Mental health is . . . being yourself.
A prescriptive and positive guide, illustrated with line drawings, making the case that mental well-being, like physical health, can be strengthened over time and with specific techniques
We all want to feel less anxiety, guilt, anger and sadness. We want to obsess less and be less lonely, free ourselves from our demons, compulsive habits, and stress. But as humans (unlike rocks) we experience all of these. And paradoxically, trying to avoid and control them only makes things worse.
Having struggled with serious mental illness for many years himself, Mark Freeman has become a dedicated mental-health advocate and coach. He makes the case that instead of trying to feel less and avoid pain and stress, we need to build emotional fitness, especially our capacity for strength, balance and focus. With wit, compassion, and depth of experience and anecdotes, he shows that we can recover from many mental disorders, from mild to very serious, at all ages and stages of life, and even if other methods have failed. Freeman's innovative approach makes use of a range of therapeutic techniques, mindfulness training, peer support, humor, and common sense.
“The best book, by far, I’ve read on mental health and fitness. Mark has become a trusted friend, thought-partner, and counselor. By reading this book, you too can gain a wealth of knowledge and actionable steps to live a richer, fuller, and more present life. I really couldn’t recommend it more.” — Brad Stulberg, co-author of Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success
“Mark Freeman has created a roadmap to calm the worried mind, chock-full of useful practices, no-nonsense strategies, and trench-harvested wisdom.” — Mark Wolynn, author of It Didn’t Start With You: How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle
“This sensible and highly practical approach to mental health offers a welcome antidote to the fear-based thinking that has become all too prevalent in our culture. Try some of Freeman’s exercises for yourself—you might be surprised by how readily even longstanding emotional roadblocks can be cleared away!” — Gail A. Hornstein, author of Agnes’s Jacket: A Psychologist's Search for the Meanings of Madness
Mark Freeman is a mental health coach and human-centered design workshop facilitator based in Toronto. After recovering from severe mental illness himself, he now focuses on leveraging technology and design to help others navigate the complex changes necessary to improve and maintain great mental health and fitness. He is the co-founder of the online mental health community Everybody Has a Brain, and he is a Stanford Medicine X ePatient Scholar.