In this episode we’re talking about mental health with our friend Maddie Phelps. Maddie is a Development Associate at Girl Scouts River Valleys writing grant applications that fundraise for the Girl Scout mission. Outside of work they spend their time writing, weightlifting, and hanging out with friends.
We had a great conversation with Maddie about experiences we had with mental health as teenagers and now as adults. Like what it felt like to deal with things like depression and anxiety, what made things hard, and what helped. We also talk about how it got better as we got older, but that some things are still hard.
We’ll get into our own experiences with depression, anxiety, autism, and bipolar disorder, and how hard it sometimes was as kids and teens to live up to other peoples’ standards while dealing with really hard stuff internally. We’ll also talk about how it feels to be in different states of mental health and how exhausting it can be, or on the flip side feeling like a speeding bullet train or volcano and being able to take on anything, with not-so-great consequences later.
We’ve all got some personal things we’ve found that help us get through challenges— like using humor to cope, making our own accommodations that help make school and work settings easier to deal with, and finding people that get it and have our backs. We discuss our own experiences with things like medication and therapy and how they can be really helpful for some people, but that there are also other ways to cope and help yourself if there are barriers to accessing these options or if they just aren’t right for you.
Our takeaway— The most important thing for us is encouraging sustainable, healthy balance in our lives. If you’re dealing with some of these challenges yourself, find things that help you promote your own success, and people who you can be honest with and rely on.
Note: We’ll mention the terms mental illness and neurodivergence. So we’re all on the same page, mental illness refers to health conditions that affect thinking, mood, emotion, or behavior, and neurodivergence means having a brain that functions in a way that’s different from the usual norms in society.
Face to Face https://face2face.org/support/mental-health/
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
Want to connect with our team about thoughts and ideas, or to find out how you can be featured on Girls Pick? Contact us at girltalk.girlscoutsrv.org/contact