Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

My Breakdown Was like My Brain Telling Me 'It's Time to Talk' MindJournal's Ollie Aplin Tells ABI JACKSON How Learning to Write Down His Thoughts Helped Change His Life

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

My Breakdown Was like My Brain Telling Me 'It's Time to Talk' MindJournal's Ollie Aplin Tells ABI JACKSON How Learning to Write Down His Thoughts Helped Change His Life

Article excerpt

Byline: ABI JACKSON

OLLIE Aplin admits writing a journal felt strange at first - "I didn't know what I was supposed to write" - and it took a while to get into the habit. But he persevered, and doing so proved a "gamechanger" for his own mental health and wellbeing, helping him manage post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and panic attacks.

"Put simply, journaling gave me the space to learn how to talk about how I felt," says Ollie, 31. "And that's changed my life in so many ways, from my relationships, to how I deal with life in general. And how to cope with living with anxiety, PTSD and stress."

He's just released This Book Will Make You Stronger (PS9.99), the second in his MindJournal 'movement', to help others embark on their own journaling journeys towards healthier minds.

The original MindJournal - basically, journals designed specifically to appeal to men, with questions and tasks, alongside space to write, to help guide people through the process - was launched through a Kickstarter campaign early last year.

Within just 72 hours, Ollie had reached his target and was able to make his vision a reality. Now, This Book Will Make You Stronger takes it a step further, providing not just a safe space for getting your thoughts down on the page, but the tools to help identify triggers and develop ways of managing them, featuring 30 writing exercises and three core stages - Warm Up, Hurdles, and Strength (Ollie describes it as a "workout for the mind").

We're getting better at talking about mental health, which is encouraging as one in four people in the UK experience some sort of mental health issue each year. But while women are more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety and depression, men are affected, too, though they're often less likely to talk about it. This can have devastating consequences: suicide remains the single biggest killer of men aged under 50, and according to the Men's Health Forum, 76% of UK suicides are by men.

Ollie had a mental breakdown in his early-20s, two years after losing his mother, who had bipolar disorder, to suicide when he was 19. "My mum was an immensely private and paranoid person from her bipolar. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.