Choosing your path…

This article was originally published on LinkedIn on 20 August 2018.

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25 hours in a row…

175 pounds raised…

Would you say that I helped break the stigma? Would you say that things are different now? Would you say that things are changing? Would you actually want things to change?…

The problem with depression (or any mental health concern) is that even success can feel like failure. I would believe I made a difference… some of these comments made me cry…

So candid and so difficult to be so open especially as a man in a professional capacity. You are remarkable and will have helped more people than you know with your authentic honest account of your own experience. Thank you.

I can’t commend you enough for your kindness and support to others.

A courageous and selfless post. Thanks for sharing. I’ll tune in on Twitch and hopefully others will too!

Just had a coffee with Andrew this morning, unaware of all this – to your absolute credit Andrew, sharing experiences and your own story can only go to help others, of whom there are many

I’m so very proud of my great friends Andrew Salkeld who has written a searingly candid, honest and vulnerable piece here in order to try and break the stigma surrounding mental health in the professional space (and out of it).

However; even after seeing reading these comments, even after being asked to talk at various mental health events, even after being asked to co-host a podcast on mental health and gaming, I still feel like I have failed…

This is a problem many of your employees (and sometimes employers) may suffer from. They will work hard, they will spend hours calculating returns, they will spend days preparing presentations, they will spend months creating budgets, they will spend years helping you implement a business plan and grow your company.

They will feel they have achieved nothing.

Why?… because the reward they are seeking is not a promotion…it is not a bonus…it is not a salary increase…it is not a car allowance…the reward often sought by people is acceptance.

This isn’t acceptance in the form of respect or being a peer; this is acceptance for being an individual with opinions and ideas.

This is acceptance of being yourself.

It took me a long time to figure out what life meant to me. After everything that happened to me in 2017, which I talked about in Breaking the Stigma, I struggled to find what meant something to me anymore. My world was shattered. What I realised in that moment, and I stand by this to this day, is…

…be yourself, because nobody else can be.

Simple isn’t it.

We are all unique. We are all individuals. We all have our own likes…our own dislikes. We all have opinions. We are all different. We are not normal…there actually is no normal!

Embrace it!

So what? What do I do now?

My first ask is a simple one…

…say ‘Thank You’ more often…

…it will make so much more of a difference than you know. Also…

…learn about each other, take an interest in each other…

…this will lead to better and more meaningful relationships; both in business and in life!

My second ask isn’t much more complicated if I’m honest.

I am going to continue live streaming on Twitch when I have the spare time to enable me to do so. I am going to continue trying to break the stigma attached to mental health (in the workplace). I’m not doing this for anyone else. I’m doing this because it’s a cause I truly believe in.

You could continue to follow my journey by visiting the website or store. You could continue to follow on Twitch. Come and join the conversation. You could support by donating to Just Giving or simply Texting XMIZ70 to 70070 on your mobile phone.

You could also follow along on FacebookTwitterInstagram and Discord.

You could do any of this…

You could do none of this…

But one thing you must do is…

…be you…

Andrew Salkeld

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