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Celebrating Women's History Month | DOWNLOAD Your FREE eBOOK

Are You Faithfully Celebrating Women's History Month? Yes! We celebrate all successful women, but not because they are greater than we are.

“I’m old. I have cellulite. I’m 10 lbs overweight. My husband doesn’t look at me the way he used to. I don’t love him the way I did before. What happened to my life?”

I listened to a friend of mine tell me about how she just didn’t feel like waking up to go to work because she hated life. “This is not the life I planned. I’m successful, but I’m not happy. Nothing makes me happy.”

As we celebrate Women’s History Month in March, I thought it would be interesting to look at the contrast between what women want and what we actually get.

For many years, women have been celebrated during the month of March to highlight their extraordinary contributions to their countries. Both here in the U.S. and internationally, women have left a mark in history that deserves celebration, and this year, the theme for Women’s History Month is "Honoring Trailblazing Women in Labor and Business.”

As a businesswoman, I am very much aware of the challenges that threaten success. The greatest struggles that kept me from wanting to get out of bed, like my friend, were financial challenges, uncertainty, lack of confidence, strong competitors, and my inability to find “loyal” staff members. All of the areas were extremely challenging, however, the greatest struggle I had was establishing work/life balance consistently.

Day after Day, I work with women who feel unworthy, devalued, uncelebrated, and insecure. Interestingly enough, if you walked past one of them on the street, you would never know that they’ve thrown in the towel on happiness, contentment, and peace. Why? Because she looks amazing! She drives a luxury car (or something close to it). Her makeup is flawless. Her children are adorable and well dressed. She works hard. People love her. She is successful. She is all that; but, she’s dying inside. I just described the clients that I work with, but I also described me. My passion to help others came from a long, hard look in the mirror. When each of us looks into the mirror we should see one thing: HUMANITY. We are all HUMAN. This means that we all struggle. We all have insecurities. We all want to be loved. We all want to be valued. We all want success.

 

Are You Faithfully Celebrating This Month?

We Celebrate Successful Women; But, Not Because They’re Greater Than Us.

 

This month, we celebrate Women’s History in the United States…but many women harbor deep pain and problems.

Beneath the passion, behind all of the great success we find ourselves also motivated by a deep, painful guilt I, myself, know a great deal about. You may even question the importance of celebrating someone's life that doesn't quite model yours. Maybe women's history means nothing to you.

Well, it really doesn’t matter if you’re in the beginning phase of history making or not. False comparisons are made when you’ve no personal success as a point of reference.  

When March comes around, we ironically invite “the comparison trip” into our heads. Guilt floods in when you want the success that you find in another person.

Don’t feel embarrassed by it. This particular battle is a hard one to fight. And maybe it’s not just during the month of March, maybe it every month of the year that you struggle with illegitimate comparisons to your friends, coworkers, societal icons, or your sister.

 

- There’s Only One Way To Being You

 

Wherever you are; no matter how you’re going to “get there,” you’re not fulfilled until you arrive at your destination. The truth is, I don’t have a remedy or cure for the guilt you deal with.

I do, however, have a solution to enable you to walk the happy road to being you. The manifestation of who you are means you’ll be celebrated this month. There’s no need to wait.

I’m calling it my “positive step approach.” Instead of working on your guilt trip, I’m going to work on your final destination. This isn’t the place you’re at, at the moment.

Let me take you on the journey to become you! This is the same journey that the women we celebrate this month took to ultimate success. It was never an overnight success, and I won’t make it one for you. The journey ahead is a serious commitment that you have to make to achieve your personal goals.

-----------Once you’re in the rightful place, there will be no one else to compare with.

To do that for you, I’m releasing my book for free this month. At the cost of nothing, it’s put directly into your hands. Your final commitment, to end the guilt, is to read it. I’ve never given something so valuable away for free.

I Will Not Put A Price Tag On What’s Rightfully Yours. I can only do it during this month.

You have an entire celebration to go through. And we’re now walking you past the emptiness, anxiety and void. Embrace the fullness that’s yours.

Do it now. Open your copy, and discover how powerful success becomes when you become you. We’re ready to celebrate Women’s History Month, but this time it’s for you to make YOUR MARK and success this time. I know…you already have it in you!

- J.J.

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The Beautiful One - Prince | The World Mourns | Simple Tips for Grief & Loss

Grieving Prince’s Sudden Death

Prince

Prince

Last week the shocking news of Prince’s death was felt across the globe. The loss of the legendary musical icon has left his family, friends, and followers’ worldwide, devastated and in mourning.  Social media was flooded with crushed fans and loved ones expressing their grief and sharing stories that celebrated Prince and his legacy that spanned 40 years.

He was a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, won 7 Grammy’s, a Golden Globe, and an Academy Award for “Purple Rain.” He had a unique and powerful gift, as well as a positive and accepting attitude that people just gravitated towards. He connected and provided comfort to so many. Prince stood as a symbol of hope and that positive changes were just around the corner. His death came way too soon, but his influence and inspiration will transcend for generations

How do you deal with the loss of an Icon?

Losing an idol like Prince can be difficult and emotionally confusing. Some may wonder why they have such strong feelings because they didn’t know him on a personal basis. This is a completely normal feeling. Prince has been a part of our lives for decades and we have followed his life and evolution as an artist. He’s gotten many through difficult times by his words and what he represents. When that is suddenly gone, the feelings can be similar to the loss of a good friend.

Try out these tips to help you in your grieving process:

·      Allow yourself to grieve. There is no rule book when it comes to grieving. Just because you’re mourning an icon doesn’t make the pain any less valid. Allow yourself to feel the emotion so you can better address it.

·      Express yourself! Reach out to family, friends, and others on social media. Being able to share and connect your emotions with others is an essential part of the grieving process. With Prince being a legendary figure, there is a very large community available to you that understand exactly what you’re going through. 

·      Celebrate his life and continue his legacy. Prince had such a positive soul and would want his life to be celebrated and his advocacy for positive change and equality to continue. Listen to your favorite Prince songs and represent all that he stood for.

In honor of the legendary musician, let’s continue Prince’s positivity and promote a beautiful, equal, and hopeful world.

 

AUTHOR: Danielle James, Psychology Intern

 

Danielle is a recent psychology graduate from the University of Central Florida. She has a passion for helping individuals identify and work through emotional and mental health concerns to provide a higher quality of life. Her goals include achieving her Psy.D in Clinical Psychology that allows for a deeper understanding of future clients and a more interactive perspective.

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3 Beauty Tips to Improve Your Mood: Get BRAIN-SMART!

3 Beauty Tips to Improve Your Mood: Get BRAIN-SMART!

If you look like a MESS, you will FEEL like a mess! With the hustle and bustle of today's pop culture, it seems harder and harder to keep up with beauty and fashion trends. This article is designed to give you three simple tips to LOOK better and improve your MOOD at the same time.

I spent ten years as a fashion and print model; and I've walked over 2,000 runways! Now, I want to take the time to combine my "beauty-knowledge" with my "brain-power."

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Remember, the definition of MOOD is a "temporary state of mind." That means that your mood may change from day to day or from month to month. One of the most important skills that I teach my clients is the technique of "managing emotions" from hour to hour throughout the day. Maintaining emotional stability throughout the day will give you greater focus, improve relationships and help you make more effective decisions. Additionally, you can also manage your emotions by choosing to LOOK better. Yes! That's right! Regardless of your age, profession or physical attributes, you can FEEL better about yourself TODAY when you embrace these three simple beauty tips:

1. GROOMING

2. ACCESSORIZING

3. PAMPERING

Let's get started!

GROOMING is the first step to a more "manicured" appearance. Do you ever wonder why some women look flawless even when casually hanging out or shopping? Oftentimes it's because they pay attention to details! Your eye brows, nails (fingers and toes), and hair must be maintained at all times! For me, I believe the brows are the most important aspect of the face. I spend a great deal of time making sure that my brows are groomed perfectly. This is my most important tip! If you want, you can stop reading here because if you focus on your eye brows only, you will begin to look and feel better!

Remember, it is so important to keep your brows waxed, plucked and manicured at all times. Even if you do not wear makeup…KEEP YOUR EYE-BROWS FLAWLESS!!! The video below will help you get started if you are a beginner, and give you some additional tips if you are already a brow-pro!

 

Also, when it come to grooming, it is necessary to keep your finger and toe nails manicured. You do not have to wear colored polish or acrylics to look groomed and flawless; but, you must pay attention to detail. If you wear your nails short, keep them filed and clean; and always keep hand lotion with you. There is nothing worse than shaking hands with someone that has rough, dry hands.

Another grooming must is to keep your hair NEAT! No matter what hairstyle you choose, make sure that it compliments your face and it looks neat. You always can tell a well-put-together person by how they maintain their hair.

If you make intentional upgrades in these grooming areas, you will certainly begin to feel better about yourself.

 

ACCESSORIZING is the second step to a more “put-together” YOU! Remember, accessories are the glue that holds an outfit together. Whether you are headed to the office or walking around the park, pay close attention to your accessories…and don’t forget that less is more. A simple pair of sunglasses, a simple bracelet, or earring can add just the right touch to make a statement and upgrade your mood. Look better...feel better! The video below is simple and to the point. There are some great tips to get you started. You may agree or disagree with some of the options, however, take a a risk and be creative!

Final tip...

PAMPERING is the third beauty step to boost your mood! Life is crazy, the kids are busy with activities, work is demanding and everyone needs YOU! Well, tell them to WAIT! Take an hour and a half to PAMPER you! Applying a little love and care to your chaotic world will not only boost your mood, but you will begin to feel better about yourself. Remember, you do not have to spend a lot of time on pampering...again, less is more!

Here are a few Ideas for pampering yourself...keep an open mind and be willing to be CREATIVE! Click the button below.

 

 

Respectfully yours,

Jada Jackson, LMHC-3.png


Jada Jackson  M.S., M.A., LMHC, NCC
Licensed Mental Health Counselor
Author, Talk Show Host, Life Coach and Communicator

Total Life Counseling Center  (407) 248 0030  1507 S. Hiawassee Road #101 Orlando FL 32835  
Email: jada@TotalLifeCounseling.com
Jada's TLC Page: http://www.totallifecounseling.com/counselors-orlando-therapists-counselors/jada-collins/

Jada’s website: Jadajackson.com
Website email: info@jadajackson.com
Blog: http://www.jadajackson.com/blog/
Media Room: http://www.jadajackson.com/new-gallery/

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UPENN Suicide

The death of Madison Holleran in January 2014 made national news at the time, and has recently resurfaced in a big way. Her suicide made waves, and it stands out for important reasons. It brings to surface the significance of mental health and the potentially detrimental effects unnoticed or unattended cries of help, or state of well being, can have. It also sheds light on the fact that college can be a breeding ground for depression, anxiety and other serious mental health problems that often go ignored. Many see one’s moodiness or unhappiness when first in college as adjusting or having a hard time making friends. Though often that is the case, the University of Pennsylvania tragedy shows that for some, mental declines are more than just stress, getting used to a new atmosphere, and a big change in life. Madison’s sadness and feelings of depression may have stemmed from her grades or feeling that she wasn’t meeting self-set expectations, but it is clear to me that an underlying mental health condition was at play.  

She was an Ivy League track star, seemingly happy and presenting a front of having everything together. A popular athlete can’t get depressed or have a mental illness, one may say. After the tragedy, everyone was shocked because by all appearances—on social media—Madison seemed too happy and “perfect” to be afflicted. The masking of social media unintentionally contributes to cases of depression and suicides, gone unaddressed before it’s too late. I think there are important lessons to take away from this tragic situation.

·      Don’t assume that because someone’s social media accounts appear to portray him/her as perfectly okay, that everything really is okay—it is easy to hide one’s true feelings or state of mind in that way.  

·      If someone asks for help, a courageous and hard thing to do when feeling depressed or coping with a mental health problem, do not make light of it or push the situation to the side expecting it to go away.

·      Push for the wellbeing of the person struggling; they are probably in a state of mind of not being concerned, or unable to care about their own health. Get them into treatment! If you see signs of serious issues, be persistent in getting the individual to a physician and/or therapy.

·      Assure your loved one that it’s okay to be sick. It is not their fault, a weakness, or a sign of imperfection. It is okay to have a health problem and get help. In Madison’s case, her depression and mental health crisis felt like a burden to her, and she saw it as a burden for her family. She did not want to cause her loved ones any inconvenience with the things she was going through. So she took matters into her own hands, in the only way that she felt she could.

Madison’s father James said, “We knew she needed help. She knew she needed help.” Depression overcame Madison, and its severity came as a shock to her family, who cared deeply and did all they knew how to do to help her. Sadly, no one could see or predict the strength of the monster she was fighting. Madison’s story is unfortunately not unique; too many other cases happen nearly every day of college students—people in general— succumbing to depression or mental illness and taking their own life. As I am sure Madison would want, her story can be an example to others struggling with depression, a glimmer of the harsh reality that mental illness can bring, and a warning— which families of one in such a situation should take to heart.

 

Author: Emily Simpson (Intern)

 

References:

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2542641/UPenn-shocked-freshman-track-star-Madison-Holleran-19-jumps-death.html

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5 Things Every Woman Should Know About Self-Esteem

1)            You marry and engage in relationships at the level of YOUR self-esteem.

2)            YOU teach people how to treat you based on how you treat yourself.

3)            YOUR success is based on how much YOU believe in YOU.

4)            Self-esteem is an EQUAL OPPORTUNITY commodity.

5)            YOUR individual expectations can ONLY be fulfilled when you embrace a   HEALTH self-concept.

You marry and engage in relationships at the level of YOUR self-esteem.  If you are unhappy in your marriage or your relationship, it is probably because you are disappointed that your partner is unsatisfactory. I am working with a client that is very angry that she is married to a man that didn’t tell her the truth about his financial struggles. She is now paying the bills to provide for the household and she has taken on the complete role of provider. Well, what should she do in a situation like this? Should she leave? Should she shame him into doing better financially? These situations are never easy and clear-cut. At best, she must decide how much she is willing to take and develop a strategy for her future. Remember, if you are in a draining relationship, I encourage you to take a long, good look in the mirror and examine YOUR self-esteem.

YOU teach people how to treat you based on how you treat yourself. Whether it is verbally or nonverbally, we are the sole instructors for how others treat us. Remember, what you tolerate…you ALLOW. Finding a happy balance of advocacy for our happiness is an important first step to healthier self-esteem. When we do not speak up or when we refuse to set healthy boundaries, others will take advantage. Did you know that ALL human beings are opportunists? YES, we are! That is the downside of human nature. Maybe some are more predator-like than others, but the truth is, if we do not establish healthy boundaries in our relationships, even those who love us most will take advantage of us. We can only blame OURSELVES for how people treat us. Food for thought.

YOUR success is based on how much YOU believe in YOU. Do you know that entrepreneurs who believe in themselves have a higher success rate in their businesses than those who are insecure about their abilities? It’s great to have a support system that believes in you, but if you don’t believe in yourself then no one else will buy into your vision or dream. Again, bad-breaks or bad-luck is not the demise of your success…but, it is how much you believe or do not believe in YOU. If your skill-set or knowledge-base needs a makeover, pursue options for continued education or personal development. Self-esteem in developed through increased competence, academic nurturing, family support, social engagement, physical acceptance and how you feel about your accomplishments. Take time to consider your strengths in each of these areas and make a commitment to do something about it.

Self-esteem is an EQUAL OPPORTUNITY commodity.  The great thing about self-esteem is the SELF-component. Yes, exactly, to develop healthy self-esteem begins and ends with SELF. Regardless of your ethnicity, race, socioeconomic background or your failures in life, YOU still have the power to make a change. Personal development NEVER ends. We are continuously growing and developing regardless of our age. I have a 55-year-old client, who is still working to build healthy relationships with family members and coworkers. This doesn’t mean that the client is deficient in any way, it just means that we ALL have the opportunity to continue our pursuit of happiness and healthy relationships. Therapy has been the best way for this client to grow and embrace a healthier self-concept.

YOUR individual expectations can ONLY be fulfilled when you embrace a HEALTHY self-concept.  Most of us are disappointed when our expectations go unfulfilled. Remember, we cannot control others, but we can control ourselves. As simple and this concept is, many of us spend a lifetime attempting to force others to change and to do things that will make our lives happy. News Flash: ONLY YOU CAN FULFILL YOUR EXPECTATIONS! Now, of course, others can contribute to your happiness, but at the end of the day, YOU are at the helm of the ship. How you allow others to treat you, the decisions YOU make, and YOUR belief in yourself will determine how fulfilled and happy your life with be.

Final Thought: It takes 21-days to change a bad habit. It takes 90 days to make it stick. It takes a lifetime to create your own happiness and it begins with embracing a healthier self-concept.

 

Respectfully yours,

Jada Jackson, LMHC-3.png


Jada Jackson  M.S., M.A., LMHC, NCC
Licensed Mental Health Counselor
Author, Talk Show Host, Life Coach and Communicator

Total Life Counseling Center  (407) 248 0030  1507 S. Hiawassee Road #101 Orlando FL 32835  
Email: jada@TotalLifeCounseling.com
Jada's TLC Page: http://www.totallifecounseling.com/counselors-orlando-therapists-counselors/jada-collins/

Jada’s website: Jadajackson.com
Website email: info@jadajackson.com
Blog: http://www.jadajackson.com/blog/
Media Room: http://www.jadajackson.com/new-gallery/

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JADA'S PERSONALS: GRIEF & BOBBI KRISTINA BROWN

The news of Bobbi Kristina’s accident was sudden and some might say shocking. As the daughter of 2 well known entertainers, Whitney Houston and Bobbi Brown, life for Bobbi wasn’t always easy. The pressure of the spotlight, the long drug history in the family, and the co-dependent relationship with her husband Nick Gordon, all played a role.

Was there anything anyone could have done to stop her? Were there any signs that lead up to this? We have the potential warning signs of someone at risk and the tips to help them get through it.

The potential warning signs of self-destruction or suicide:

  • Talking about feeling hopeless or have no reason to live.
  • Discusses feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
  • Feels like a burden to others.
  • Increase use of alcohol or drugs.
  • Behaves impulsively or reckless (acting abnormally anxious)
  • Change in sleep patterns
  • Displays extreme mood swings
  • Begin to give sentimental things away.

It’s important to not only know how to spot these warning signs, you need to know what to do once you have. These tips will give you a good grasp on what someone needs and what role you need to play if there are contemplating self-harm of any kind.

Open the conversation: A lot of times when someone is in a dark place or contemplating suicide, it’s difficult for him or her to seek help. If you notice a loved one’s behavior changing and becoming a concern, ask them what’s going on. It’s imperative you do it with compassion to avoid projecting feelings of shame or guilt onto the person.

Take action on potential danger. We can sometimes dismiss the cues leading up to a suicide because we don’t want to overreact, or we avoid sharing someone’s personal information so we don’t disrespect or offend him or her. But that is a mistake. Suicide is a dangerous and permanent decision a person cannot take back. If you know someone that is a potential threat to his or her self, tell someone. They will thank you later.

Try to understand their situation. One of the most common reasons a person commits suicide is because they feel alone and like a burden. So it’s crucial you try your best not to trivialize their situation and try to understand what they’re going through, even if you can’t relate to it.

Authors: Jada Jackson and Dani James (Intern)

Join the conversation. Leave your respectful and thoughtful comments below. Please share this conversation with others by clicking on the Share button below.

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Beauty & the Beast | Tips for Slaying Depression

Beauty & the Beast | Tips for Slaying Depression | Robin Williams | Jada Jackson, LMHC

Depression is a BEAST! Did you know that the more beautiful, talented and popular people fight harder to slay the beast of depression? Some of Hollywood’s most famous beauties have been diagnosed with depression: Ashley Judd, Owen Wilson, Demi Lovato, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Gwyneth Paltrow, Brooke Shields and more. Additionally, research suggests that pretty women are more likely to be depressed.

Regardless of one’s external attributes or undeniable talents, depression can strike the old, the young, the beautiful and the not-so-beautiful. According to USA Today, “Investigators in California said Oscar-winning actor Robin Williams was found dead in his bedroom, fully clothed, slightly suspended in a seated position with a belt around his neck, with one end wedged between a closet door frame. Lt. Keith Boyd, assistant chief deputy coroner for Marin County, Calif., said rigor mortis had already set in. Williams was found by his personal assistant, who broke in to his room when he failed to respond to knocks.”

Persoanlly, I remember Williams as the funny, zany Mork from the hit TV series Mork and Mindy; and later I adored him various movies and shows. However, my faviorite was his role as a therapist in Good Will Hunting. As we mourn the loss of a great talent, we can’t help consider the pain he must have endured. The talented actor committed suicide and left Americans shocked by his death. The common question that echoes throughout the nation is, “Why would he do this?” The answer was a very loud, “Because he was depressed.” Well, what are the implications of depression and what signs should we look for in our loved ones?

According to the National Institute of Mental Health:

There are several forms of depressive disorders.

Major depression,—severe symptoms that interfere with your ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and enjoy life. An episode can occur only once in a person’s lifetime, but more often, a person has several episodes.

Persistent depressive disorder—depressed mood that lasts for at least 2 years. A person diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder may have episodes of major depression along with periods of less severe symptoms, but symptoms must last for 2 years.

Some forms of depression are slightly different, or they may develop under unique circumstances. They include:

  • Psychotic depression, which occurs when a person has severe depression plus some form of psychosis, such as having disturbing false beliefs or a break with reality (delusions), or hearing or seeing upsetting things that others cannot hear or see (hallucinations).
  • Postpartum depression, which is much more serious than the “baby blues” that many women experience after giving birth, when hormonal and physical changes and the new responsibility of caring for a newborn can be overwhelming. It is estimated that 10 to 15 percent of women experience postpartum depression after giving birth.
  • Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which is characterized by the onset of depression during the winter months, when there is less natural sunlight. The depression generally lifts during spring and summer. SAD may be effectively treated with light therapy, but nearly half of those with SAD do not get better with light therapy alone. Antidepressant medication and psychotherapy can reduce SAD symptoms, either alone or in combination with light therapy.

Bipolar disorder, also called manic-depressive illness, is not as common as major depression or persistent depressive disorder. Bipolar disorder is characterized by cycling mood changes—from extreme highs (e.g., mania) to extreme lows (e.g., depression).

Understanding depression is the first step to developing a strategy to defeat the beast; and depression is a beast that must be slain with careful precision.

7 tips for Slaying Depression:

  • ENLIST a counselor to walk the journey with you. Remember, it’s okay to ask for help. Unfortunately, counseling has taken on a negative sterotype that prevents people from exploring therapeutic options. Having a therapist DOES NOT mean that you are “crazy.” Everyone could use someone to talk to and develop life strategies to manage life’s complexities. Talk therapy is a perfect way to address the stress in your life.
  • EXPLORE medication option with your physician and/or psychiatrist. Medication may be necessary and only your doctor or psychiatrist can prescribe it. However remember, medication alone may not be as effective as the pairing of medication and psychotherapy.
  • EXERCISE to balance brain chemicals. Once you discuss with your phycisian an appropriate exercise plan, stick to it. Exercise releases “feel good” chemicals in the brain that will ultimately stimulate positive moods. Once you commit to exercising regularly, you may find your mood changing in a more positive way.
  • EAT healthy to help repair your body’s deficiencies. Eating healthy and exercise go hand in hand. The more “good” you put into your body, the more “good” you get out of your body. High performance will come when you fuel up with nutritious foods.
  • SLEEP to regain balance in your body and mind. The chemicals released during deep sleep are necessary for growth in children and cell repair in adults.
  • REFRAME negative thoughts and replace with positive thoughts. Remember, what you think is what you feel and what you feel is what you do. With negative thoughts come negative emotions and ultimately negative behaviors. Thought the act of reframing, we can change how we think about a situation and replace the negative thought with a positive thought. Obviously this is not an overnight process, however, it is a necessary process to reduce symptoms of depression that may be triggered by faulty thought patterns.
  • DEVELOP a healthy support system. A negative support system will fuel your depressive symptom. Surround yourself with positive friends and family members that will support your efforts to maintain a healthy and happy life.

Remember, these are tips that will assist you in minimizing your depressive symptoms. However, if you or someone you know are overwhelmed with symptoms of depression, please contact a therapist that may assist you.

Reference:  National Institute of Mental Health http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml

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Coping with Grief and Depression- Aaron Hernandez

Aaron Hernandez

Hot, sexy and crazy? Is Aaron Hernandez going crazy behind bars? Well, the former New England Patriot may never play football again because his mental health challenges and substance use has landed him in big trouble. Hernandez became a member of the elite NFL fraternity when he signed a 5-year, $40 million dollar contract with the Patriots. With fame, fortune and opportunity, how does a talented young athlete become a murder suspect? Well, Hernandez has blamed his behavioral and mental health challenges on the loss of his father. Whether his father’s death was the reason for his hot temper or series of negative events in his life, one thing is clear and that is Hernandez needs help.

Hernandez was arrested for the murder of Odin Lloyd, who was also considered a friend. After the arrest, a series of unsolved murders came to the attention of authorities and suggested Hernandez may have even been involved with them. And while Hernandez sits in prison awaiting his trial, he released letters that are most disturbing saying,

“I’m on the block here lovin’ it. I got my own cell too... I’m out all day only lock in 4 hours a day… So we be ballin’. You know, my realest ‘G’ I ever effed with, I'm still effin with - Harry Potter!”

Ok, so, Hernandez appears to have “reframed” his arrest beautifully by learning how to “ball” in prison. It’s clear that he has adapted to his environment, but it still does not explain how a young emerging football star could throw his future away during the prime of his career. What went wrong?


A series of violent acts and events have followed Hernandez for many years. Some believed the Patriots took a chance by committing to a player with a tumultuous and violent history. And like Hernandez, there are many people that struggle with depression as a result of the loss of a parent, substance abuse and mental health challenges; and here are a few ways to help your loved one:

Symptoms of depression

·      Loss of interest in things: work, school, activities, sex, hobbies

·      Unusually sad, moody and irritable

·      Feelings of hopelessness or helplessness

·      Somatic symptoms: headaches, stomach aches, etc

·      Fatigued and increased or decreased sleep

·      Isolates from family and friends

·      Emotional eating; weight gain or loss

·      Increased substance use or abuse

What to do:

·      Be aware of the symptoms

·      Research treatment options and gather resources

·      Extend support to your loved one

·      Do not judge or become critical

·      Ask questions without condemnation

·      Hospitalize if loved one is suicidal

Depression may be triggered by a number of different causes and only a mental health professional can clinically diagnose the symptoms. If you or a love one are facing the challenges of depression, grief, or substance abuse please contact a counseling professional today.


Sincerely Be-You-Tiful,

Jada Jackson, M.S., M.A., LMHC, NCC

Licensed Mental Health Counselor

Talk Show Host of Emotional Mojo

Author of Be-You-Tiful: The Threefold Process to Becoming You

Blogger and Author of Jada Jackson: My Story, My Life

jadajackson.com


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