The mental health benefits of online learning mean self-development is never selfish…
So, it’s Mental Health Awareness Week and it’s fair to say that over the past year or so we’ve never been more aware of our mental health.
The pandemic has affected all of us differently – the challenges for those single and living alone have been different from those who’ve been cooped up with kids – and then there are the heroes who’ve been working tirelessly on the frontline, and of course those struggling with grief and isolation after losing loved ones.
Many of us have been guilty of indulging in a bit of pandemic one-upmanship in an attempt to decide who’s had it worse, but we’d just like to confirm in case anyone was in any doubt: IT HAS BEEN AN ABSOLUTE SACK OF SHIT FOR EVERYONE. Apart from maybe the guy who invented Zoom.
But! There have been a few positive things to come out of the last 29 zillion months of relentless shite too. And one of them is that many people – even if it was initially out of sheer panic and desperation – have found clever ways to pivot their businesses online. The boom in online learning was happening already, but Covid has really put a rocket up its bum and we believe (and bloody hope!) it’s here to stay.
While many people have made all the extra time at home less tedious by using online learning to pick up new practical skills, from coding to baking, there are plenty of courses out there with a bit more of an internal, mind, body and soul type focus so, in honour of Mental Health Awareness Week, we thought we’d round up a few of the best ones you can currently find on Discoco.
If you’re in need of a creative outlet…
There are lots of writing courses out there, but we wanted to feature Sasa Jankovic’s Write It Out on Discoco because it has an extra layer: she runs journalling workshops with an emphasis on boosting mental health through creativity, and she has great testimonials from people who’ve found them a lifeline during lockdown and beyond.
If you’ve got the working from home blues…
Even if you were a home-worker before this pandemic business, the circumstances have been a bit different this time (and not just because there’s been much less hanging out in coffee shops looking like you’re writing an incredible screenplay when you are, in fact, updating the Ocado order). If you’re in it for the long haul and struggling with isolation or a lack of motivation, Jo Carnegie is here to help.
If it’s actually the kids you’re worried about…
The last year has been rough on small people too (by which we mean children, not Oompa Loompas. We’re sure they’re just fine). But we have two great experts with courses which might help: Dr Andrea Shortland’s Taming Your Lion: Managing Big Emotions is designed for 7-12 year olds suffering from anger and anxiety while Clara May Warden’s Fire Soup Confidence Introductory Course is perfect for 8-13 year olds who are suffering in the self-esteem department. We strongly believe that getting the kids in charge of their mental health now will set them up brilliantly for the future. They might think they would rather have a new Minecraft thingymajig now, but they’ll thank you one day.
If it just feels like it might be time to focus on yourself (spoiler alert: IT IS!)…
Here at Discoco, we fully embrace being selfish, rather than the trivial issue of making yourself happy getting bumped waaaaay down the to-do list as it so often does, which is why we’ve got a whole bunch of courses that could give your self-esteem and wellbeing a boost from various angles, from the practical to the more spiritual.
Lucy Baker’s How To Be Confident will perk you up, particularly if you’re feeling crap about work (and it’s an audio course, so perfect for those government-sanctioned walks that are now strangely ingrained into our routines).
Kerry Hales’s DeKlutter Your Life course is ideal if both your head and your home need a bit of a clear-out. And after spending way too much time festering inside both of them lately, they sure do.
Korina Tsipoura’s The Rebellion of Self Care is all about embracing how your mind and body work together.
The clue’s in the name with Siobhan Goffee’s Joy As An Act of Resistance: it’s designed to help you get back in touch with what makes you happy.
Of course, it goes without saying (she says before typing it anyway) that anyone experiencing mental health issues should seek professional help and advice, but we also think that dabbling with online learning could be complimentary. Just the act of choosing to embrace something new can feel positive – heck, sometimes just reading about new things feels positive – and finding experts who you feel a connection with, even if it is through a screen, can feel really transformative.
Check out our Feel It category for more courses to make you feel good – with lots more to come over the next few weeks!