Dodge the Ball of Stress in Mental Illness

Dodge the Ball of Stress in Mental Illness by Linda Gillian #WUVIP #TheWellnessUniverse #Ball
Life can get pretty testing and at times it can feel like an automated tennis ball machine is aiming straight for us; firing off a hundred miles an hour as we scurry in all directions trying to hit just one of the jet propelled missiles!

When we are not totally focused on the task at hand, nothing seems to work and we end up having to gather up all those scattered balls.

Being a “horse and cart” sort of person at heart, I find juggling to keep up with ever-evolving technology a pain in the rump. Although I have to say, I am rather proud of my recent social media prowess which has improved mega-fold out of dire necessity in building my online business.

I like deadlines and I love a healthy challenge to test the grey matter – this is good, or what I call “light” stress, but I have also known the grueling implications of darker stress. Having been admitted to psychiatric wards on three traumatic occasions between 1993 – 2009, with a diagnosis of stress-induced Brief Reactive Psychosis. Each episode being caused by a chemical imbalance in my brain, triggered by long-term unresolved emotional stress (the key word here being ‘unresolved’), and in the aftermath, I struggled with debilitating anxiety and panic attacks.

Stressors of a different nature don’t seem to create a problem for me and this has certainly proved to be the case across turbulent times in recent years. Between 2008 – 2012 I first lost my father, then my mother and two years later my dear friend passed away suddenly the day before I flew to Canada for the imminent birth of my first grandson. In 2013, I was faced with a sudden loss of income and disruptive changes in all areas of my personal and working life I had to think and act on the run. After two weeks of seclusion in a caravan on friends’ property, I registered my new business, packed up for storage, put my unit up for rent, and booked a long haul flight from my adopted home of over 30 years in Australia back to the Northern Hemisphere; where my family are all now living scattered around Britain, Europe, and Canada.

Wouldn’t you know it, this year that darned tennis ball gadget started firing financial restrictions and limitations at my business goals?

I’ve been caught in seemingly insurmountable “catch 22” situations of being unable to work on my visitors’ visa when I am visiting my daughter and young family in Ontario Canada. Without an income to show, I’m unable to apply for a loan in Australia to inject into my business. Year round worldwide travel insurance costs a fortune (but I’m sure glad I had it when I broke my foot in Canada!!). Expensive doctors’ visits to simply renew prescriptions are ongoing, but as my history of mental episodes is classified as a “pre-existing condition,” emergency hospital expenses, if needed, will not be covered anyway. This, in itself, is a huge stress (not of a good kind) on myself and family during my current transient situation. The silver lining in all of this shows that these types of stressors do not trigger my mental condition.

Quitting is not an option!

I am 100% committed to the mission of sharing my personal experience and insights with mental health and have started writing my bio “INSIDE, LOOKING OUT ~ My journey with Mental Health & Sensitive Awakening.” The process of writing my book is a journey unto itself and it is evolving in its own way in its own time. I consider that I have invested wisely and with careful consideration for the success and future of my online business, I am extremely fortunate to be able to occasionally spend time in Ontario, supporting my daughter in completing her nursing studies and enjoying the precious early years of my two little grandsons.

NO, I will not give up my mission, I will not halt my progress and return to Australia where I could “get a job.” Not even today on DAY 87 of my self-imposed deadline of 90 days to see income from my business endeavors. In January this year, I pushed through tough personal challenges and made an oath to honour my passion for Mental Health Awareness. The decision to jump into this new chapter in my life and speak out has not been quick and easy. I truly hope that sharing my journey will not only help people struggling with mental issues, but also bring better understanding for families, friends, and the wider community to help reduce the STIGMA of Mental Illness. If I can help just one person, it has all been worthwhile.

When out at sea and the wind changes, nothing is to be achieved by jumping ship; but by lowering the sails and changing tack is a wise choice, and THIS I must do. Excuse me now as I recluse up my fairy tree to meditate for clarification and guidance, I won’t be down until I have the next move worked out.

Oh, and can someone please turn off that infuriating tennis ball machine?! 


♥ Linda Gillan

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