Goals are really important benchmarks for personal growth. We set long and short term goals for ourselves to get things done and challenge us to succeed and grow.
Last year I fulfilled one of my own life Goals.
I organised a seminar to raise awareness of the importance of mental health in fitness, and how we could use exercise and our fitness community to help stay mentally well.
The event 'Time 2 Talk' took place last year and raised money for the charity PAPYRUS.
Here's a little exert video. For more video content read further.
The idea of putting on a seminar relating to sport and mental health had it's origins in one of the most painful episodes of my life: the death of my daughter to suicide on her 18th birthday
This picture of us was taken on one of my show days.
As I worked through the early stages of my grief I busied myself with goals, and started to envision a bigger plan.
I wanted to help people like Ellie, and hoped I could help anyone that maybe struggling.
So I chose the charity PAPYRUS, who deal exclusively with the prevention of young suicide in the UK, and I also wanted to help my fellow fitness community by holding an event to raise awareness of looking after your mental health as well as your physical health.
Another catalyst was the recent suicide of a well known bodybuilder in my fitness community, it felt that there was a huge elephant in the room and I wanted to address my concerns for the mental health of my fellow fitness enthusiasts. Within the bodybuilding and fitness community I began to realise we were people who looked great on the outside, but who were struggling on the inside, especially during the lockdown and pandemic which further isolated members of our community from their safe space: the gym.
Pulling it all Together
I had been an invited speaker at other events, but nothing prepared me for the sheer volume of work engaged in putting on a seminar. It took me right out of my comfort zone and the best part of six months to drum up support, book speakers and herd a community to come together to talk about a very difficult subject.
I called my friends, I pulled in favours, I even cold called industry experts so I would get a wide range of speakers bringing their experience, beliefs and individual journey's.
(left -right) Lorraine Denman, Paul Knight, Eddie Abbew, Stacey Boyce, Tori Beaumont, Andy Webb, Chris Proctor, Ellie Hills.
Each speaker brought their own experience and expertise from the world of fitness and their support and knowledge was invaluable. We talked about our own personal journey's and belief's and how we used fitness to stay healthy physically and mentally.
Part 1: Stacey Boyce, Lorraine, Eddie Abbew
Part 2: Eddie Abbew, Tori Beaumont
Part 3: Andy Webb, Ellie Hills
I took a step back after the seminar to get my energy and focus back. Time was needed to process what we actually had achieved at such a difficult time for everyone, coping with a pandamic and then a fuel shortage that weekend, which added to the stress, but people still came together and we talked and shared.
I was exhausted after the event, as organising the whole event was a huge undertaking, considering I was still working and studying, but I always enjoy speaking with the intention of reaching and helping people.
If you would like to book me as a speaker click on the link and fill out my contact form.
The Charity Papyrus
Their Mission (Papyrus website 2022)
PAPYRUS exists to reduce the number of young people who take their own lives, by shattering the stigma surrounding suicide and equipping young people and their communities with the skills to recognise and respond to emotional distress. We believe that no young person should have to struggle alone with thoughts of suicide.
I had three great sponsors supporting my event. Crayford Weights and Fitness that supplied the venue and event management skills. Time 4 Nutrition helped push the event out and marketing, and Chrissie Nicholson-Wild from Miss C put together the fundraising web page and general admin.