When A Good Night’s Sleep Isn’t Enough – Narcolepsy At Work

As Shannon read the driving direction, she fell asleep again. This wasn’t the first time, in fact, she’d done it after every direction. Her inability to stay awake had become a problem, and she decided to finally see a doctor. The doctor informed her she has narcolepsy.

Narcolepsy is a rare neurological condition that disrupts sleep patterns. Disrupted sleep leads to sleep attacks, the sudden need to sleep during the day. It can also cause sleep hallucinations and sometimes cataplexy, which is sudden loss of muscle control.  These symptoms all make it challenging to manage narcolepsy at work.

In this episode of Silent Superheroes, we’ll learn what narcolepsy and how it’s different than feeling sleepy a lot.  Shannon explains how and why she got diagnosed, and the surprising preferred way she manages narcolepsy at work. Shannon will share her experiences working with narcolepsy and share a few simple things that a business can do to support a narcoleptic employee.

Links

  • Geniuslink, the company Shannon co-founded (business)
  • The Research Is Clear, Long Hours Backfire (article)
  • Xyrem Patent Dispute (article)

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience living with, and managing, mental illness. For that reason, please consult with your care provider before making a change to your treatment approach.

It’s important to take your mental health seriously. Consequently, if you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

You can help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast by leaving us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Purgatory in Paris – The Road To A Mental Health ERG

Max was 20, in an unfamiliar neighborhood in Paris, thousands of miles from home, desperately unhappy and in tears.

Depression can take a grip on anyone, at any time. Imagine being a 20 year old student, doing an internship in a foreign country that involves calling hairdressers all day and asking them how much a haircut costs. In addition to a boring internship, your family, friends and new girlfriend are thousands of miles away, and your host family is mainly in it for the money. These are the circumstances that overwhelmed Max and lead him to wander the streets of Paris in his depression. Fortunately, Max is the son of a clinical psychologist and he recognized the signs of depression. On returning to the US, he sought care and began a program of treatment.

In this episode of Silent Superheroes, Max tells the story of his internship in Paris that lead him to seek treatment for depression and anxiety. Because he’s tried many medications, he’ll talk about some of the more serious side effects he’s experienced with them. He’ll also talk about some of the questionable therapists he’s worked with and we’ll discuss the complexity of mental health care under the US healthcare system. Max will share his plan for his Mental Health ERG (Employee Resource Group) at Limeaid.

CORRECTIONS : Max asked to correct two things he said in the recording. Klonopin is a Schedule IV drug, not Schedule I as he said in the recording. In addition to that correction, Gregory Peck was chairman of the American Cancer Society.

Note : If you are a member of a mental health ERG at your workplace I’d love to talk to you. Please reach out via the contact form at www.silentsuperheroes.com.

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience living with, and managing, mental illness. For that reason, please consult with your care provider before making a change to your treatment approach.

It’s important to take your mental health seriously. Consequently, if you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

You can help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast by leaving us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

The Monster Behind You – Living And Working With BPD

“It’s not you, you just don’t see the giant monster behind you that I’m reacting to”

Kellie Wagner, CEO @ Collective

What do you know about Borderline Personality Disorder? The answer to that question for most people is “not a lot”. So, why do we know so little compared to other mental illnesses like anxiety and depression? One reason is that BPD only occurs in around 1% of the population, so you’re less likely to run into someone who has it. The more likely reason is that that people working with BPD don’t speak up.

Popular culture likes to portray BPD in the most extreme way possible, for example, Glenn Close boiling a pet rabbit in the movie Fatal Attraction. If that was the first thing someone might remember if you said “I have BPD”, would you go around telling people?

In this episode of Silent Superheroes, Kellie shares some of her personal experiences working with BPD, the tools she uses to manage it, and some of the ways it’s affected her career. Above all, we’ll learn that working BPD is manageable, and is compatible with forging a successful career.

Links

  • Collective D&I Consultancy (website)
  • NIMH Overview of Borderline Personality Disorder (resource)
  • I Hate You, Don’t Leave Me by Jerold J Kreisman (book)
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (resource)
  • BPD Family (organization)
  • Kellie’s social (LinkedIn)

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience living with, and managing, mental illness. For that reason, please consult with your care provider before making a change to your treatment approach.

It’s important to take your mental health seriously. Consequently, if you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Healing From PTSD And The Trauma of Sexual Assault, Lauren’s Story

According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, one in five women will be a victim of rape at some point in their lives. If that number shocks you, it’s because many victims of sexual assault and rape cope with their trauma in silence. In 2017, the silence broke as women started speaking out on social media through the #metoo movement.

In this episode of Silent Superheroes, we meet Lauren, a software engineer from Australia who was a victim of rape as a teenager, leaving her with PTSD. Unable to tell anyone for more than a year, Lauren dropped out of high-school and struggled with panic attacks. Eventually, her journey of healing from PTSD began by writing a letter about her experience to her mum. Lauren has come to terms with her trauma through psychologists offices, medication, and with the support of family, friends and now colleagues. While coming to terms with her trauma, she studied to be a software engineer, and is now forging a successful career in technology.

Links

  • Finding a psychiatrist in Australia and New Zealand (resource)
  • National Sexual Violence Research Center (resource )

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are talking about their personal experience with mental illness. Because they are not trained medical professionals, please consult your care provider before making a change to your treatment plan.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need help healing from PTSD, you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast, please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Accepting Yourself and Accommodating Employees with ADHD – Scott’s Journey

“I don’t want to be anybody else, I want to be me.” – Scott

Scott is part of an active ADHD community on Twitter, focusing on ADHD advocacy in the UK.  It was while working as an online bingo presenter a colleague suggested he might be on the autistic spectrum, and that suggestion put Scott on his path to his ADHD diagnosis.  Now, Scott is no longer content with “fitting in” and isn’t going to apologize for his ADHD. Because of this, Scott advocates on behalf of the ADHD community for greater acceptance of the condition and the people who live with it.

In this episode, Scott walks us through his journey from disruptive kid, through cruise host, online bingo caller and customer service in a call center. We also talk about the US and UK mental health care systems, concluding that they’re different and neither is good.  Scott tells us about his movie “Misunderstood”, currently in development, about a character with ADHD. Finally, Scott and I discuss his communities answer to the question “How could employers do a better job of accommodating employees with ADHD?”

Links

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience with mental illness. They are not trained medical professionals.  If you are considering making a change to your treatment plan, please contact a medical professional.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Getting Men’s Mental Health Out of The Shadows

Competitive, adventurous, life of the party, a rock.

All things friends might have said about Reid before, through the course of a year, he experienced a series of setbacks: a close friend died, he was laid off and he broke his arm while snowboarding.  Those setbacks put him in a depression that robbed him of his interest in family, friends and getting up into the mountains. Armed with a diagnosis, Reid tackled depression like any injury: repair, rehab and build the muscle that reduces the risk of further injury.  Now, as a result of directing the video “Shadows : A Conversation About Men’s Mental Health”, Reid has become a mental health advocate. He encourages men to share their experience of struggling with mental health.

In this episode of Silent Superheroes, Reid and I discuss why men aren’t good at talking about their feelings.  We make the case that mental and physical health are the same. Reid shares the support he got for mental health at the tech company he works for, and gives a template for the experience everyone should have managing mental health at work.

Links

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience with mental illness.  They are not trained medical professionals.  If you are considering making a change to your treatment plan, please contact a medical professional.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Rachel’s Resoul Revolution, Anorexia and Working With Depression

Meet Rachel. She’s a coach and the founder of the Resoul Revolution, a transformational retreat for women in leadership.  In this episode, Rachel tells us about the dark force she experienced as a child. She describes it as a curse that followed her into her adult life, but because the dark force came and went without obvious cause, she didn’t know what it was . The dark force showed itself in different ways, for example anorexia, bad relationships and getting laid off from work. Rachel tried to escape the dark force by making jewelry and becoming a coach, but when it didn’t go away she turned to face it. She now calls it by a different name, depression. In this episode of Silent Superheroes, we follow Rachel’s journey and find out how she manages her depression without medication. She tells us how working with depression influences her as a coach, and introduces her new project, the Resoul Revolution.

Links

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience with mental illness.  They are not trained medical professionals.  If you are considering making a change to your treatment plan, please contact a medical professional.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Kent – Depression and living in the time of not enoughness

Throughout his career, Kent always tried to help people understand the “why” for their work. That desire lead him to be a recruiter and then an HR leader. It was while leading an HR team that the competing demands of “the system” of work and his own “why” came into conflict. Frozen by the side of the road on his way to work, Kent found himself at the edge of oblivion.  He reinvented himself as an Agent of Evolutionary Change. Now he works with individuals, leaders and organizations, helping them navigate the increasing speed and complexity of modern work through continued personal and professional development. And, while the depression hasn’t left him, he’s learned how to manage depression at work by treating every moment of joy or sadness as a workout. That workout is helping him build the muscle that keeps depression at bay.

Links

  • WHO Report “Depression Is The Leading Cause of Disability” (article)
  • David White “The Three Marriages: Reimagining Work, Self and Relationship” (book)
  • Deloitte 2018 Human Capital Report “The Symphonic C-suite” (article)
  • Lenny Kravitz – Dream (song)

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience with mental illness.  They are not trained medical professionals.  If you are considering making a change to your treatment plan, please contact a medical professional.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.


Getting OK With Being Good Enough, Richard’s journey with ADD and Depression

Richard is a Program Manager living with ADD and depression.  In this episode, Richard walks us through half a lifetime with undiagnosed ADD at work.  His journey to diagnosis starts out as the smart kid who could finish his homework in five minutes and ends as an adult taking on too much responsibility to get the rush of feeling valued.  After “acing” the lab test for ADD, Richard is on a different journey. The journey to getting OK with being good enough.

Links

Getting Support

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience with mental illness.  They are not trained medical professionals.  If you are considering making a change to your treatment plan, please contact a medical professional.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.

Feeling sad or feeling nothing, Jared’s journey with ADHD & Depression

Jared is a Systems Engineer working in the technology sector. In this episode of Silent Superheroes, we learn that depression distorts Jared’s visual perception of the world and how ADHD is a problem of time management not attention. Jared’s long inventory of medication leads to a discussion of side effects and the complexity of self-monitoring. We discuss how Jared’s interrupt-driven job dictates his priorities and helps him manage ADHD at work, and how keeping busy distracts him from depression. But with systems engineering comes night shifts, and being disconnected from people let his darker thoughts and depression creep in.

Getting Help

Remember, the people you hear on Silent Superheroes are people talking about their personal experience with mental illness.  They are not trained medical professionals.  If you are considering making a change to your treatment plan, please contact a medical professional.

Take your mental health seriously. If you need to speak to someone you can call 1-800-273-8255, or text crisistextline.org on 741741. Both provide 24×7 confidential counseling to people in the United States. Worldwide visit http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

To help others find the Silent Superheroes podcast please leave us a review on iTunes or your favorite podcasting service.