the choice of trying to get better.  Who can you talk to...Friends? Family? A Therapist? Whatever decision is made you ultimately have to choose you every day.
May 2, 2019
We discuss an article that was written for the website about the popular question people often ask: “Am I Crazy?” We explain what that evens means, why people might google that phrase and if that’s a normal feeling to have. We talk about mental health problems, signs of reoccurring issues and we try to give our best answer to the question.
May 2, 2019
Join Mental Health America members America Paredes (Associate Vice President of Partnerships & Community Outreach) and Theresa Nguyen (Vice President of Policy and Programs) for our premiere episode of the “In The Open” Podcast. They give a brief overview of the organization and describe what they try to accomplish with their work. We get to know the co-hosts as they share a little bit about themselves and how they both got involved with MHA.
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