Take time to look up once in a while!

“Happiness is a state of mind. It’s just according to the way you look at things.”

Walt Disney

One common question I get asked all the time when I’m talking about my blog is “how do you find inspiration to write about all this stuff?”

Firstly, there is always a deep meaning behind every one of my published blog posts (there’s over 200 of them now!) and whilst it is not intended to be positive vibes everywhere, it is just how it has turned out, being a naturally positive person gives it direction which comes through naturally in my work. Secondly it helps to be passionate about the subject matter, you never know how you might inspire others through your experiences, this is something I never take for granted.

For my eagle eyed followers on Twitter, you would have seen that I am very in tune with what is going on around me, and you may have seen a couple of weeks ago, during a normal lunch break, inspiration struck me and it was a truly memorable experience!

I was walking through Rugby town centre, and I was met by a group of young people who were holding up boards with statistics relating to mental health, one lovely chap asked me if I’d care to write on his board about the one thing I like about myself. I struggled with the question and having recently suffered with my mental health, this was very tricky question to answer. He recognised my awkwardness at the question and along with his friend, they said that many people had struggled with this challenge, they then said that I seemed kind and had a lovely smile. Granted these are things I do like about myself but it took someone else to tell me something I should always be thankful for. It isn’t until someone tells you something like this, that you realise it’s value.

After I wrote on the board I walked into WH Smith and picked up Be Kind magazine, I thought it was rather fitting given the experience I just had and I went back to the office. Once I reached the office I reflected on how inspiring the group of young people were and was inspired by their efforts to positively inspire and bring smiles to their local community, so I left my sandwich on my desk and ran back out to see if they were still there!

I eventually caught up with them and asked about their work, they said they all had brushes with mental health and knew people affected by it, they said everyone will experience it and by generating awareness we may help reduce the amount of male suicides, get people talking and to tackle the stigma associated with mental health conditions.

I thanked them all for their efforts, told them how inspirational they were and to keep doing what they are doing, young people can get tarnished with a negative perception, but in this case, they gave up their time to help others, and this is definitely an act of kindness that I will never forget.

A huge thank you to Mariam Shah and the team at NCS partnering with Rugby Methodist Church, congratulations for your fundraising and community efforts. To those incredible young people, sorry I couldn’t share our group picture, but you guys are amazing, you inspired me and many others in our community to try and promote awareness to end the stigma, you should be so proud of yourselves and with your positivity, this will ensure you can achieve whatever you set your mind to, it was a pleasure meeting you.

Kindness is everywhere, you just need to look up from the smartphones and busyness of every day life to experience it.

So to carry on their challenge, ask yourself today, what qualities do you like about yourself?

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