Clarifying business missions

This January I went to Cincinnati for a cluster of three business conferences, and to explore possible expansion of my online network to a satellite city. During the third conference, I got e-mail rejection notices for all the pending grants I had for my business, some of which I had thought were locked up. My friends helped me through it and suggested more networking and work on clarifying business missions. They also suggested I stay in touch for another event the next weekend.

Bridge shot in downtown Cincinnati. Riding across the grate freaked me out some.


Continue reading Clarifying business missions

By Yvonne Smith – Why Mental Illness Labeling is Harmful

Editors note: This is an essay written by Yvette McShan taken with her permission from a Facebook discussion group. For a comprehensive treatment of this topic, along with many personal stories, check out

Labeling is Harmful because It Costs People Rights: Parental rights Right to bear arms Right for employment in certain fields. Social stigma.

Introduce yourself to a prospective mother-in-law with a mental illness label. Tell the police that you are X disease, and you want them to know. It’s dangerous being known as a club members of the DSM.

I do not hide that I am in

Continue reading By Yvonne Smith – Why Mental Illness Labeling is Harmful

Ann Burgess – We all need to contribute to society

It is critical to remind each other and ourselves as often and with as much charitable love as possible of how “whole” health requires being a critical cog/voice/contributer to something greater than ourselves. I have not yet found the basic ways to “realistically” ever be a parent quite yet.

I have not totally given up, it’s not all that matters to me, but I’m getting a little bit old to be a brand new parent. This is in spite of getting younger in so many practical ways as I learn more about how to contribute to society… As tough as

Continue reading Ann Burgess – We all need to contribute to society

24 tips to increase Peer Leadership In Your State

Here are my thoughts on some innovative ways to increase peer leadership in your state. This was a conversation that came from SCOPE, an organization of peer in Missouri. The acronym stands for Support Consumer Operated Program Enhancements, but unfortunately, leadership didn’t do a good job developing joint problem solving capacities of the members and it just turned into a reporting mechanism for the state to monitor the peer programs. They put out a call for ideas and I sent them this and got no response. So this is re-post so that other people may be able to use the

Continue reading 24 tips to increase Peer Leadership In Your State

My Experience of the Three Phases of Internal Stigma Reduction

By Ken Braiterman, Wellness Wordworks Board Chair

I came out to my family and trusted friends right away, when I was diagnosed in 1977, not with people who only knew me a short time, or at work. I didn’t want them to think about my mental health history if I got angry, tired, or frustrated like everybody else.

What I told myself determined what I told other people. That evolved in stages.

I thought in 1977 that I had a chemical imbalance in the brain, a no-fault disease controllable with medication. That was a new idea then. If enough people

Continue reading My Experience of the Three Phases of Internal Stigma Reduction

10 Easy Ways to Reduce Mental Health Care Costs AND Improve Outcomes

Right now many Missouri and Kansas mental health centers repeatedly face huge budget cuts. In fact, this is true nationwide. We simply can’t afford as a society to keep spending as much money on useless mental health care costs. Right now the mental health system faces a choice that is also being faced in the energy, agriculture, freshwater supply, transportation, and education. In all of these areas there are market failures causing a re-allocation of resources away from science-based, effective, low-cost solutions. We are subsidizing unsustainability by pouring money into these systems in directions that make problems worse, not better.

Continue reading 10 Easy Ways to Reduce Mental Health Care Costs AND Improve Outcomes

Bump up the Connect Power Buzz Factor

What is our Connect Power Buzz Factor?

Online buzz is a measure of social messaging impact. It’s the amount of tweets, Facebook shares, You-tube videos, Tumblr posts, and social engagement around a certain issue. For instance, my thought is that this year, the presidential campaign will show us the importance of buzz compared to corporate funding of campaigns. To a large extent, money can’t buy our interest, so buzz is a good measure of which political party is truly grassroots. This might be the first campaign where our aggregate voices are louder than all of the political ads.

You can

Continue reading Bump up the Connect Power Buzz Factor

Pyschiatric survivors can fund entrepreneurial mental health revolution

(This was originally posted on Mad In America.)

How We Want to Create Entrepreneurial Mental Health Revolution:

I’ve been working for 2 1/2 years on a system to provide non-medical care for people with emotional distress. I want it to be evidence based, peer provided, non-clinical, completely voluntary, cheap enough to pay for ourselves AND available nationwide and worldwide very soon. This is what I think our community needs to create entrepreneurial mental health revolution, and after spending around 6000 hours working through the permutations with much of your online input, I think we’re just about there.

Continue reading Pyschiatric survivors can fund entrepreneurial mental health revolution

Emotional Distress is Temporary

Recently I got an email from Jennifer Maurer from the Mother Bear Community Action Network. I met her at the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care Conference in North Carolina last September. She says, “I would love for you to write a page on ‘How Emotional Distress is Temporary.’ ”

Emotional distress is temporary and it comes when our personal resources are overwhelmed. We begin to get a bit separated from reality. Here is the biochemical mechanism for how this emotional distress is temporary and reversible. It may be super happy or super sad moods, it may be seeing

Continue reading Emotional Distress is Temporary

Douglas Coulter: PTSD is a reaction, not an illness

Lasting Emotional Reactions to War, Rape, or Crime Are Not A Disease

A PTSD reaction is not an illness. Trauma is an event that requires adjustment of human thinking and life, moving and adapting in a survival situation. Combat, prison, rape, burns, and many other events can force us to reevaluate our boundaries and self image.

Douglas Coulter rode this rig halfway across the country to Alternatives 2011, the national mental health recovery conference. Here is his story of a PTSD reaction.

Here is my story:

“Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted…” Matthew 5:4.

Continue reading Douglas Coulter: PTSD is a reaction, not an illness