This section includes pages on how to be happy and how to lift depression and feel better very quickly. There is also a detailed description of The APET model and how it can help you to take control of our own mind and use it effectively rather than letting it use you.
If you are stressed, anxious or just need to calm down, you can learn about how to meditate. You might like to try the guided meditations on this website.
There are pages on how to keep your cool, with some sensible strategies for coping with anger (your own or other people's) and how to keep it real - how to recognise when your take on reality isn't as helpful as it could be and how to update your mental maps if you choose to.
An important thing to remember about mental health is that it's not an either/or situation. While mental health professionals have spent phenomenal amounts of time and resources on classifying and categorising different types of mental illness and then labelling and pigeon-holing every unhappy or unconventional soul who walks through their door, people are not either "normal" or "mentally ill", we are all unique individuals and subject to change.
It's probably more useful to think in terms of a continuous spectrum, a kind of sliding scale with profound mental well-being and emotional balance at one end and the depths of misery and confused, distressing thoughts at the other. At any given time, all of us are in a state somewhere along this scale and we slide up and down it to varying degrees. Most of us have our good days and our off days, some of us slide up and down in a more dramatic fashion than others (and are told that they are suffereing from "bipolar disorder") and some spend considerable amounts of time at the rough end and find it difficult to engage with the world.
Wherever any of us are on this scale, I believe that there is a lot that most of us can do to help ourselves to improve our situation and this does not always have to involve the use of medication. In fact there is a lot of evidence to suggest that, while they can be helpful in some circumstances, the over prescribing of drugs, including anti-depressants and antipsychotics, can do more harm than good. Go to the Human Givens Institute website and read back issues of the Human Givens Journal for some interesting articles about this if you are interested.
Personally, I feel that labelling people can be counter-productive in many cases. Feeling a bit down allows us an opportunity to get back up again and remain in control of our lives, whereas being labelled as "clinically depressed" or "bipolar" can make us feel helpless, hopeless and somehow "broken" and in need of being mended, and also ready to place our trust in people in white coats handing out bottles of pills.
Having worked for many years in partnership with several Mental Health Trusts, and having trained as a psychotherapist, I have come to the conclusion that empowering people to help themselves to improve their mental well-being is often preferable to labelling them and dosing them up with medication that they may become addicted to, which may cause unpleasant side effects while they are taking it and lead to more problems down the line when they eventually stop taking it.
I spend most of my time these days helping people to be happy, to achieve their potential and to spend more time at the top end of the scale of mental and physical well-being. That's one of the main reasons why I teach Tai Chi and meditation. It's why I lead discussion groups such as "Mysteries of the Mind", and it's why I have created several websites.
I have also written several free eBooks, including:
How to Transform Your Life with the Life Ladder Exercise and How to Find Success and Fulfilment by Doing What you Love to Do
You can download these as PDF files from the page called life
A lady I know summed it up very well recently. When I first met her, she couldn't stop crying and told me she had never been happy. Some time later, she told me that she had experienced a strange feeling while walking round a supermarket and had suddenly realised that she was happy. Now she tells me that she can't remember what it was like to be unhappy. She had not received any drugs, consulted her GP or received any kind of therapy. All she had done was join a Tai Chi class and make some friends.
That's why I do what I do. That's why this website is here.