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No Such Thing as Normal: From the author of Glorious Rock Bottom

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Lots of unnecessary stuff about the funding and inadequate nature of mental health services in the NHS, awe got it that they are under funded the first time no need to repeat. The book discusses all different kinds of topics surrounding the demons inside people’s heads, yet makes it relatable. so nothing new for me in it, but was SO good to reaffirm to me that THERE'S NO SUCH THING AS NORMAL! Come down the travelators, exit Sainsbury's, turn right and follow the pedestrianised walkway to Crown Walk and turn right - and Coles will be right in front of you.

In school, we learned about the bell-shaped curve and how most of us fell under the middle of the bell. Perhaps it's the shyness and introversion, but I'm not comfortable sharing a lot of personal details of my mental health with total strangers. It was more autobiographical than I expected, as Gordon is very much conveying her personal experience and lessons learned about mental wellness. Bryony Gordon says: "It would be disingenuous of me to say that I no longer care what other people think of me.I implore *ANYBODY* who is;- struggling with their mental health- wants to learn more about mental health in general- wants to know how to help somebody who may be struggling with their mental health- is curious about how to look after their own mental health. And the last chapter is one I plan to listen to again regularly, it is an excellent reminder of all those great advice nuggets! A definite recommendation to anyone who wants to be reassured by someone whose gone through the fight themselves. The last self-help book I read on mental health, The Anxiety Sisters' Survival Guide: Manage Worry, Panic, and Fear and Become Hopeful, Connected, and (Anxiously) Happy, did not work for me as it seemed to be based in a pre-pandemic reality.

And although normality can encompass a broad range of experiences, doesn't denying its existence make mental illness even more isolating? Journalist Bryony Gordon has inspired millions with her honesty and frankness about her mental health.From the isolation of lockdown and the COVID-19 pandemic, to the pain of recognising and ending toxic relationships, and also the comfort and sense of wellbeing that comes from supporting others, understand which connections are worth nurturing and which you can let go.

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