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My Mental Health Story in a Nutshell

Updated: May 21, 2019

Many of my clients are happy to begin working with me whilst knowing the bare minimum but I find that other client's really want to feel as though they know me a bit better before they decide to start working with me, especially mentoring and coaching clients. You will find much more information in my website, blog and within my Instagram as well.

Okay, so this is quite difficult to word which is why I allow clients lots of space to tell me their story that they need to; here goes: below is a bit more about my background with mental health and well-being & actually living a life that is authentic to me...

When I was very young, I experienced a traumatic death of someone I loved incredibly dearly, which wasn't handled in the best way by the adults around me (they did what they thought was best at the time), and it impacted on my world view perhaps more than it should have.

I developed rituals and these turned into many different types of obsessions and compulsions so that no one else I loved would die (of course that's impossible but as a child, it seemed as plausible as anything and I didn't exactly understand OCD then).

I really enjoyed learning and so I enjoyed that aspect of school until my best friend moved away and I just had a hard time after that - constant bullying (emotional and physical) that plummeted any confidence that I had. I had a much more pleasant time with adults and books.

loneliness, feeling alone, escapism, reading books, anxiety, OCD, depression, BD, self-help, mental health, mental wellness, mental wellbeing, CBT, counselling

My parents eventually found out about the bullying and made me take karate lessons which helped with my confidence and I stood up to the bully's from then on and was only ever bullied psychologically (no one taught me assertiveness until I got to high school), however, my sense of self worth was shot.

I had lots of friends but was at some point abandoned by them, like with my first friend and as an only child too, within me grew a deep loneliness and need to prove that I didn't need anyone.

Needless to say that I was left vulnerable for an abusive relationship and I was pretty much a doormat to anyone. Added to that, I lost the person I was closest to suddenly and unexpectedly.

By this point, the OCD was accompanied by generalised anxiety - I could have a full blown panic attack at any moment and this relationship was causing me to be depressed and now developing body dysmorphia from the psychological abuse. No one could ever love me, I was unworthy of love. No one actually liked me so why did I think anyone was my friend? ...

A lot of traumatic memories were building up during this time and I was so full of shame that I didn't dare tell anyone around me how I was actually feeling. I had grown up hearing quips that negatively stereotyped emotional struggles. So I became very good at compartmentalising things so that I didn't draw attention to myself and was able to put on the brave face for others.

frustration, life problems, sadness, hurt, loneliness, can't be myself, anxiety, depression, melancholia, self-help

Thankfully, that spark of curiosity about the world was never extinguished and I still engaged as best I could with my education. I took a class in 6th form where the teacher was actually present (in the here and now) and she noticed something "off" about me. She took me under her wing and guided me to begin overcoming my issues - she gave me hope and believed in me.

I realised that I could become the master of my own life and my self-esteem started to grow. I underwent CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) and did all of the self-help I could get my hands on & later had personal counselling.

Slowly and surely I regained control - altering the landscape of my mind to be a more supportive and beautiful place.

Whilst I would not describe myself as ever having been mentally ill as I was not clinical - I was technically functioning - I would describe my issue as being poor mental health. My view of myself (internal), others (external) and the world (global) was negative and warped. I was not going to be satisfied by dealing with the immediate issues - sorting my thoughts and actions out which counselling created space for. I needed to understand why these things had occurred, what was going on neurochemically, psychologically, physiologically and truly reappraise my story, which is what psychotherapy is about - going on that deep dive to self understanding & awareness.

Naturally, this led me down lots of paths, from the empirically scientific, philosophical and to esoteric and spiritual.

Now I help others with their own mental health and life issues to arrive at mental wellness and living more authentically which we can do when we understand ourselves. It's what I'm passionate about - know thyself. Then you can love yourself, give and receive true love from others and love your life <3

I truly believe you can live with mental wellness and all the beauty it brings - creativity, compassion, hope, optimism, patience, open-mindedness, focus, passion......... & I am here to support you on your journey using all the skills, knowledge and wisdom I have acquired. How can I support you today?

With much love and blessings,

Sophie xo

For further reading - see the blog post on my top recommended reading for self-help.

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