I have learnt to have a Safety Plan which includes
to seewhat are my warning signs and symptoms when things 'get out of whack'. Also steps to take when I am feeling distressed. Living in a self-contained one bedroom unit has taught me a lot of things. Things like recognising when you're feeling your symptoms are getting too much of you and you need to contact the nursing staff for help. I go to the exercise programs here, and they really work you hard. I have learnt to enjoy it actually. So far I enjoy the 24/7 hour support and learning to be an independent person like how to do budgeting, learning about healthy food cycles and diet, cooking classes, every week. My favourite part (or one of them) is doing art at the rehab place. There are HEAPS of things to do in my mental health recovery, and this place has given me so many options to help with that. I am so so grateful to have this sort of support.
What one special thing I enjoy the most out of this place is meeting others who have mental illness/s like me and learning about their story and getting to know them. Some have been diagnosed with Schizophrenia, Depression, Anxiety, OCD etc.
Every oneis at a different stage of their recovery from me and there's no such thing of "Who's better?" and comparing their skillsets to mine. I respect everyone is at a different place in their recovery than mine. I have made some wonderful friends here, and some of them are the most beautiful people before I've ever met. And I don't mean 'beautiful' by exterior kind.
Mental Health Resources
3847 1058 A wonderful community mental health club house which supports all different kinds of mental health support. There are scheduled activities every day for each month - wide range of different activities include yoga, bush walking, and many more. I became a member, and worked a few times in the hospitality unit. I wasn't expected to do everything "fast" and "right". I could go at my own pace, and volunteer for as long or short as I can. I love that I am not rushed. This is why Stepping Stones is so supportive for those in mental health recovery. I always felt welcomed by all the other members too. It's just a very good environment to be in.
1800 737 732 24/7 National Sexual Assault, Domestic Family Violence & Counselling Service. I have called this service several times for the rape trauma I faced in the past. This is a very wonderful service, and although I have only used the telephone counselling service several times, the qualified professionals were always very compassionate and helpful. It helps to have a pen and notebook ready before calling, as they tend to give good, practical tips on how to manage the problem you're having at the time. Highly recommend this service.
13 11 14 Lifeline - Available 24/7. I noticed the times I was in distress and called, the calls were confined to a maximum of half an hour or so. It's good to know someone who can listen. This is a free dial call, and treated with full confidentiality. You don't need to mention your name, but depending on the circumstances, they may ask where your location is. I found this service to always be extremely helpful. The telephone volunteers are fully trained, and know what they are doing.
Acute Care Team (24hr QLD Mental Health Support)
1300 642 255 (also known as 1300 MH CALL) - I use this service as an existing patient with the PAH Mental Health teams as I was an in-patient at the hospital. You have the option to speak with a Mental Health Clinician. I found the clinicians generally helpful. I have a long history with the hospital, and they can easily bring up my file - as long as I say who I am. Sometimes I use this line to check on my future appointments with the team.
Online Forum Support
The online forums is a great initiative by Beyond Blue. The forums are fully moderated, and there are Community Champions (title based on their post count) there but they are real people who have gone through traumatic experiences in their lives, and volunteer their time and help on the forums. There are different sections for different topics around mental health such as; Depression, Relationships. There's also a forum for Young People to share, which I'm interested in. If you first stumble upon the forums, I recommend you not to read everything, as it can be easy to get caught up in it all (or maybe just me personally); but start off reading the guides, especially sticky threads to get a feel of that particular section.