By Tim Ryan | CONTRIBUTOR |

Note from the Founder

Under normal circumstances, a significant portion of the population is suffering from some form of mental health issue, and / or are impacted by substance or alcohol abuse or addiction.

Also under normal circumstances, mental health awareness has constantly been a topic that needs a greater presence in the hearts and minds of the general public

As anyone reading this blog can understand and appreciate – we are not living under normal circumstances.

For some insight on one area where the heightened need for mental health awareness exists, we have asked our friend Tim Ryan from Dope To Hope to share his thoughts on walking out recovery during the pandemic.

~ Jerry Avenaim

So, we have hope that we are coming out of the 2020 pandemic within a pandemic, that would be COVID-19, mental health and addiction. This COVID-19 flipped our world, lifestyle and way of life upside down. This also set so many more people either into deeper depths of addiction along with mental health issues or they unleashed them for people like nothing anyone has ever experienced.

This is the time we all try to come together.  That is easier said then done. Fist off people, many people, are still not willing to get together face to face for a recovery meeting, so they stay online. I would much rather been in person then via zoom but that’s me. On the flip side we are able to connect with people worldwide that’s kind of cool.

Are the online meetings the way of the future?  I hope not, I miss seeing my friends and like-minded people in person.  See we all need purpose and connection.  COVID-19 stopped all of that and set in place an online world of support groups, therapy and so much more in the online world.  Yes, it worked for many people but for others it was the start of the downfall.

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When people have a daily routing changed 100% you can have all the tools in your back pocket but when we do not speak our truths that little voice creeps into our head and states it is ok to not take our meds, it is ok to have one drink it is ok to smoke this or snort that and we are off to the races back into the addiction game.  What a horrible place to be…. If this has happened, put your hand up and ask for help. Asking for help is the hardest part of the journey.

We are in Florida now and meetings are open, life is at full swing, when we are in LA everything is still shut down, yes, meetings too. Very slowly life will come back to normal.  Or will it?  What is the new normal?  We will only know this as life unfolds over the next few years.

Donate to support Mental Health
Donate to support Mental Health

WHY MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS IS MORE CRUCIAL THAN EVER

What is alive is mental health issues and addiction. Both are thriving and destroying lives in record numbers.  What needs to be changed?  EVERYTHING DOES. Our system is broken and has been for years. Most of the families we get calls for interventions or guidance are in turmoil, have zero ideas what help is available and that all help is dictated by either health insurance or cash.  These are things many families do not have at this time, in the middle of a pandemic. Who is going to help these families? You see this is most of America right now.

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Living paycheck to paycheck with no or limited health insurance.  How can we be the greatest country in the world and have no universal health care? Simple access to treatment or to get stabilized on medications? Life is hard enough when we have mental health and/or addiction issues, now when we want help it is such a struggle to navigate options.

Let’s focus on the positives. We have access to meeting, therapy and so much more via zoom, facetime or a simple phone call. So, in these times, we need to put in the work to keep not only us but our friends on the right road.  We need to invest in ourselves, talk about our issues and have a solid plan of action in place.  If you need to time block out your day hour by hour, please do so.  Remember this is life and death for many and freedom for others.

No one knew what COVID-19 would bring and do to our lifestyle, our way of life, we are all warriors, and we know how to adapt to many different situations. So, let’s adapt, embrace the change and more forward with our heads held high. This too shall pass. Life is all preceptive. Is the glass half full or half empty? Every day do a kind deed for someone else without telling anyone.

By Tim Ryan, Author of the book

From Dope to Hope:
A Man in Recovery

mental-health-foundation-tim-ryan-book-cover-from-dope-to-hope

By Tim Ryan, Author of the book

From Dope to Hope:
A Man in Recovery

mental-health-foundation-tim-ryan-book-cover-from-dope-to-hope

Donate to support Mental Health
Donate to support Mental Health

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About the Author: Tim Ryan – Contributor

mental-health-foundation-blog-author-bio-headshot-tim-ryan-dope-to-hope-150x150Listed as one of the top 100 visionary leaders in the world (2018), Tim Ryan is famously known as A&E’s Dope Man and a substance abuse interventionist and Jennifer Gimenez-Ryan, world renowned model, actress, substance abuse counselor, and reality TV star aren’t your typical celebrity couple in Hollywood. Not only are they famous and in active recovery, they are both proactive in changing lives. Sometimes, even helping to save them.

Tim and Jenn speak to audiences all over the world. Whenever possible, they travel and work together during public speaking engagements. They inspire their audiences to live a more fulfilling, passionate and purposeful life.

Media Appearances includeA&E – Celebrity Rehab with Dr Drew – Celebrity Wife Swap – Chicago Tribune – Fox News – HLN – The DoctorsThe Oprah Winfrey Network – The Real Housewives of Beverly HillsToday – Newsweek – USA Today