More about me: The Liebster Award

So, My Anxiety Matters was kind enough to nominate me for the Liebster Award, travels from blogger to blogger as a way to promote great content.  Thanks so much!

I really like this!  It’s nice to see bloggers recognize others.  There are a few really interesting parts of this award, including that you have to answer a series of questions.  Those are below:

1. What’s the best thing about where you live?

The sense of community.  People in Allentown – and the Lehigh Valley – generally care about each other.  The pay attention.  They are informed.  We have great corporate citizens, caring residents and wonderful non-profits.  It makes me proud to represent them.

2. Who’s your idol?

This is a really, really hard one, because there’s a few.  I don’t know if “idol” is possible for me to answer, but closest thing I can come up with is Abraham Lincoln.  Not only for what he accomplished, but for what he accomplished in the face of incredible depression.

3. Favourite inspirational quote?

Easy:  “Here on Earth, God’s work must truly be our own.” – John F. Kennedy.  It encompasses my view on religion, politics and society perfectly.  Prayers in not enough.  The only thing that is enough – or close to it – is action.

4. The scariest thing you’ve ever done?

This is really difficult.  Arguably pushing forward in the face of some of my anxiety attacks.  Bizarrely, writing the article where I first “came out” as clinically anxious/depressed wasn’t scary, though it impacted my career – and my life – in ways that I could never have dreamt.

Thinking about it logically, this speech, given on the floor of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives:

I remember being more nervous for that one than any other speech I have ever given.

5. Your inspiration for writing?

Depends on what you mean.  In terms of blog writing: A desire to “spread the gospel,” so to speak, on mental health, and bring an issue out of the darkness that has been kept there for far, far too long.  I’ll confess that there’s a self-promotional aspect to it as well; as I’ve mentioned on a few other mediums, I have a Young Adult book coming out in the first half of 2018, and the book deals with mental health and mental illness.

6. What do you do to relax your mind?

Hahaha.

Okay, okay.  That’s not fair.  I do relax, as best I can.

  • Writing/working on the sequel to my novel.
  • Just took up meditating.  Am a big fan so far!
  • Playing with my kids.
  • Video games.  I love video games, and I don’t care what anyone has to say about it!

7. Favourite feel-good song?

So hard, but here is what I went with.  LOVE Haim.

8. Your happy place?

Rehobath Beach, Delaware.  Outside of the Ice Cream Store.  Kids JAMMING ice cream in their faces.  Me with a Red Velvet Sundae.  Yum.

9. Bravest thing you’ve ever done?

That one is easy.

10. Your favourite book?

Again, a difficult one to answer.  I am a pretty avid reader.  Obviously Harry Potter, but I think that goes without saying.  But favorite individual book?  The one coming to mind right now is The Dome by Stephen King.  A book about monsters inside and out.

11. Your advice for someone struggling with their mental health?

I suppose two-fold:

  1. You’re not alone.  You’re never alone.  1 in 5 adults suffer from mental illness every year, and there are thousands of people – if not millions – that will drop everything to help you find peace.  Don’t give up, because there are millions of us out there – including me – that are living proof that you can live a good and happy life, despite what you are suffering from.
  2. Seek the help that you deserve, and don’t feel an ounce of shame.

There’s a pay it forward component to this, and I’m going to have to find some others to nominate, so let’s just take a rain-check on that one.  And again, thanks so much to My Anxiety Matters for the nomination! I highly recommend you go and check out the blog to see a very personal view of anxiety.

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