Hello and welcome to recommendation number seven of Blogmas 2020 with I’m NOT Disordered!
Today, I’ll be talking about the importance of education and recommending some of my favourite online courses that you could be taking… with a little help from the Centre of Excellence!
A lot of bad things happened to me at High School, and sadly, it really shaped – in a negative, debilitating way – my thoughts around education and being in a classroom environment. The experiences left me uncertain about being in School, but I’d only ever been taught that after your GCSE’s, you do your A Levels, and then go to University, and then get a job! Teachers didn’t explain that you could do Apprenticeships, or even that you could do your A Levels at a College and didn’t have to stay at High School.
So, it meant that I had no idea how many options I had when staying at the horrible School became no longer appropriate! And instead of looking into what was available, I transferred to another High School and joined their Sixth Form to do my A Levels. I was determined that what had happened to me wouldn’t stop me building a future, but the conviction that Sixth Form was the only way forward meant that I didn’t even give myself time to consider whether I would cope being in a classroom again, or being surrounded by people who had the potential to abuse their position of power.
At the end of my A Levels, the memories of the abuse I’d experienced when I’d been at High School became overpowering and I began experiencing auditory hallucinations in the form of a voice who regularly told me that I deserved to die. After ten days of hearing him, I eventually listened and took an overdose. From the suicide attempt, I was sectioned under the 1983 Mental Health Act and admitted to a psychiatric hospital for a few weeks. Unfortunately, those few weeks were when I should have been sitting my final exams to determine whether I could go to University because I’d had conditional offers to study Law at Newcastle and Northumbria University!
It’d been my dream for the last few years to be a Lawyer so that I could help others to achieve justice for whatever had been done to them because I still hadn’t reported the abuse and therefore justice for me, wasn’t even a possibility. With the teaching around education pathways being so limited, I didn’t realize there were so many alternative ways to apply to University and that failing my A Levels didn’t have to mean the end of my dream. So, I began searching for an alternative dream and spent the following four years full of uncertainty and with no real passion for any career or industry.
I attempted going into Childcare, becoming a Psychologist, working in Fashion and retail… but my mental illness was so unstable that realistically, I just couldn’t commit to any courses or training programmes. I wasn’t settled enough to be able to guarantee that I could be in a certain place, at a certain time, on a certain day!
When my suicide attempt in 2012 landed me on life support in intensive care, I think it’s pretty obvious to say I’d lost all hope and excitement for any kind of future. I couldn’t imagine me going back to education, working fulltime, or even growing old. I’d developed the belief that I would die young and I wanted to be in control of when that was and how it happened.
When I was woken from the coma, I was transferred to a specialist psychiatric hospital over 100 miles away from home and after being there for over six months, I kind of randomly decided to start blogging and created I’m NOT Disordered. The main catalyst to its creation was making the agreement with my Key Nurse to start writing about the abuse. That agreement felt like a huge step forward in my mental health recovery and it made me motivated to really document my progress for myself and for my friends and family. I hoped that in writing about my experiences it would encourage others to do the same and that it could help my loved ones to really understand what I was I going through all those miles away from them.
Blogging started as something I would do in the evenings after therapy groups when we were allowed our laptops in our hospital rooms; I didn’t ever imagine that it would become what it has! That it’d begin to feel like a career, that blogging in general would become an entire industry, and that it would afford me so many incredible opportunities through collaborations and partnerships.
I’ve come to believe that I’m NOT Disordered has been my destiny and the reason I’m here – I was meant to go through all that I have so that I could do all these things that my experiences have made me perfect for! In finding my passion with blogging, social media, comms and all things PR, I’ve been able to discover more appropriate, educational courses that I’ve found I enjoy so much more than the three A Level subjects I’d been studying for the Law degree (Philosophy, Law, and History).
A lot of the courses I found myself more interested in came from the wonderful Centre of Excellence, so here’s some of my favourites…
Forensic Psychology Course
Helpful: for someone interested in the connection between crime and mental health
Favourite Module: Module Four: Personal Attributes to Offenders
Fundraising Diploma Course
Helpful: for charity volunteers who are interested in improving their knowledge of this field
Favourite Module: Module Four: Direct Marketing Fundraising
Eating Psychology Coach Diploma Course
Helpful: for someone passionate about helping someone struggling with their eating
Favourite Module: Module Nine: Complex Clients
Feline Behaviour and Psychology Diploma Course
Helpful: for cat owners eager to learn more about their bestfriend
Favourite Module: Module Nine: Stress and Cats
Mobile Photography Diploma Course
Helpful: for budding photographers
Favourite Module: Module Four: Editing and Sharing
Social Media Marketing Diploma Course
Helpful: for taking social media more seriously
Favourite Module: Module Six: Twitter
Pet Bereavement Counsellor Diploma Course
Helpful: for someone who has lost a best-friend or wants to help others through it
Favourite Module: Module Seven: Grief Disorders
Creative Writing Diploma Course
Helpful: for embracing your love of writing
Favourite Module: Module Five: Write What You Know
Journal Therapy Diploma Course
Helpful: for turning your creativity into something more officially therapeutic
Favourite Module: Module Five: Writing To Heal
To see the rest of the courses at Centre of Excellence: https://www.centreofexcellence.com/
To like their page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/centreofexcellenceonline/
To follow their Twitter: https://twitter.com/Online_Courses
To watch their YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8xnaoaZ3IaHtAR4cMemvsA
And to look at their Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/centre_of_excellence/