Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Helping Ourselves



I was recently contacted by a fellow-fighter, Michelle Morgan. She too has a history of mental illness that was sucking the life out of her. Our journey's share quite a few of the very familiar milestones that one will see when they claw their way back to a life worth living. But this isn't about her story of survival, or my story of survival... 

Rather, 

It is about helping ourselves. Just like myself, Michelle was quite moved by how effective the skills set of DBT can be for a life worth living. Like myself, and many out there, Michelle wants to center her life on these skills and equally; she wants to share with others what she has learned. Which is something else I can relate to, the entire reason for this blog is to reach as many as I can to help shed some light on the darkness that comes with the unknown aspect of mental illness.

Each of us out there, once we see the light at the end of the tunnel, we want so badly to scream it at the roof tops, that there is a way out! We want anyone who has ever felt scared, alone, worthless, desperate, the list goes on...  we want them to know - that they are not alone! And more importantly, that there is a solution. 

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy is a solid basis for recovery! It works. It really does. But how to get it out there? How to learn it, teach it, so that is makes sense? How to make it accessible to so many that are in need? These are real issues that the mental health field face. DBT is not readily available to large areas of the globe, and those that do have access, it can be quite costly. Of course I am not suggesting that every one go rouge and learn this on their own. Mental health issues are very serious and there are many situations that need to be addressed with a professional. There is no substitution for that.

However, those of us that have been able to access these wonderful skills, those of us that have been privileged to be a part of a professional team that teaches these life altering and freeing skills - we want to share that knowledge. We want t help those that want to help themselves.

Not only it is our goal to help and share, but since we have seen the other side of our lives with these added skills, it is our greatest goal to remain in the healthful living side of things. We seek others to help sharpen our skills and we strive to find others, like ourselves, that we can bounce ideas and experiences off of with the intent to skill-build for ourselves and help teach others. It is a two-way street of benefiting from one another and growing from the skills. 

That is why My DBT Life offers peer-support groups twice a week and that is why Michelle has offered a peek at her new DBT workbook:

She has taken her skills with art, her desire to grow and learn and her drive to share and touch other's lives and combined them all into a unique workbook that uses a fresh, creative approach to the DBT skills that Marsha Linehan pioneered. 

Easy to understand concepts and pleasant, comforting art coupled with clear instructions for activities are just a few things in this workbook that caught my eye:


I, personally, am quite excited to work through Michelle's workbook and I am very excited for one of our groups to work through it together. Anyone reading my blog knows that I do not typically promote items for sale here. That is not my goal. However, in this case I felt compelled to at least give a shout out to it because her reason behind selling this workbook is the point of this post. 

We are actively helping ourselves. We are not rolling over and allowing our diagnosis to take over and control our lives. No, we boldly stand up to our challenges and seek to better ourselves, willingly giving of our time and energies to support a life worth living!

~MJ

Photos are all from "The Creative DBT Workbook," by Michelle Morgan www.michellemorganart.com