Mental Health Focussed: Poshey Aherne

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Light Life Learning had the pleasure of a cupán and a chat with Tralee’s passionate mental health fundraiser, Poshey Aherne. Although he’d rather water than tea. Poshey set up Darkness into Light in Tralee and also Walk for Life, Kerry and when he is not working can often be found running marathons, swimming in baltic seas or cycling – all for the love of mental health charity and prevention of suicide. Here’s what he told me:

What inspired you to get involved in fundraising for mental health and suicide prevention?

Everyone is affected by mental health or has lost someone to suicide. I have lost a number of friends myself. It’s a sad fact that everyone is affected and that ten people are lost to suicide in Ireland each week – eight of these are men.

Tell us about some of the projects you are involved in at the moment.

I’m back at Jigsaw Kerry, where it all began for me. Such an amazing charity, who always made me welcome and at home when I work with them. It’s charities like Jigsaw who appreciate what you do, and that makes it worthwhile. I have a few other things up my sleeve but that would be telling 🙂

What do you find most rewarding about this work?

I have such a passion and fire in me to help charities that need more awareness and extra funding. When all the hard work and long months/days/hours are over, if someone is saved or has reached out for help because of me I feel happy.

What message do you have for people who would like to help too?

I’d never done an event before and didn’t know what was involved, but I got up and did it and it paid off. Charities are out there looking for help, from bag packs, to family events, any event really.

You said in the video (below) about your own experience of suffering anxiety, can you tell us more?

I only got diagnosed around a year ago with anxiety, I’ve had it for years but never knew that’s what it was. I’d feel shocking sometimes – over-thinking a lot of things, sweaty armpits, feeling afraid I’d fall over. Before going out I’d worry that I’d get sick with nerves. I don’t know why. The worst is feeling that I’m not good enough or that some people won’t like me. I’m sensitive. It gets hard at times, but I keep telling myself there are people worse off. Many have depression or have been hit by cancer. Anxiety attacks can leave you feeling helpless, but training and keeping positive definitely helps.

How do you look after yourself? Any mental health tips you can share with us?

About three years ago I got into fitness. I was never fit in my life, but a friend asked me to go running with him. I never looked back. It changed my life for the better. I think diet and exercise are the key to good mental health. Even a daily brisk walk for thirty minutes can do wonders.

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What advice would you give to people out there who are suffering?

My message for the last two years has not changed and won’t change. I’ll keep drilling it out and long as I can: Never suffer alone in silence. Isolating yourself is the worst thing you can do, it only gets worse that way. If you had a broken arm you would go ahead and get support to get it fixed.

The same applies to people with mental health problems. When your mental health is bad you need help to get better and fix yourself. There are so many organisations out there who do amazing work. Jigsaw Kerry, Pieta House, Samaritans and lots of individual counsellors who will guide you on the right path to getting better. It’s okay not to feel ok, and it’s absolutely ok to ask for help. Remember that.

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Energy Vampires

Energy Vampires

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Disclaimer

What are energy vampires? Well, my understanding of the term means someone who drains your energy. It might not be just you, they might be a ‘serial drainer.’ Pay attention, however, if this is happening to you, there is a learning for you.

I don’t particularly like the term energy vampire anymore, however, I heard it the other day and thought it fun to explore. It’s a label after all. It conjures up negative judgement about the person. Energy vampires are symptomatic of simply not feeling able to access energy by yourself. Perhaps we have all acted in that way at times, to some degree.

So what do we do when we are confronted by somebody playing the role of energy vampire? First, look at yourself, and your energy. If it feels as though your energy has been sapped, zapped or stolen, why is this? Have you got a leak somewhere? A leak is my own term which implies not taking good care of your energy body. Boundaries, as mentioned below, often comes into it.

Well, my learning traditionally was to surround myself in a protective blue bubble of light, perhaps ask Archangel Michael to help shield me from this person. I still like to do this, but I also learned new ways. I don’t need to protect my energy since there is a never-ending supply to which I am always connected. Remember this always:

There is a never-ending supply, plenty to go around for everyone.

Boundaries: Perhaps you are left feeling drained after you meet this someone because you don’t have good boundaries with them. The feeling of being drained is caused by this conflict within you. You know you have let yourself down when you were talking to this person somehow. You have allowed them to put on you, in some way. The learning here is to have better boundaries.

  • Don’t agree to do favours or jobs that don’t feel right to you. Instead, politely and firmly refuse. You don’t have to explain why.
  • Don’t allow friends/family/neighbours to extensively offload their problems and woes every time you speak, this is unbalanced. You are not their rescuer. If they need to work with a professional, suggest this to them.
  • If someone is taking up too much of your time and it’s hard to get away, politely excuse yourself.
  • If someone makes you feel uncomfortable in your gut when you talk to them, politely move away from the conversation and if possible the area.
  • Check for energy leaks, as in, what is the learning here for me in taking care of my energy body? Am I being too open with this person when that doesn’t feel right?

Replenish yourself if you are feeling drained and associate it with another person. Do Energy EFT to feel better fast. Set-ups could include: ‘more energy,’ ‘replenish,’ ‘good boundaries,’ or whatever it is you feel you need. Check yourself on the SUE scale and if you are in the minuses you can do a de-stressing round first, such as tapping on the word ‘peace,’ or ‘relax.’

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About the author: Susan Browne helps people to feel great in their energy and achieve their goals through Energy EFT and she provides 1:1 Counselling, and internationally  Energy EFT sessions, and Life Coaching via Skype. Susan is an accredited counsellor with the APCP. Get in touch for more info.

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