mental health resources


Hi friends! It’s Monday again, and I know you know what that means. It’s Mental Health Monday!

We cover everything under the sun here at Uninspired– from dating to TV recommendations to great vacation spots. But I feel it’s especially important to talk about mental health because twenty-somethings have got a lot on our plates. We’re expected to build our entire futures in this time. And we’re expected to enjoy life, because this is the prime of it. That just isn’t realistic. We’ve got to take care of ourselves, but often, that need to pretend we’ve got it all together gets in our way. We need others to give us hope that it’s possible.

Since I can’t relate to all of you individually, I’m not able to give you all hope the way I’d like to. Yes, I’m in the mental health field, but hope doesn’t live in my textbooks. Hope comes from reading a story about someone who has been through your situation and come out stronger because of it. And, y’know, lots of other places, but the one I said is the one I can actually offer you.

Today’s guest blogger is Jennifer, who runs a blog and contributes to several more. Her creative outlet has been instrumental to her recovery from depression, and she wants to talk to you about how that happened. Our hope is that you’ll be inspired to find a creative outlet that sustains you through your darkest times.

My guest blogger, Jennifer and I have a shared hope that you'll be inspired to find a creative outlet for your depression like writing, drawing, or playing music. She shares how it has helped her, and how you can get started with your own expressive hobby.


A creative outlet is an amazing way to cope with depression and anxiety, but sometimes it might not be enough. That’s why I compiled this list of mental health resources that I’m offering you for free. It’s full of hotlines for lots of different situations, as well as online counseling options through BetterHelp. BetterHelp is a great option for people who are struggling but don’t have enough time or money to visit a therapist’s office. Check it out and get a free 7-day trial with this link. And don’t forget to claim your list below!


The Benefits of a Creative Outlet

“Greetings to you all. I’m grateful for this opportunity to be a guest blogger on Nicole’s site. Mental health is an important issue and one that needs as much coverage as possible. I use every opportunity that I get to use my creative outlet and write about it. In this post, I’d like to share my background with depression and how I use my experiences to write and advocate for those of us who battle this illness. Together I believe we can eradicate the stigma and bring hope and healing to this generation.

I don’t know when depression first entered my life, but I do know when it hit me full force. It almost killed me.

I have always been what people consider “moody.” I am temperamental. Even as a child, I would get angry easily. I thought it was just my personality.

In addition to being easily angered, I would also have bouts of sadness. I wouldn’t even be sure why I was sad. I would just feel this overwhelming sense of gloom. This got worse during my teen years. I began to feel that I didn’t really fit in anywhere. Sure, I had friends, but I always kept a protective shell around myself. I didn’t want anyone to get too close.

I would go through periods where I didn’t want to go to school. It wasn’t the typical thing where nobody likes to go to school. It was more like I didn’t have the energy to get out of bed. I had such a hard time making myself do anything. I didn’t even want to go out with friends. I’d fake it and go through the motions just so people would leave me alone.

I dealt with the same issues during college. The stress increased, and my battle with insomnia began. I believed that I was messed up, but I did my best to keep everything hidden. I had routines that I followed so that no one would know the real me. It was exhausting, but somehow I managed and gained both a degree and a husband.

None of my plotting prepared me for what was coming.

Years of caring for my child with severe special needs broke down every wall I had built. I ended up in the kitchen prepared to take enough pills to end my life. Miraculously, my husband arrived home from work early and stopped me. It was the first step in my long journey of healing.

Starting that night, I spent a week in the psychiatric section of a local hospital. I saw doctors and therapists and got put on anti-depressants. I now see a psychiatrist and a therapist regularly. I’m thankful that I got help, but I wish I’d known sooner that I didn’t have to suffer in silence.


One thing that I had always longed to do was write.

Prior to my near suicide attempt, I had always been too afraid to share my thoughts and the words I’d written with others; however, after nearly losing my life, I found the courage to finally open myself up to the world. I began to write poetry, blog posts, and articles. I discovered writing to be cathartic, and this creative outlet has become a form of therapy for me. It has also connected me to others who battle depression, and they have reached out to me to thank me for sharing my story. People who have never experienced depression themselves thank me for helping them to better understand what it is like. I am thankful to be opening doors and breaking down barriers so that conversations about mental health can start taking place.

I encourage others who are diagnosed with mental illness to find a creative outlet, whether it be writing, painting, sketching, singing, dancing, or whatever speaks to you. You don’t have to be a professional or be the most talented; it is not about trying to be perfect. You will probably find, however, that you will improve with time. You will most likely find the creative process to be healing and helpful on your journey. I certainly have.Craftsy Unlimited FREE 7 day trial at Craftsy.com

Another thing that writing has done for me is to open up career opportunities.

In addition to my own personal blog at https://freeindeed-redkitchen.blogspot.com/, I am also an author at The Mighty (you can find my author page here: https://themighty.com/author/jennifer-smith-13/) and a contributor to How to be a Redhead (you can find my page here: https://howtobearedhead.com/category/author/jennifer-smith/.) I have also recently accepted the position as co-blogger of the Coping with Depression blog at https://www.healthyplace.com/. Look for my posts and videos soon. I am honored to use my voice to advocate for mental health awareness and also show a lighthearted side of myself.

Once again, I would like to say thank you for this opportunity to share my life with you. I hope that all of you will find a creative way to express your thoughts and feelings. I would love to hear from you, so please visit me at one or all of my sites. Remember: stay strong and keep fighting!

creative outlet

Have you ever heard of Schizoaffective Disorder?

Unless you’re in the mental health field, or know someone who suffers from Schizoaffective Disorder, you likely haven’t heard of it. It is often mistaken for Bipolar Disorder, Depression, and/or Schizophrenia, because they share common symptoms. Yeah, can you imagine how difficult it must be to live with a combination of those things? It is its own affliction, and it can be extremely stressful and scary for the people living with it, like our guest blogger today, Vickii. She blogs over at A Shieldmaiden Life.

Schizoaffective Disorder, according to the DSM-V, is categorized by hallucinations and delusions, and extreme mood swings if you’re in the Bipolar category like Vickii. She’s writing today not only to raise awareness about her illness, but also to urge you to not let stigma get in the way of getting healthy.

Mental health stigma is goin’ down.

Uninspired is all about helping women in their twenties live their best lives, even though they’re driving themselves crazy trying to build for their future. Unfortunately, a big part of that is mental health discussion, because that wild drive for success often leads to a lack of self-care, and a ridiculous idea that asking for help ruins the illusion that you’re perfect.


That’s the stigma weaseling it’s way into your mind. None of us are perfect. None of us have it all together, and pretending that we do leads to depression, anxiety, or worse depending on your situation. Sometimes, our obsessive need to appear perfect can lead to not getting help for very serious things, like alcoholism or, hey, Schizoaffective Disorder for example.

I can only imagine that if Vickii had read a series like Mental Health Monday when she was going through her darkest times, she would have felt more comfortable getting help sooner! Because that’s why I started this thing. I could’ve written Mental Health Monday all by myself, but hope doesn’t come from me spewing stats from the DSM and my psych classes. Hope comes from reading stories from real people who have been through what YOU’RE going through, and have come out stronger.

And honestly, you don’t have to suffer from Schizoaffective Disorder to be able to relate to this article. Vickii’s story is so relatable because it’s aimed at anyone who had struggled with asking for help. She asserts that you can do this, you might just need a little guidance or push from someone else. So, without further ado, I’ll turn it over to her.

Vickii, who was diagnosed with Schizoaffective Disorder, waited a long time before deciding she needed help. When she finally did, she realized that it quite literally saved her life. Not wanting anyone else to go through what she did, she made a list of mental health resources to share with you all today.

Due to the potentially triggering nature of these Mental Health Monday posts, I have partnered with BetterHelp online counseling services to assure that you have a next step to take if you find yourself overwhelmed by what’s going on in your mind. They match you up with a real, licensed counselor who can talk with you online about your concerns. So please, if you’ve been looking for a sign, consider this it, my friend! You deserve this help!

How to Come to Terms with Needing Help 

“One of the hardest things about having a mental health issue like Schizoaffective Disorder is admitting that there is a problem in the first place and getting the help you need. Often, we go about pretending that we can do everything ourselves and that asking for someone to help you is weakness. It becomes a never-ending cycle of hating yourself for who you are. The stigma behind mental health says that it’s not okay to not be okay. This is wrong. 

I first started seeing and hearing things about 6 years ago.

Whenever I spoke about it, people would look at me like I was crazy. I believed that I could actually see the atoms of things, and that I could see the future. See, writing it down, I realise how wrong I was, but when you suffer from hallucinations you truly believe they are real. 

Soon, I started becoming reckless. My moods would swing like a roller coaster. There were the ups which made me want to buy everything, even when I’d end up with no money, and I’d become extremely driven to do what I wanted. Then there were the downs– the self-harming and suicidal thoughts. 

It took a family intervention for me to admit I needed help. Seeing them worry made me snap out of it and think ‘I need to sort this out otherwise I won’t be here for much longer.” That was hard to admit.  

The first time I saw my GP about my hallucinations and mood swings I was terrified. I thought that they wouldn’t believe me or would simply say I was doing it for attention. I was ashamed that I couldn’t fix myself. Yet my GP listened and instead of what I expected, she gave me a load of leaflets on different management techniques including helplines, and reassured me that I wasn’t alone. She then set in motion for me to get the help I required. 

I was diagnosed with Schizoaffective Disorder…

…which is essentially Bipolar and psychosis (hallucinations). I was also found to have severe anxiety due to bullying I was experiencing in high school at the time.  Over a 4-year period I ended up seeing a wide range of people from doctors to specialist psychiatrists under the mental health service for teenagers where I was given medication along with cognitive behaviour therapy to help manage my hallucinations and moods. 

Getting that help saved my life. 

I’m not saying that lightly. It honestly did save my life. Now I have my dream job, a fantastic partner and friends and I’m closer than ever to my family.  

So, if you are struggling with your own mental health please know that it’s okay to admit you need help. Everyone requires a little push to get to where they want to be at times. First off, breathe. Write down everything you want to say to the GP or advisor and then seek comfort from a trusted friend or family member. Know that it’s okay not to be okay and that you matter to someone.  

After taking the first step into getting help, it gets a little bit easier each time. Each small step is another step towards being happier, to being able to manage life.  

If you feel like you have no one to talk to then please contact me or the following sites/numbers and know that it DOES get better. 

Mental Health Resources

Anxiety UK 

Mental health resources if you’ve been diagnosed with an anxiety condition. 

Phone: 08444 775 774 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5.30pm) 

Website: www.anxietyuk.org.uk 

Bipolar UK 

Next, we have mental health resources people living with manic depression or bipolar disorder. 

Website: www.bipolaruk.org.uk 


CALM is the Campaign Against Living Miserably, for men aged 15-35. 

Website: www.thecalmzone.net 

Depression Alliance 

Mental health resources for sufferers of depression. Has a network of self-help groups. 

Website: www.depressionalliance.org 

Men’s Health Forum 

24/7 stress support for men by text, chat and email. 

Website: www.menshealthforum.org.uk 

Mental Health Foundation 

Provides mental health resources and support for anyone with mental health problems or learning disabilities. 

Website: www.mentalhealth.org.uk 


Promotes the views and needs of people with mental health problems. 

Phone: 0300 123 3393 (Mon-Fri, 9am-6pm) 

Website: www.mind.org.uk 

No Panic 

Mental health resources for sufferers of panic attacks and OCD. Offers a course to help overcome your phobia/OCD. Includes a helpline. 

Phone: 0844 967 4848 (daily, 10am-10pm) 

Website: www.nopanic.org.uk 

OCD Action 

Mental health resources for people with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Includes information on treatment and online resources. 

Phone: 0845 390 6232 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5pm) 

Website: www.ocdaction.org.uk 


A charity run by people with OCD, for people with OCD. Includes facts, news and treatments. 

Phone: 0845 120 3778 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm) 

Website: www.ocduk.org 


Young suicide prevention society. 

Phone: HOPElineUK 0800 068 4141 (Mon-Fri,10am-5pm & 7-10pm. Weekends 2-5pm) 

Website: www.papyrus-uk.org 

Rethink Mental Illness 

Support and advice for people living with mental illness. 

Phone: 0300 5000 927 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-4pm) 

Website: www.rethink.org 


Confidential support for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair. 

Phone: 116 123 (free 24-hour helpline) 

Website: www.samaritans.org.uk 


Charity offering support and carrying out research into mental illness. 

Phone: 0845 767 8000 (daily, 6-11pm) 

SANEmail email: sanemail@org.uk 

Website: www.sane.org.uk 


Information on child and adolescent mental health. Services for parents and professionals. 

Phone: Parents’ helpline 0808 802 5544 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-4pm) 

Website: www.youngminds.org.uk 

Eating disorders 


Phone: 0845 634 1414 (adults) or 0345 634 7650 (for under-25s) 

Website: www.b-eat.co.uk ”


schizoaffective disorder