Category: Mental Health Recovery

Let Your Inner Child Out to Play

Let Your Inner Child Out to Play

As adults we get stuck in the rut of duty; work, chores, etc…
Today, take some time just for YOU & Let your inner child out to play!!

©Sue Anderson, I.T.E., Positively Amazing You!™
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
Certified Peer Specialist, Certified WRAP Facilitator
An-ders-(S)on-shine, Silliness, Stories, Legends, Laughter & Love™
By perseverance the snail reached the ark. ~C.H. Spurgeon

Music that Heals & Inspires

Woman Listening to Headphones

 I LOVE music!!  I can be on the phone with a friend and moments into the conversation, I’m tempted to break out into a song that has suddenly popped into my head based on what they’ve said.  Sometimes I give into the urge, and if I’m lucky, THEY join in! Music simply speaks to my soul.  I’ve picked out a few songs that have always given me a lift…

 Lean On Me – “Sometimes in our lives, we all have pain, we all have sorrow…”
Hero – “And then a hero comes along, with the strength to carry on…”
You are Loved – “If darkness blinds you, I, I will shine to guide you…”
Feelin Groovy – “Slow down, you move to fast, you’ve got to make this moment last…”
When You Believe – “There can be miracles, when you believe, though hope is frail…”
I Can See Clearly Now – “Look straight ahead, there’s nothing but blue skies…”

There’s something about each of these songs that for me, has the ability to soothe, heal, and inspire.  Interestingly, when I first started writing this, “Feeling Groovy” was NOT one I’d considered including.  Like it or not, it persistently stayed STUCK in my head until I relented.  I think there’s a reason, as there is such a reason why each of the other songs made it on the page.

When I think about the song “Lean on Me”, I think… whoever wrote that song, HAS TO have known what it was like to feel pain and sorrow, what it was like to need someone to lean on in times of trouble.  I don’t think there’s a person around who doesn’t need such a person at some point, regardless of whether we THINK we do or not.

When I listen to the song “Hero”, I’m reminded that I have within myself the ability to be… the Hero that lives inside of me, and with that, I know that I can survive… and thrive…  Whoa! Watch me grow!!!

“You are Loved”, also known as “Don’t Give Up” is a song that expresses understanding on soooooo many levels.   It’s sung by Josh Groban & I have to tell you, I have a teensy crush on his voice.  He has a new song that I really like as well called “Brave”….  When I first heard “Brave”, it made me think about the courage it takes each of us to reach out for help in the face of what we don’t understand..

“Feeling Groovy”, reminds me, that I sometimes need to just slow down a bit, stop & smell the flowers, enjoy the moment, that sort of thing, Something I often forget!!

When I listen to the song “When You Believe”, I actually prefer to watch the video of the group Celtic Woman singing it…  It’s purely magical to me for some reason.  The song itself is a song of hope, belief that the dreams I have within me CAN be achieved.  This day, in a sense is part of that dream.

Now I have to tell you, the song “I Can See Clearly Now” provides a bit of a conundrum in that I have a certain passion for rain.  I’ve always loved a good thunderstorm, they in themselves I’ve thought were refreshing, however the more I’ve listened to the song, the more I realized this song isn’t so much about the rain being gone and blue skies…  It’s more about overcoming the obstacles and challenges of life that keep our spirits from shining bright.  When we get over that hurdle…  Oh what a bright, bright sunshiny day it is, despite the weather!

Where WOULD we be without obstacles, without challenges, without hurdles?  Painful as they are as we struggle through them, there is something to be found on the other side of each and every one… something amazingly wonderful and meaningful.  Persevering through and/or past them may make us wring our hands and shake our fists at the sky….  Until you hear the music…  the meaning… in the words that someone penned…

I truly believe we all have a song of sorts within us.  Do you know of a song that could be your life song, the words in it fitting so perfectly?  If you don’t have such a song already, what are some words that would embrace your life, the ups, the downs, the joys, the frowns?

Take a minute to share with us the songs of your life…  Perhaps in doing so, you might find something that soothes, heals, and inspires as well.

Music That Heals & Inspires
©Sue Anderson, I.T.E.  ~ 2013 ~ All Rights Reserved
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
An-ders-(S)o-shine, Silliness, Stories, Legends, Laughter & Love™
“By Perseverance the snail reached the ark” ~C.H. Spurgeon

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For every tragedy, there is a cause, one which determines how society defines, relates, accepts, rejects, condemns, etc.

More often than not the media’s first instinct in tragedies caused by others is to look first and foremost for mental illness as a key factor behind someones actions.

Media Sensationalism of Mental Illness has devastating consequences on those who, through no desire or fault of their own carry a diagnosis filled with shame, guilt, fear, and isolation.

I cringe everytime I hear or read the words “the mentally ill…”. This phrase alone casts those living with a mental illness into a group of unfortunate aliens of society. Startling when one considers that one in four persons have some form or another of mental illness.

Rather than casting a stone at mental illness when a tragedy caused by a person strikes, look first at the person, the human being. Consider that persons actions inhumane… and leave it at that.

Perhaps in doing so, healing for those living with a mental illness will become more acceptable, as those living in shame, isolation, or fear feel no condemnation or judgement in seeking the road to recovery, as any PERSON struggling with any sort of problem or illness should feel free to do.

Let’s work together to eliminate the phrase “the mentally ill” remembering those who carry a diagnosis are simply people first and foremost.

©Sue Anderson, I.T.E.
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
Certified WRAP Facilitator/Peer Support Specialist
An-ders-(S)on-shine, Silliness, Stories, Legends, Laughter, & Love™
“By perseverance the snail reached the ark.” ~C.H. Spurgeon

Sep 25 2011_0898

As a parent I was saddened to hear about the tragic deaths of schoolchildren in Connecticut. As a grandparent of two 6 year olds, I was even more horrified. It’s scary to think that our children are exposed to such violence.

One of my personal triggers (internal response to an external event) is watching news such at this, and my action plan (how I cope) during those times is to turn the news off. While visiting family this can be a bit of a challenge, so I’ve decided to use another action plan… writing.

During our travel to Illinois after first hearing the news, I was talking to my husband. I mentioned that “I can almost guarantee that the media is going to make this tragedy all about mental illness”.

One of our last stops before arriving at my Aunt’s was at a Nostalgia store. I remember seeing a sign there with a quote from The Wizard of Oz… “Nobody gets in to see the Wizard ~ Not Nobody, Not No How”. Driving away I related to my husband the irony of that sign as it relates to people seeking help, support, acceptance, treatment. People living with a mental illness have SOOOOOOOOO many obstacles to overcome; many of these only to be turned away.

Watching the news these past few days confirmed what I suspected. One commentator on Tuesday, after talking about the potential for training teachers & school staff, arming them stated “and what if one of those teachers suffers from depression?” Today the NRA spoke out saying “We need a national datatbase registry of the mentally ill”. His other remarks shocked me…. Talk of “deranged evil people, people who hear voices”. For a while I was just speechless…until I remembered that Wizard of Oz sign.

It seemed to me the NRA speaker was all for less restrictions on guns, more restrictions on persons with mental illness. I came to this conclusion based on his remarks, and what this registry he spoke of would mean for people diagnosed with mental illness. Increased Judgment Increased Stigma, Increased Isolation; Less people willing to talk about what’s going on and, less people willing to seek help. From my understanding from the commentary after the NRA press statement, The NRA is opposed to having any kind of national database registry of gun owners.

What many don’t realize is that persons who have a mental illness are far more likely to be a victim of a crime. I’ve heard less than 5% of crimes committed are by persons with a mental illness. That leaves 95% by others. Do people who have cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and such commit crimes? YES! Are those reported as such? NO! Why not? It doesn’t sell news. Sensationalism in the media needs to end.

No one is exempt from having a mental illness. No one asks for it, just as no one is exempt from or asks for cancer, diabetes, heart disease etc.

Look at the video games that are available, that kids are playing these days, listen to the music that our children are listening to; the movies that are made. I believe these pieces are a much more viable reason for such heinous crimes.

Years ago having a mental illness was hush hush. Many suffered in silence, the fear, shame, and guilt over a disease that no one asks for, but is judged for. Many felt alone and isolated. These days people are more open to talking and sharing. Mutual support vs isolation helps.

If you know someone suffering from depression, anxiety, or any other form of mental illness, reach out a hand of friendship. Let them know you care, that they are not alone. Listen without judgment to whatever they may be experiencing. Put yourself in their shoes. Ask yourself, if you were this person, how you would want to be treated. Remember, mental illness affects everyone differently.

©Sue Anderson, I.T.E.
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
Certified WRAP Facilitator/Peer Support Specialist
An-ders-(S)on-shine, Silliness, Stories, Legends, Laughter, & Love™
“By perseverance the snail reached the ark.” ~C.H. Spurgeon

Instigating Silliness


Wanna cause laughter,
Maybe even some fun,
I’ll pass along my secret to every-one…

This handy note could be posted near and far,
So grab some scratch paper & leave one on a friends car…

Sit off to the side, when you know they’ll come out…
Go the extra mile if needed, that’s what it’s really all about!! :-).

Sue Anderson, I.T.E.
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
An-ders-(S)on-shine, Silliness, Legends, Laughter & Love! TM
“By perseverance the snail reached the ark.” ~C.H. Spurgeon

The Enviable Power in the Productivity of Procrastination

“There is an enviable power in the productivity of procrastination which can 
withstand the most chore laden desires…. I call it, FUN!” ~Sue Anderson

Yesterday a dear friend of mine was looking for a reason to avoid doing something productive. It was a rather eloquently worded plea, and in my quest to respond, I thought “I CAN’T just say For Pete’s sake Procrastinate – that just would have been to boring!” So I started to type and came up with the quote above.

I must’ve thought pretty hard because I SWEAR my brain hurt, I mean I really had to Dig DEEP for that!! lol The bright side of this whole exchange, or so I thought, was that I wouldn’t have to hunt for a quote for today… which meant *I* could skip being productive & go straight to fun!! My brain on the other hand had other ideas & wasn’t finished with me yet…

So there I was ever so proudly having fun, posting my quote and the challenge I came up with for it on every Facebook page I could think of, when out of nowhere came “BLOG!!!!!!! You HAVE TO BLOG this one”. Which caused me to think some more and so here I sit, preparing a blog because I just could NOT allow myself to just blog the quote and challenge… Nope, No way, No how, wasn’t happening!

What IS it about blogging that causes my brain to kick into 6th gear, wanting to create the perfect masterpiece for someone to read. Does anyone else have this problem. Do you find it hard to post something short & simple? I was thinking about this “Keep it Simple” concept earlier yesterday as a matter of fact. I was at that point trying to come up with a better phrase than “Keep it Simple Stupid” because I really dislike that word…

Hmmm… do I dislike “simple” as well.. Could that be the key??

Hold on there, we’re not goin down those tracks today….

I’d be here forever… and you my dear reader, will either be in stitches or long gone…. So I’ll just Keep it Shortly Simple…. There, that’s what I came up with WHILE writing this blog…. The simple concept I’ll explore another day… In the meantime I’m going to take heart and head my own challenge…. Take THAT dear brain of mine!!

How ‘bout you? Are you up for this challenge: Find something productive to procrastinate over while withstanding all those chore laden desires – Be the envy of everyone & have a POWERFULLY FUN weekend!! 🙂

Well??? Hey, no worries if you don’t feel like commenting right now… I mean, that COULD appear chore-ish… unless of course you throw some POWERFUL FUN in there!!!

Here’s to the enviable power in the productivity of procrastination which can withstand the most chore laden desires…. FUN!!!

The Enviable Power in the Productivity of Procrastination
©Sue Anderson, I.T.E. ~ All Rights Reserved 2012
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
An-ders-(S)on-shine, Silliness, Stories, Legends, Laughter, & Love™
“By perseverance the snail reached the ark.” ~C.H. Spurgeon

“There comes a time in every rightly constructed boy’s life that he has a raging  desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure.”            ~Mark Twain


Think about what YOU consider to be a treasure today; Is it that souvenir bat or ball from a baseball game long ago? The teddy bear that you’ve had forever & couldn’t bear to part with? The locket from your great grandmother? The laughter in your child’s eyes? A letter from a long lost love? The feeling of joy from helping another person? The memory of a special day, or of a family gathering?  

Perhaps your treasure is still waiting to be discovered…  what might it be? Sometimes there are undiscovered treasures right before our very eyes, all it takes is for us to remove the blinders of busy-ness to notice, a       chirping bird at play, a butterfly landing, a rolling marble ;-),  a soft breeze, a beautiful sunset, etc…. 

Treasures looks differently to each of us and no matter what ours is;  even those we’ve yet to be discover, our hearts will swell whenever we see, or think of this treasure…  Even if we have NO CLUE what it is, there is still a yearning deep within for that treasure to be found.  

Picture that treasure waiting for you, waiting to be discovered; what happens, or will happen when you find it?  Do you let out a squeal or shout of joy?   Do you do a happy dance?  Do you grab hold of the closest friend to share the excitement you feel?  

Whatever it is, seize a treasured moment now…  do that happy dance, let out that squeal or shout of joy, grab hold of your closest friend and share whatever it is you treasure.  Perhaps, that friend, that dance, that squeal,  is the treasure…  

Seize the moment, Seize the treasure, Seize the Joy!

Share the Excitement!

 Image          Image          Image

I went on a treasure hunt today, found a few marbles, a shower floor, and a happy pup that trotted along behind me hoping for a treat.  What treasures did you find today??

Seizing & Sharing Joyful Treasures
©Sue Anderson, I.T.E.—All Rights Reserved , 2012
Certifiably Silly & Positively Amazing TOO!
An-ders-(S)on-shine, Silliness, Stories, Legends, Laughter, & Love™
“By perseverance the snail reached the ark.” ~C.H. Spurgeon