how to love yourself today in 10 steps (free DIY mental health self-care help)

*please read the five point disclaimer here* 🙂

this post is for all us folk needing help (tips, support, hacks, resources, pep talks, etc.) to maintain our health, for today, like, right now –
or in other words, this is to help you get through the short-term by trying some new solutions in the next few minutes.

i have no formal education in mental health (medical, psychiatric, or otherwise), so am only speaking here from my own experiences of spiraling into acute episodes, and what things have helped me survive to tell the tale.
most of this draws from the area of CBT – cognitive behavioral therapy – and my intention here is to offer up some handy resources because it is not easily available elsewhere.

the self-help info below is listed in no specific order, and some may apply better to anxiety attacks (if you’re looking for some words to relate to how you’re feeling, maybe you would enjoy reading this) or depressive episodes (if you’re looking for some words to relate to how you’re feeling, maybe you would enjoy reading this), but regardless
it will always be most helpful when you are better able to identify HOW you feel.
so, try moving away from vague words (like “good”, “mad”, “bad”) and try to be more specific in identifying what emotions are being felt because it helps with self-expression, which helps with diagnosis and treatment.
finally, not everything below is going to be of interest to you, so skip it if so.
hopefully, you’ll find something else here that works well enough…

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Online Zine Release Party – Mental Health & Animal Love

at long last, our release party date has been set!

~ Join us in celebrating the release of ZOOPHIL-PSYCHOSIS ~

This event is making space for conversations about mental illness & love for animals.
How do animal advocates cope with mental health stigma?
How do the chronically ill find support through non-humyns?
How can we learn to take pride in our sicknesses and our empathy for animals?

We are proud to feature a collection of different authors & artists who have contributed to making this zine so special.
So make plans to be ready to read the zine with us all when it is published online on March 13th, 2016.

We encourage people to be with friends and to engage with others on this event page, about mental health & animal love generally, but also the specific contributions within the zine.

disordered vegan eating

*please read the five point disclaimer here* 🙂

hi again!
self l

so this post is about eating, and how it relates to mental illnesses and disorders.
i am aware of how taboo subjects like eating disorders are, but then again so is mental illness & so is animal politics – and neither has stopped me from speaking my mind.
so why not mix all of these taboo topics together and see what happens??

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FAQ: why is your zine named “ZOOPHIL-PSYCHOSIS”?

i thought that word means a romantic/sexual love of animals.

shorter answer:
no it does not!
ZOOPHIL-PSYCHOSIS was a clinical diagnosis made up by the animal testing industry in 1909, to stigmatize and discredit campaigns opposing vivisection as “crazy” and “sick”.
the word describing a sexual attraction or sexual activity with animals is ZOOPHILIA.
longer answer:
“ZOO” is from the Greek zōon (ζῷον), and means “ANIMAL”, which we see in other words like “zoos” (those animal prisons), “zoophobia” (fear of dangerous animals), and zoology (scientific study of animals).
“PHIL” is from the Greek philia (φιλία), and means “LOVE”, which we see in other words like “philosophy” (love of wisdom), philadelphia (city of brotherly love), and philanthropy (love of humans).
“PSYCHOSIS” is again from the Greek ψυχή/psykhe/psyche (mind) and -ωσις/osis (a process or state; an abnormal condition), and arose as a term to distinguish disorders which were thought to be disorders of the mind, as opposed to neurosis, which was thought to stem from a disorder of the nerves.

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embracing our herstory of animal loving madness


*this is a written transcript of a video presentation available here with Closed Captioning*

hi my name is archie.
and this is Phoebe.
thanks for tuning in to my presentation.

so to briefly summarize what i am going to be talking about today – basically this is a presentation about mental health, mental illness, about identities of madness and how those topics interrelate with animal advocacy, animal defense, animal rights.

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vegans with anxiety

*please read the five point disclaimer here* 🙂

are you an anxious vegan?
okay – then this here is for you..

so right off that bat, i’m going to emphasize that i am talking about anxiety as a disorder and not the occasional, temporary anxieties that we all experience in life.  severe anxiety is more the kind of stuff that doesn’t go away and instead will often just get worse over time – leading to situations where it really interferes with your capacity to live life (thus the need for a word like “disorder” to describe it). so like how depression isn’t simply feeling sad now and then, when bad luck comes your way, having anxiety isn’t simply feeling stressed and worried when you experience conflict and big challenges.

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how to reach out to a friend with chronic illness

*please read the five point disclaimer here*

this is a guest post written by Sparkling Aura – for more of their wisdom, please click here.

Nothing is worse than suffering from chronic illness – except suffering alone.
There have been times in my life where I have felt so alone that I felt I could not go on. But we are never alone – someone always cares. Sometimes – often times – they just don’t know how to tell you they care. They don’t know what to say or how to say it.

The first part of this post will discuss this dynamic from my experience with a friend who died from cancer. Then I will move on to talking about how to reach out – both those who are suffering and those who want to be there for someone who is suffering.

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vegans with depression

*please read the five point disclaimer here* 🙂

are you a depressed vegan?
yay me too.
fun, right?

no, but seriously – it is an awful, awful mental illness.
it can be difficult to describe, especially when you are deep under its spell, but i will give it a shot right now – for people wanting to understand so as to be better support for their loved ones or for people who know this illness all too well but still find courage in learning from another’s experience and knowing that one more persyn is on this path somewhere with you too. and this can be really important for us vegans with depression, because we can be already well acquainted with feelings of alienation and hopelessness in this violent world.

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looking for more chronic vegans!

why hello there 🙂
if you identify as a vegan with chronic illness, and you’re interested in contributing (anonymously or not) to the blog series chronically vegan (link here!), then message ELK with a short sample of your writing ❤
our contact info is available on this link here.
we’re accepting about anything that connects veganism with chronic illness, so please don’t be afraid to express yourself the way you want to!
and the first blog post, about living chronically vegan, is available to read by clicking here!