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A post-grad student reflects on the loneliness, shame, and culture of binge drinking that led to her alcohol abuse and eventual decision to get sober in college.

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In September, we’ll be focusing on one of the greatest joys in life: friendship.

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4 current and former college students reflect on the connection, community, and purpose that comes from being in school.

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How one senior in college learned that changing your mind and perspective in life can boost your personal growth.

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The more we understand our feelings surrounding change, the better we’ll be at embracing it rather than resisting it.

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The pressure to achieve certain goals by a certain age can set us up for disappointment when our lives don’t follow a cookie-cutter plan. In this essay, one writer explores how she learned to make peace with her present.

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To help you get through periods of flux with a little more ease, we outlined tips for navigating changes in your coping strategies, support, medication, and therapy.

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In August, we’ll be focusing on one of life’s most common experiences: change.

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College junior reflects on what she’s learned after recovering from an eating disorder brought on by the dangerous standards of the ballet world.

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For Black athletes, the spirit of unity the Games were founded on has never really existed.

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Commercialized self-care practices have brought greater awareness to mental health but can they also be a scapegoat for not doing the hard work necessary for our wellbeing?

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Podcaster and creative activist Dom Roberts on how learning to choose joy has changed her outlook in tough moments.

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Our team on the summer moments that bring us the most joy each year.

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In place of the flashier life events that happiness is often tied to, joy stems from the small wins, the brief moments, and the minor details.

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The fashion blogger and founder on the mission behind Babe Body, her inclusive workout series, and how she’s developed a healthier relationship to exercise.

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In July, we’ll be sharing stories exploring the feeling of joy and tips on how to cultivate it.

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A student from New Zealand reflects on coming to terms with her bisexual identity in college.

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How embracing the nuances of identity can foster a stronger sense of self.

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Taking the time for intentional reflection on how you’re feeling or behaving can have a huge impact on your overall well-being.

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Madhappy team member Stephanie White on the importance of setting her own boundaries after years of putting other people first.

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Because learning to love and accept yourself, flaws and all, is key to living a full life.

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Clide, a singer/songwriter from Berlin, is exploring six of his different emotional states on a new EP called “feelings.”

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To counteract the industry’s exploitative practices, one company is putting the power in the hands of a diverse group of models by allowing them to vet the brands they work with and ensure fair pay.

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Madhappy team member Sam Culp opens up about how growing up queer in rural Ohio and enmeshed in the Baptist Church shaped the way he self-identified throughout his adolescence.

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The books our team turns to when we’re looking for motivation and guidance.

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Although many LGBTQ+ individuals struggle with mental illness each year, accessible and culturally affirming care is still lacking.

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In June, we’ll be sharing stories, interviews, and strategies geared toward fostering a better sense of self.

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A roundup of what we launched, dropped, and hosted this year for Mental Health Awareness month.

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How a case of body dysmorphia after surgery led podcaster Weslie Christensen to reflect on and prioritize her mental health.

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The founder and CEO of Project Healthy Minds on the importance of utilizing technology and pop culture to tackle the mental health crisis.

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Tips from a psychotherapist on navigating uncomfortable and unwanted thought patterns.

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How diving headfirst and unknowingly into the creative world led Jess Girillo to take their mental health more seriously.

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As we continue to open up the conversation surrounding mental health more and more, we learn the power our words hold. Here are some tips on how to speak about mental health with a friend.

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College sophomore and student-athlete reflects on moments spent in her vacation cabin in Idaho, the lessons she has learned there, and how they shaped who she is today.

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Mason Spector, co-founder of Madhappy, shares his mental health story and what he has learned along the way.

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We spoke with the founder of The Alliance, a nonprofit organization specializing in eating disorders, about her personal experience with an eating disorder and more about her organization.

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Check out the recording of Madhappy’s “A Conversation on Mental Health” panel and some highlights from the discussion.

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After a life-threatening health scare, TLO team member Hallie Sheinbaum came to realize how important prioritizing her physical and mental health are.

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Check out the details for Madhappy’s “A Conversation on Mental Health” panel, and meet the panelists.

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Introducing The Madhappy Journal, its purpose, and what's inside.

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In May, we will be sharing stories, interviews, and strategies that explore mental health from many different perspectives.

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Welcome to The Madhappy Field Guide. Your introduction to getting outside, mindfully.

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Here are 10 journal prompts to help you gain a better understanding of yourself.

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See what Alyssa Petersel, therapist and founder of the therapy matching service MyWellbeing, had to say during her takeover of The Local Optimist Hotline.

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A college junior shares her experience so far while studying abroad in Florence, Italy during a pandemic.

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The author of “Forest Bathing” shares why we should all be spending more time among the trees.

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For her latest Inner Piece interview, Sadie Newman connects with LA native Callie Stark about how exploring and traveling impact her life.

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This month’s movie is "Free Solo." Watch it on your own and then join our staff and community for a discussion.

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We spoke with the founder and CEO of the therapy matching service MyWellbeing before her takeover of The Local Optimist Hotline on April 14.

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These are some of the TLO team's picks for favorite travel destinations to go back to or visit for the first time.

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In April, we will be sharing stories, interviews, and strategies geared towards helping you explore all areas of your life.

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To celebrate Madhappy for the Los Angeles Dodgers, we asked some of the team’s most passionate fans to share their memories and messages.

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The key to being more productive is not about how many things you can juggle at once.

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See what The Big Quiet founder had to say during his takeover of The Local Optimist Hotline.

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A college senior recalls her steep learning curve adjusting to remote classes and shares her tips for success.

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To celebrate its partnership with the NBA champions, Madhappy designed a one-of-a-kind replica of the Lakers’ title ring.

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The founder and CEO of Girls Night In and Whiled is helping people slow down and reclaim their downtime.

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Our monthly series features answers to frequently asked questions from our mental health Hotline so that others can benefit.

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We spoke with the meditation leader before his takeover of The Local Optimist Hotline on March 24.

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Sleep expert and MyWellbeing psychotherapist Ric Mathews breaks down the science of sleep.

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For her latest Inner Piece interview, Sadie Newman connects with the fashion and beauty photographer about focus in her work and personal life.

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For all the great things that technology and devices do, they can also be a great source of distraction. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

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This month’s movie is Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry. Watch it on your own and then join our staff and community for a discussion.

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The pressure to pick a major led one student to a major change, which resulted in an unconventional solution.

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After starting ceramics as a lark, the founder of Object-Matter found that working with clay helps her focus evolve.

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These are the tracks the TLO team turns to when they want to block out distractions.

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In March, we’ll be sharing stories, interviews, and strategies geared toward helping you block out distractions and concentrate on the task at hand.

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The rapper and producer has learned to be more accepting of himself, and now he’s making the best music of his life.

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Urban Beats is an organization that uses music and other forms of creative expression to destigmatize conversations around mental health.

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Professor and MyWellbeing flow coach Dr. Julia Colangelo shares five tips to help you get into a flow state.

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Get an inside look at how the Madhappy creative team developed the unique pieces.

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As part of the first Black TikTok creator house, Thiru is bringing joy through her comedy and empowering future generations.

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When you experience creative blocks, these tips can help you get through, over, and around them.

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Spaces that prioritize the welfare of Black women are rare. Aren Barnes found one at Spelman.

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The podcast host and visual artist talks about how her mental health impacts her creative work.

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This month’s movie is Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Watch it on your own and then join our staff and community for a discussion.

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Learning to be present through the highs and lows helps Darcas get to a better place.

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Photographer Atiba Jefferson has shot the world’s top skateboarders, basketball players, and musicians with a unique eye and vision.

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Books, TV shows, and movies that get The Local Optimist team feeling creative.

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Being creative opens up your mind to more possibilities and more ways to express yourself.

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Despite not getting serious about real estate until her late 30s, Jade Mills has more than $6 billion in sales.

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Free-climbing El Capitan and summiting Mt. Everest are great ways to cultivate patience and calm.

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Matt Walczak, a MyWellbeing Integrative Hypnotherapist, shares three tips to help you form habits that actually stick.

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After studying in Japan, Matt Puntigam of Dandy Farmer brought his own interpretation of the ancient art of bonsai to New York City.

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World-renowned Buddhist scholar Robert Thurman shares his insights on the practice of patience.

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4 tips from a licensed therapist that can help you cultivate greater patience with those closest to you.

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This month, we asked the question and wanted to share your answers about how you practice patience.

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For her latest Inner Piece story, Sadie Newman connects with actor Branden Cook about trusting the process.

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Our first movie is Pixar’s Soul. Watch it on your own and then join Local Optimist staff and others for a discussion.

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How patience helped one student navigate a long and winding path to the college of her dreams.

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Learn helpful strategies to help you make the most of the time you have so you can achieve your goals.

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January can be a month full of resolutions. The more patient we can be, the more likely we are to achieve those goals.

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The family that kids are raised in can have an enormous influence, both good and bad, on the types of adults they grow into.

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Disagreements with family members during the holidays can cause a lot of stress. These 5 strategies can help.

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A good book can help you develop greater empathy, find solace, and validate personal experiences.

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Our monthly series answers frequently asked questions from our mental health Hotline so that everyone can benefit.

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Reconciling a privileged upbringing with his race helped shape the writer’s worldview.

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After years of struggling to figure out where she fit in, McCann now approaches her career and mental health from a more positive place.

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How one person learned to cope with her father’s suicide by learning to accept the value of acceptance.

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Try these 5 tips to help keep the “winter blues” at bay

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While it means different things to different people, the concept of family plays a constant role in our lives.

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Using skateboarding, surfing, and snowboarding, Stoked is a mentoring organization that builds bridges with boardsports.

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These 4 strategies can help you cultivate a positive response, even in challenging situations.

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Learn about the connection between cooking and mental health. Plus, discover how to make green shakshuka.

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A community fridge in New York's Greenpoint shows the power of neighbors stepping up to help each other.

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Our monthly series answers frequently asked questions from our mental health Hotline so that everyone can benefit.

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For the renowned former Top Chef contestant, the ripple effects of sobriety stretched inside and outside the kitchen.

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Feeling gratitude isn’t always easy, but these three mindfulness practices can help.

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This month’s theme at The Local Optimist is Gratitude. So get to know what it means, how it’s good for us, and how you can practice it, even now.

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How a mixed Israeli and Palestinian basketball team is changing the world one person at a time.

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Our fifth installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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Understanding mental health comes through research and how research can lead to mental wellness. Which is exactly why we’re partnering with our friends at AIM Youth Mental Health to help fund urgently needed mental health research. 

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We created this series to answer our most asked Hotline questions for our entire community. To see that other people are going through some of the same challenges you are, and to get real answers from a real person.

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Our fourth installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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NFL legend Marshawn Lynch sat down with psychologist Dr. Michael Gervais as part of the Madhappy® / UNINTERRUPTED® “More Than My Feelings” campaign to celebrate World Mental Health Day.

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We teamed up with the meditation and mindfulness app Headspace to guide you through the most popular mediation techniques. The only part that really matters is, which one works best for you?

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The Local Optimist Hotline is back and here to stay! Text “Hotline” to 310.299.9414 to tell us whatever’s on your mind. We can’t wait to talk to you!

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What's the difference between stress and anxiety? How about feeling anxious vs having an anxiety disorder? We're breaking down the basics to help us understand anxiety, so we can then tackle coping with it.

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Part 2 of our Anxiety Booklet covers four different research-backed coping strategies for helping alleviate our anxiety.

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Suicide is not your only option. There are always more ways to get help, take away the pain, and feel better - even when you can’t see them right now.

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At Madhappy, we like to call Anxiety the result of resisting our feelings... The more we learn about ourselves, and what type of anxiety we struggle with, the better we can be at both identifying it and overcoming it. 

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Our fourth installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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Our third installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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While play seems like the antithesis of work, fostering a sense of playfulness and bringing that to our work can be extremely helpful.

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Our second installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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There is no one-size-fits-all formula for play; it is highly individualized depending on what brings the most joy and happiness to one’s life.

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One son's story of learning about his father's personality, beyond his PTSD, through the legacy he left behind and the stories of people he touched along the way.

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Our first installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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Play can take us back to our childhood days: running around in your backyard with the neighborhood kids or playing pretend with Polly Pockets. But, what is it now?

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We can still find small and beautiful moments of stillness despite the chaos. We can pick up our puzzles and our paints and find what gives our inner child light.

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Play can look, feel, and manifest itself to different people in a myriad of ways, but it always follows one common theme: enjoyment for the sake of enjoyment.

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What must primarily be acknowledged is that sometimes we don’t understand. Every individual has a unique experience with mental health that manifests in several different ways.

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While expressing our feelings and emotions is important, making others feel seen, heard, and understood is the ultimate goal when talking about mental health.

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It can be difficult to express how depression or anxiety feels. It can be even more difficult to share those feelings with someone else.

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The dissonance between how we present ourselves on social media and how we really are can be quite damaging to mental health. How can we restore a healthier relationship with our online selves?

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Part 1 of our Communication Toolkit! The more we talk, the more we know. The more we know, the more we grow. The more we grow, the better we feel.

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This July, we are turning our attention to talking, listening, and understanding- the patchwork mosaic of good communication.

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"The first step towards resolving that uncomfortable feeling of cognitive dissonance. Who was I beyond addiction?"

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Jacob is 24 years old from New York City, NY.

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Sara is 25 years old from San Diego, CA.

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Corey is 25 years old from Los Angeles, CA.

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Just know that if you are angry right now, we are too.

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We’re celebrating what it feels like to be true to yourself and exploring the relationship between truth, acceptance, and pride. Through each conversation, we hope to take another step toward a more open and optimistic world.

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Startled. Amazed. Excited. Awe. Eager. Energetic.

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Avoidance. Revulsion. Judgemental. Hesitant. Disapproval

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Where Fear gets complicated, is when we start to anticipate threats or have thoughts about potential dangers. 

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If Happiness is something that we are always chasing, Sadness must be something that we always want to avoid, right? Not quite.

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Happiness can look 100 different ways to 100 different people, and that is part of what makes it so special. 

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Aaron, a homeless outreach worker, shares his perspective of being an essential worker during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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May is our favorite month - Mental Health Awareness Month! For 2020, our theme is 'How Are You Feeling?'. Get a glimpse into this jam packed month with Mason & Meadow.

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When you surrender into your reality, you accept that this is, put simply, what it is. And when you recognize that this is what it is, you can work towards making that reality a stronger, better, more positive experience. 

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"How can it be problematic to just like yourself right now while you're in the process of healing? It's not a binary decision: acceptance or healing."

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I really pinpoint the precise moment in which I outwardly decided to accept others’ portrayal of what my life was supposed to be, but I do know that it happened.

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Acceptance is a theme that is more pertinent now more than ever. Whether it's accepting where you are, the state of the world, or yourself - there is a lot of lessons wrapped up in Acceptance.

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You can take the self work even further by adding more mindfulness and awareness in, rather than attempting to push your thoughts out.

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As another week in social isolation comes around, Meadow notices that my inner roommate is quite chatty.

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Elizabeth Segran, author of The Rocket Years: How Your Twenties Launch The Rest of Your Life, helping us navigate this new reality.

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Sometimes, waking up and choosing to have a good day feels impossible. But, we have more control over how our days go than we like to believe.

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With World Happiness Day coming up this month, we chose to dedicate the entire theme of the month to just that: Happiness. The seemingly never fully attainable concept we all strive for.

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"What was wrong is that we are conditioned to believe that 'more' is always 'better.'” A story on burn out by therapist and friend of the blog, Alyssa Petersel.

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Meadow & Mason here to introduce February's theme: LOVE. Each month of 2020 we'll be announcing our word of the month that will be the central theme for our digital content and monthly events!

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“When I first started therapy, boundaries are not what I went in for, but they are what I came away with."

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Stress is one of those fun Darwinisms that I really would rather do without.

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The “elevator pitch” version of my life includes a family that has coped with bipolar disorder, addiction, suicide, cancer, homelessness, and that’s just to name a few.

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“When I first started therapy, boundaries are not what I went in for, but they are what I came away with."

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What does it mean to express gratitude? What if we thanked the little things each day? How would this improve our lives?

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I know we always ask each other and ourselves if we’re happy, truly happy, but what does happiness really look like? Editorial piece written by Madhappy Co-Founder, Mason Spector.

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