Hey! Yes, you! Thanks for being here, you're great!
If you know me, you know that I like a drink or three. Well I'm going to be one of those really annoying people that high-roads through the whole of January by giving it up. I know, sickening. But bear with me, there's a good reason.
Working in the technology and media worlds, I've seen many of my peers struggle with mental health. It's a sad fact that, particularly as men, we very often don't talk about it.
Some guys convince themselves that stress is a sign of weakness; others, that depression is just part of the general ups and downs of a tough career. I've seen colleagues self-medicate with alcohol, or suffer in silence whilst they try and hold it all together. (Spoiler Alert: neither of these are good strategies).
But I've also seen the immense benefits of talking about these issues. I will chat about the positive experiences I've had with psychotherapy and coaching to anyone who wants to listen. I've had friends pour their hearts out over a lunch (or a drink, ironically) and realise for themselves that they need to take steps to support their mental health. I'm a big believer that we all need to get better about acknowledging, talking, and treating these issues, and helping people realise that there is no shame in getting help when you need it.
It's well documented that alcohol is a depressant and can exacerbate mental health challenges, so, for January, I'm giving it up and raising money to support CALM, the Campaign Against Living Miserably. It's a charity that encourages men to get help with their mental health. Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 45, and CALM is working to try and change that. (I mean, not to make something else, like, way better at killing men. That would be evil). There's 31 days in January, so my target is £20 a day.
I'd really appreciate it if you would support me doing this. Because it's going to be bloody hard. But, like, totally worth it.