24/7 Hotlines: Call or text 988 or text 741741

My Self Care Checklist!

A couple of weeks ago, I became inspired to create a self care checklist after seeing other people’s on social media. Some things on my list were easier to think than others; I hadn’t really thought about some of these as self care activities before. Anyway, this is what I came up with!

  • Writing
  • Watching YouTube videos
  • Listening to my favorite songs
  • Boxing
  • Eating my comfort snacks
  • Sitting in silence
  • Hanging out with my cat
  • Brushing my teeth

Be on the lookout in the coming weeks for some Reels where I plan go a little more in depth on each activity!

What are some things you would put on your self care checklist?

-T

Quinn at Band Together!

A few weeks ago, our Peer Support Specialist, Quinn, tabled at Band Together, a Young Adult Mental Health Awareness Fair.

At the fair, they got to meet many awesome teens and young adults in Connecticut, and watched musical performances from Diggity and Blonde Otter!

Unstoppable

After nearly a year of inactivity, I recently released my 10th song “Unstoppable”!

As you may have seen from my other songs I’ve shared in Creative Expressions, the majority of my songs have a theme of sadness, regret, etc. However, I chose to release “Unstoppable” next not only to have a change in theme, but as also a sort of celebration for hitting this personal music release milestone.

“Unstoppable” is a song showcasing a growth in self confidence within myself. It did take about a year or so to write it, though. In the beginning, I used pockets of feeling content to write this song. Eventually, I had an easier time writing as I had more moments of feeling content and even self accomplishment in my life. And rereading the lyrics during the writing process helped too.

I also chose to perform this track with a more laid back flow, which for me helps deliver the message of having more self esteem, less worries, etc.

Finally, this is my first song with a new recording studio, The Recording Parlor in Windsor, CT. Since moving last year, it was just more convenient to find things that were closer to me, a recording studio being one of them. I look forward to continuing my music journey as I keep writing and recording!

National Hobby Month

January is National Hobby Month! While we engage in our hobbies all year long, I think it’s fitting that the year begins with us taking note of what we enjoy doing. Plus, we can think about whether there are some activities we want to continue doing or stop, and any new activities we might want to pick up.


Some of my hobbies include making music, writing stories, and creating YouTube videos. Check out my music here, and my YouTube channel here!

Let me know in the comments what some of your hobbies are! – T

Reels: Advice & Music (2)

This week’s Reels are both from Therell’s interview with Paige Reynolds and Joshua Perez from Child First Greater Bridgeport! In the first Reel, they talk about music, with a mention of popular TV show Impractical Jokers. In the second Reel, Paige, Josh, and Therell give advice & share some wisdom.

John Mayer on Impractical Jokers

After Paige shares that John Mayer is one of her favorite music artists, Therell asks her if she has seen his episode on Impractical Jokers.


Mental Health Advice

During the end of their discussion, Paige, Josh, and Therell talk about how having a safe and healthy mind can help you have a safe and healthy body.


Thanks for tuning in! Check out last week’s Reels here, and Therell’s interview with Paige and Josh here!

Thrilla T – Sabotage

Hi everyone! I’ve recently released 2 new songs: The Nerve and Wrong Game! The “album” that these 2 songs are in is called Sabotage.

For anyone who’s listened to some of my previous songs, you’ll know that I often talk about my feelings of loneliness and social loss. These two songs lean more on the social loss side.

I feel that I’ve made so many social mistakes throughout my life, so any time I think back to fizzled out friendships, I am filled with regret.

Please consider listening to these two songs, as I think they do an okay job of laying everything out. If you are also someone who feels they’ve made some mistakes in their social life, I hope my music can help you know that you are not alone.

If you would like to check out art from other people on our website, visit our Creative Expressions page here!

My New Song

As some of you may know, I make music. I recently released a new song titled Watch Your Back. You can check it out below.

This is my 7th song that I have done and I have many more to come in the future!

For this song, I had written part of the second verse first and it was originally going to be the first verse. However, as I continued writing, I felt the original first verse would work better as a the second verse. Then, I came up with the first verse, and lastly, the chorus.

The main message behind this song is to, well, watch your back for those who may be plotting against you. I have a YouTube channel for my music where I will also be making videos breaking the down the lyrics of each of my songs. You can visit that channel here and be on the lookout for those videos soon!

If you would like to check out other people’s art, visit our Creative Expressions page here!

– Therell

Alone

Social Media Assistant, Therell, shares his song, “Alone”, which is about how he feels alone in the world.

Mainstream Sellout

** trigger warning: suicidal ideation

** explicit language

So for those of you that don’t know, Machine Gun Kelly is one of my favorite artists. I wrote a post a little while back about Machine Gun Kelly songs that helped me through one of the worst depressions of my life. I think one of my favorite things about his music is how unfiltered it is. He talks so openly about his struggles with his mental health and addiction so unapologetically. I love how he is just unapologetically himself.

On March 25th, Machine Gun Kelly dropped his new album Mainstream Sellout and of course, I listened to the album the first chance I got that day. To say I was excited was an understatement. As I listened to the album, I was once again just in awe at how open and unfiltered the lyrics were. There were so many lines that I just immediately connected with.

He has a lot of haters, but I really just think it’s because they don’t understand him. But, people who sit on the internet and make fun of people they don’t even know just have no life anyways. Like calling him a poser just because he originally started in rap and talking about his style or claiming he’s a poser. And like people wonder why he is depressed and anxious…people are constantly coming at him with the most ridiculous shit.

I think the most ridiculous insult I’ve heard is that he is stealing Blink-182’s sound, even though Travis Barker, A LITERAL BAND MEMBER OF BLINK-182, has been involved with producing MGK’s two most recent albums. In fact, Travis Barker was literally the drummer on both albums.

ANYHOO, below are some of my favorite songs from the album along with some of my favorite lines.

born with horns

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

Yeah, part one: why is it so hard to live?
Part two: I shouldn’t have done what I did
Part three: everyone’s left me alone
Part four: I don’t want to live anymore
Yeah, I’d rather be a freak than somebody’s puppet
Release your leash, I don’t belong in the circus
They cut each my wings soon as my name was in cursive
Now I’m six feet deep, I guess my life wasn’t perfect

god save me

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

Last month, took a gun in the room alone
Last month, almost blew my head off
She screamеd and I never put down the phonе
I gotta be somewhere, please hang up

Now, smile for the camera
Breakups are entertaining
My mental imbalance
Mixed with the drugs create me

Do it again, do it again and die
I’m a lost boy, I’m a lost boy
She’s a goth girl, she’s a pop girl
I know a one way, I know a one way
To a lost world, to a lost world

5150

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

[Verse 1]
Bruises don’t heal overnight
I’m a few sips from pulling the trigger
Self-abusive, on the borderline
If having you’ll be my grave digger

[Pre-Chorus]
Leave, leave, leave me now
Please, please, save yourself
Leave, leave, leave me now
Before I hurt someone else

[Chorus]
You’re crazy (5150)
I won’t go (5150)
You make me (5150)
I’m damaged (Please don’t fix me)

papercuts – album edit

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

Everybody’s so nice lately (Everybody’s not nice)
Polarized feelings, I don’t wear them on my face lately (I don’t wear them on my face)
Internalized evеrything the headlines say latеly (Everything they say)
Demonized just because I was an angel face baby (Baby)

I spend a lot of nights thinking
I might go to sleep and never wake up
I spend a lot of money on these therapy sessions
Even though I’m not showing up
I spend a lot of time healing my mind and my heart
But I still put these drugs in my gut

ay! (feat. Lil Wayne)

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

Only playlists I like are the sad onеs
Yeah, I let the mеdicine in, I know it don’t help in the end
But I got depression again
I had a meeting at 7, I skipped it and slept in and woke up at 7 PM

die in california (feat. Gunna, Young Thug & Landon Barker)

Lyrics That I Connected With:

Killed the me I used to be
I might die in California
In my mind, I had a dream
Saw a demon on my shoulder
Yeah, I know, I should probably let it go (Let it go)
Yeah, I know, I might die in California, die in California, mmm

Ayy, someone cut the lights off please
I’ve been kinda sad lately
I know that I’m good for you (Yeah)
But you kinda bad, baby (Mm)
We’re just doin’ love chants, brewin’ up the potion
I had a premonition I was overdosin’ (So)
Someone cut the lights off please
I don’t want you to look at me
I paint my nails black
If I ever look happy then it’s an act
Every day is an anxiety attack
I wish I could take it back
To when I was drinkin’ water out the tap
With the Cleveland logo printed on my hat
Tell me, was it my fear of bein’ complacent
That ended up leavin’ me so jaded?
I’m miserable even though I made it

twin flame

Lyrics That I Connected With:

And tonight the moon is full, so take me anywhere outside
I cannot kiss you yet, you’re magic, so I’ll just stare at you instead
I get insecure and panic ’cause I know you’re too pure for this

[Chorus: Machine Gun Kelly]
You’re too good for me, I’m too bad to keep
I’m too sad, lonely
I want you only

Takeaways

  1. Based on the lyrics I chose, it’s probably obvious that I have struggled with depression. I think he does a really good job of describing what it’s really like.
  2. Even though I didn’t put every song on the album in this post, I want to make it clear I love them all. I just tried to showcase the ones I felt showcased how I feel about my mental health.
  3. I think anyone who has struggled with their mental health will be able to relate to most of these songs. I know I was really able to relate to a lot of the lyrics.
  4. This album is great.
  5. Yes, I am an angsty, depressed, and anxious 25 year old. Thanks for noticing.

Things That Uplift Me When I’m Feeling Down

Monster

Social Media Assistant Therell shares his song “Monster” which is about how he feels like a complete and utter monster.

Music Therapy

Music has been something I have always used as a way to cope when I’m struggling. There’s just something about music that helps me release the weight on my shoulders. Listening to music is great, but being able to play an instrument and sing is another level. It’s something that I have been doing since I was in middle school and while there are times I don’t do it for months are years, I can always sit down at the piano or pick up my guitar and play like no time has passed.

Last night, I put my puppy into the crate for a nap and I sat down and played my guitar and sang some of my favorite songs. I’ve been really struggling with adjusting to having a young puppy and I knew playing would probably help relive some of the stress. My grandfather taught me how to play guitar when I was younger and he even gave me one of his guitars when I was in middle school. He is a big reason why I feel so connected to music, so naturally, whenever I play, I send him some videos.

me with my grandfather’s guitar he gave me

I used to be really conscious of hearing myself sing in recordings. My grandfather always recorded me singing and playing, but it always made me cringe. Videos of me just playing guitar or piano I loved, but I couldn’t stand to listen to my voice. Now at 24 years old, I am somehow now at a point where I have more confidence in myself and I’m comfortable sharing my voice with the world.

I recorded myself last night singing “Wide Open Spaces” by The Chicks because it’s a song that my mom always listened to while I was growing up and it was also a song that always had a lot of meaning to me. The lyrics have always spoken to me, but they speak to me more now that I’m older. I decided to post that video to share with everyone who seems to love to hear me play, but it was also something I did for myself. You can watch my video below:

@ohbabyitskailey picked up the guitar for the first time in months, a bit rusty #guitar #thechicks #wideopenspaces #singing #music #countrycovers #fyp ♬ original sound – Kailey

I am lucky to have playing music to help me cope. How does music help you cope?

Twenty One Pilots Lyrics That Just Speak To My Soul

When I was in college, I got really into Twenty One Pilots. One of my friends was really into them and that was what initially caused me to explore their music. The first two years of college was a bit of a rough go for me and I went through a lot. I was really struggling with anxiety and depression. I was coping by smoking, drinking, and many other bad decisions. I was doing anything just to feel numb.

One thing that really helped me was music. Music and lyrics both really helped me in so many ways. I would listen to some lyrics and just be like YES, SOMEBODY ELSE GETS IT. I was a commuter all through college so I would blast my music on my 40 minute commute and just scream sing my heart out. The music made me feel seen and honestly it made me feel alive. It made feeling my heavy emotions bearable because the lyrics reminded me that I was not alone in my feelings.

Twenty One Pilots songs were heavy on my rotation throughout those years. Somehow I had completely forgotten all about my love for those songs until yesterday. Yesterday I suddenly remembered their album Vessel existed. It has been on repeat in the car and during my work day ever since. I still know all of the words and you bet your ass I am still scream singing them almost 6 years later. Below are some of the lyrics that really spoke to me when I was really, really struggling.

Goner – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

I’m a goner, somebody catch my breath

I’m a goner, somebody catch my breath

I wanna be known by you

I wanna be known by you

[Chorus]

Though I’m weak and beaten down

I’ll slip away into the sound

The ghost of you is close to me

I’m inside out, you’re underneath

Heavydirtysoul – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

[Verse 1]

There’s an infestation in my mind’s imagination

I hope that they choke on smoke

‘Cause I’m smokin’ them out the basement

This is not rap, this is not hip-hop

Just another attempt to make the voices stop

Rappin’ to prove nothin’, just writin’ to say somethin’

‘Cause I wasn’t the only one who wasn’t rushin’ to sayin’ nothin’

This doesn’t mean I lost my dream

It’s just right now I got a really crazy mind to clean

[Pre-Chorus]

Gangsters don’t cry, therefore, therefore I’m

Mr. Misty-eyed, therefore I’m (I’m)

[Chorus]

Can you save, can you save my

Can you save my heavydirtysoul?

Can you save, can you save my

Can you save my heavydirtysoul?

For me, for me

Migraine – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

My mind ship-wrecked, this is the only land my mind could find

I did not know it was such a violent island

Full of tidal waves, suicidal crazed lions

They’re trying to eat me, blood running down their chin

And I know that I can fight, or I can let the lion win

I begin to assemble what weapons I can find

‘Cause sometimes to stay alive, you gotta kill your mind

[Chorus]

Am I the only one I know

Waging my wars behind my face and above my throat?

Shadows will scream that I’m alone

But I know, we’ve made it this far… kid

Car Radio – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With

Sometimes quiet is violent

I find it hard to hide it

My pride is no longer inside

It’s on my sleeve

My skin will scream

Reminding me of

Who I killed inside my dream

I hate this car that I’m driving

There’s no hiding for me

I’m forced to deal with what I feel

There is no distraction to mask what is real

I could pull the steering wheel

[Chorus]

I have these thoughts

So often I ought

To replace that slot

With what I once bought

‘Cause somebody stole

My car radio

And now I just sit in silence

The Run And Go – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With

[Chorus]

Don’t wanna call you in the nighttime

Don’t wanna give you all my pieces

Don’t wanna give you all my trouble

Don’t wanna give you all my demons

You’ll have to watch me struggle

From several rooms away

But tonight, I’ll need you to stay

Truce – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With:

[Verse 1]

Now the night is coming to an end, ooh

The sun will rise and we will try again, ooh

[Chorus]

Stay alive, stay alive for me

You will die, but now your life is free

Take pride in what is sure to die

[Verse 2]

I will fear the night again, ooh

I hope I’m not my only friend, ooh

[Chorus]

Stay alive, stay alive for me

You will die, but now your life is free

Take pride in what is sure to die

Friend, Please – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With

Living like a ghost, you walk by everyone you know

You say that you’re fine, but you have lost your sway and glow

So I stopped by to let you know

[Chorus]

Friend, please remove your hands

From over your eyes for me

I know you want to leave

But friend, please don’t take your life away from me

Oh Ms Believer – Twenty One Pilots

Some Lyrics That I Connected With

Oh, Ms. Believer, my pretty sleeper

Your twisted mind is like snow on the road

Your shaking shoulders prove that it’s colder

Inside your head than the winter of dead

I will tell you I love you

But the muffs on your ears will cater your fears

My nose and feet are running as we start

To travel through snow, together, we go

Together, we go

Interview With Music Artist Felly

How Music Has Helped Me In My Recovery

Post written by Kailey MarcAurele

Music has healing power. It has the ability to take people out of themselves for a few hours.

Elton John

Music has always been a huge part of my life. From listening to music, to playing instruments, music has always been there for me.

I am the kind of person who ALWAYS has headphones on me. When I was in school, there were times when having music playing throughout the day was the only way I made it through the day. It’s crazy how music can make you feel so many things.

Music can make you feel happy, but it can also make you feel sad. Music can bring people together. Lyrics can literally validate your feelings.

There are so many songs where I listen to the lyrics and I’m just like holy shit, that is me, that is my life. The music these artists create come from their own struggles and music is a way for them to express themselves.

You don’t have to create music to feel the effects. Scream singing these songs can be cathartic. Listening to them can also put you at ease, even if they’re not the most uplifting songs because they make you feel understood. And because not everything is about being emo, some of these songs can make you happy and make you want to dance!

Music can be extremely beneficial for your mental health. Music can:

  • Elevate your mood and motivation
  • Reduce stress
  • Improve focus
  • Help you relax
  • Reduce anxiety and depression
  • Boost confidence

Additionally, music can be a good way to express negative emotions in a healthy way. Music is an incredible vehicle to help us process negative emotion. Listening to “angry” music can be therapeutic when we’re dealing with stress and anger.

There have been so many times where I’ve been angry or upset and I’ve went and listened to “angry” music and it’s actually made me feel better. And when I say angry music, I do in fact mean the kind where they’re screaming. While some people might not find the screaming music comforting at all, I find comfort in it.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been pissed off and I’ve just gotten in my car, put on something like Sticks & Bricks by A Day To Remember and just drove to blow off steam. Being alone in my car driving with my music has always been my happy place. What’s better than being in complete control and away from everyone? Maybe that’s just the introvert in me.

A couple of months ago, I was in a very, very deep depression. Like I was in a very dark place, barely functioning, not really taking care of myself at all. I was pretty much sitting on the couch staring at the wall all day too depressed to move or do anything.

You know how I was coping then? MUSIC! I had my Machine Gun Kelly playlist on repeat because I was just being super emo. If you’ve ever listened to MGK, you’ll know what I mean. Even though the music was super depressing, it was still helpful because I was really able to connect with it and feel a little less alone.

While listening to music has been super beneficial for me, playing instruments has also been such a huge coping skill for me. I have been playing piano and the guitar since probably middle school and more recently, I’ve learned to play the ukulele (really hoping to learn to play the banjo next).

Whenever I was dealing with really intense emotions, playing piano was always my go-to. I remember my dad once telling someone that he always knew when I had a tough day because I would immediately go to the piano and start playing, sometimes for hours.

There’s just something so calming about playing the piano to me. The fact that I am able to make beautiful sounding music with my hands is really just so amazing to me. Like it really never fails to amaze me. And it’s just so incredible because my fingers always just seem to know where to go, it’s like I’m one with the piano when I’m playing. There’s seriously no better feeling than my fingers gliding across the keys creating beautiful music.

@turningpointct.org

Music really helps me ease my anxiety. It’s a nice escape from reality for me. How does music help you? ##mentalhealth ##music ##anxiety ##peersupport

♬ original sound – turningpointct

While I do love the piano, playing guitar and singing is another way I like to decompress. Guitar doesn’t come as natural to me as the piano does, but it was something I’ve always been into because my grandfather used to play guitar in a band. He taught me to play when I was just a kid.

I think singing is really beneficial for me because it’s a way for me to physically release emotions. While playing the instruments also does that, it’s just an added thing because the words are coming from my own body. Even if my singing isn’t that great, the feeling of singing is intense and cathartic. Honestly, sometimes I’m like close to tears when I sing because I feel the emotions that strongly. PS, crying isn’t a bad thing, it’s a healthy way to release those negative emotions you try so desperately to keep in.

@turningpointct.org

music has the ability to change my entire mood. what does music do for you? ##copingskills ##music ##mentalhealth ##mentalhealthmatters ##fypシ

♬ original sound – turningpointct

Music is really quite an amazing thing and it has been there for me through the ups and downs that is life.

How has music helped you?

Young Adult Connection Group, Guildford, CT

NAMI Young Adult Connection Community is proud to start up another location in Guilford, Connecticut!

We will be meeting from 6:30-8pm at the 510 Village Walk Plaza on the first and third Tuesday of every month (bi-weekly).

This NAMI group is facilitated by young people for young people ages 18-29 and it’s FREE!

Some activities we do at these groups include, but are not limited to, music, art, games, talking, meditation…and so much more!

Snacks will be provided.
If you have any questions, please contact Val @ (860) 266-0366.

unnamed-copy

"This is who I am!"

Is coming out as transgender (maybe bisexual or pan-sexual) in the LGBT community, coming out at all? Or is it just an affirmation of the trust that one has for the same community? Or just about a mixture of both?

A hint of reality: I’ve learnt that coming out as transgender to your gay friends can be just as nerve wrecking as coming out as gay to your straight friends.

“We are at a place now where more and more trans people want to come forward and say this is who I am.” Laverne Cox.

“I first had to come out as gay, then I could finally have the courage to say, yes I am really transgender.” Hearing that from a friend is breathtaking and I have had the privilege to to be among friends who are transgender and who have been able to come forward to their friends, families and community and say, “This is who I am.”

In perspective, one still faces an ordeal when coming out in the LGBT community, you never know what to expect, Its a journey of probabilities: acceptance or rejection. I can only imagine the thought process that it requires leading up to that moment when you boldly make that Facebook post or wear your first dress or suit before everyone.

That is inspiring!

The hardest part for me, and I have to admit, is getting use to the new pronouns. Having known a person for a very long time, it does take time before you can fully embrace that person’s new identity. But as I reflect on this, I realize that your friend (whomever he/she is) requires your enduring assurance to affirm their presence for whomever they are.
As humans, one way in which we remember names is by associating a person’s name with certain essence of their personality and as such navigating new identities can be difficult (that’s human) but when you get it right – it builds mutual trust and enduring relationships.

We can always remember that “Its the same person, but different pronouns.”

Taking from fictional Albus Dumbledore but just as real, “It doesn’t matter what someone was born but what they grow to become.”

Growing up, the concept of being transgender was especially foreign to me until I learnt about Laverne Cox, a few years later, that has changed. Today, it is just a part of who I am as my transgender friends – more so my brothers and sisters.

Recently, I came across one of my schoolmates from high school online, who transitioned a few years ago. For a Jamaican, or any nationality for that matter, it is revolutionary!
She is not only out to her family but to the country. She shared her story through her YouTube videos and though now living in New York, she is an active LGBT activist for LGBT youth throughout the country.

I reached out to her just to let her know how I feel about her passion and her response was just as heartwarming. These small moments are inspiring and the unprecedented opportunity to transcend social standards and expectations is incredible.

To see my friends come out on Facebook and luckily, the support that they receive proves so much about the spirit in our community. Sometimes there are hundreds of hugs and kisses just waiting to embrace you for simply saying the words:

“This is who I am!”

Bullies

Have you ever been bullied? I have. Many times over my 23 years of life; and the bullying still continues to this very day. I am being bullied by a guy that lives in my home. I live in a group home so I technically cannot avoid this person, but I can try to get away from him by going to the school I attend and using the library as a sanctuary for when I need to escape from this person during the day when the school and the library is open. But on weekends I cannot just simply avoid him, so I just tend to stay in my room pretty much all the time because he upsets me all the time. I even cried this morning, the morning of August 12, 2015. It was so bad that I could not attend my vocational program that pays me some money for attending. I have decide that I will attend while he around and that I will not want to be around him any more. So, as I am writing this post, I want to know if any of you have been bullied and how it felt when you have and what you have done to try fix or find a way to change what you did during you week to avoid the bully? Please reply with your answers. It would help me and make me feel better if I knew that there others out there that had the same feelings that I did. Thank you.