So, I’ve decided to take a bit of a backwards move to what I had originally been planning to do. So that rather than have absolutely everything ironed out and then simply announce the creation of my brand-new media Campaign, I’ve decided to chat through the entire creation journey that has led to the Campaign’s website launch TODAY…

Facebook: Shake My Hand Campaign

Twitter: @ShakeMyHandUK

Instagram: @shakemyhandUK

1.     Developing & Building On The Idea From The Inspiration

For a number of years, I’ve been following a girl’s Twitter/X account because she often talked about her own experience of abuse and rape, but she kept her account anonymous throughout the court proceedings against her abuser/rapist. Finally, after the sentencing was concluded (he received a five-year-prison-sentence) Ellie Wilson waived her right for anonymity and made her identity public as she began her work as an advocate and started campaigning for various causes related to her experiences – including petitioning for her rapist’s Lawyer to receive consequences (which he eventually did) for his disgraceful and traumatic cross-examination of Ellie in Court.

It was this last bit which I found the most inspirational – especially in so far as the Campaign I’m creating because it inspired me to publish a tweet which linked to a post of the Good Morning Britain account where they had shared a snippet of their interview with her regarding the Lawyer’s comeuppance (you can view it here). In my ‘Quote Tweet’ I wrote ‘when people are asked “why didn’t you report it sooner?” – because this is what you can go through when you do!’

Through the success and popularity of my blog; I’ve started to take communications and marketing so much more seriously and have enrolled in numerous online courses (with my current one being a Diploma in Internet Marketing Strategies for Businesses on the Centre of Excellence – you can read about it here) as well as having voluntary roles in the industry so that I can better my knowledge and skills in the industry. In doing all of these things, I have recently (the last few months) started to really want to create some sort of media campaign but, until seeing this content with Ellie Wilson, I had felt kind of at a stand-still in terms of a proper idea, name, or even a real inspiration for it. I mean, I toyed with thoughts around mental health, but I feel like that would be pretty predicable of me – like, if I announced I was launching a project like this, people would assume it’d be centred around mental health. Similarly to my communications and marketing career – where I’d rather work in such a department of an organisation where mental health might only be occasionally relevant – I like the idea that this campaign isn’t overwhelmingly around mental health, but it will play into be mentioned in some places.

Now, the name for the campaign stems from an actual experience during the sexual abuse I experienced when I was 15. My abuser had tried to hurt me again in his office and I’d finally succeeded in fighting back and had run out. He chased me though and we began a huge screaming match as he followed me through the building he worked in, but we got to a corridor, and I had turned around and screamed “think about your wife and children!” Just as I said it, my abuser’s employer came charging out of his office in that same corridor and demanded to know why I thought I had the right so speak to my abuser in such a ‘rude and obnoxious’ way. And just like the saying about a straw breaking the camel’s back; I turned around and just blurted it all out; I told him what had been happening for the past six months! His reply? “You’re such a manipulative liar! That’s it! I’m sick of it! I want you out of this building; wait in reception while we ring your Mother to collect you!” I looked at my abuser and saw a tiny smirk cross his face before I stormed out of the corridor and headed to reception.

When my Mum arrived, I told her that they’d said I had to leave but didn’t tell her why, so she ended up demanding to speak with my abuser’s employer and I kind of drifted further back into the reception area and looked down the corridor which joined reception to the corridor we’d argued in and saw my abuser and his employer. Shaking hands. And so, it was in this memory that I named the campaign; Shake My Hand. I wanted it to not only be a dig at that horrible moment all those years ago, but also a kind of symbolism of support for anyone who agreed with the points and goals that the campaign would eventually have – because, despite having a name(!), the objectives and actual cause or mission of the campaign was still yet to be determined…

“My message to survivors everywhere is that there is life after abuse. What happened to you doesn’t define you. Your pain can be your power.”

Ellie Wilson,

2.     Creating An Email Address

Once I had the name of the campaign determined, I knew that I wanted to create social media accounts and a website for it, but I almost immediately realised that I’d need an email address to do some of these things. And because I didn’t want my own email address to end up being bombarded by notifications (once the accounts were more established and had an actual following, obviously!), I thought I’d create that first. In setting it up though, I also realised it was a good idea as a means for both the general public and followers being able to contact me specifically about the campaign and also for organisations to correspond about collaborating, endorsing the campaign, and requesting press releases etc. I thought it would look more professional and put-together too, at least more so than me giving my email address with my own name in it. And fortunately, it was incredibly easy to create it; so, if you want more information or have any questions related to Shake My Hand, please feel free to contact me at:

3.     Making A Logo on Canva

This was actually one of the bits I was most looking forward to in the whole creation process of the campaign; and if you know me or have read, I’m NOT Disordered for a little while, you’ll likely not be surprised by that! I mean, I feel like at this point, it’s just common knowledge that I’ve been obsessed with Canva ever since being taught of its existence in my Digital Marketing Internship in 2019. I will freely admit that if I can use it in a blog post then I will – even if it’s just been to create the title graphic (which I do in almost every post) or ones for subtitles throughout the post! I even worked alongside them on a ton of graphics and activity pages for my first book; Everything Disordered (which you can buy here).

So, in being faced with creating a logo for the campaign, I instinctively turned to Canva. I did, however, also toy with the idea of taking a background of some sort of circular frame or something from Pinterest, but I felt that copyright guidelines are even more important in creating something like this… So, the graphic of the hand was actually found just in a search in the ‘Elements’ function on Canva, but then I edited the colours. I chose the blues and pink because I liked their contrast and the stereotypical idea that these two colours might help people to feel and recognise that the campaign is actually aimed at both men and women. And then I found the two fonts (one for ‘Shake’ and ‘Hand’ and the other for ‘My’) amongst their ‘Text Combinations’ feature. The positioning and sizing of everything was probably what took the longest time to finally ‘get right’ in the logo. I liked that the ‘Hand’ was almost rested on the actual hand graphic and then I wanted the ‘Shake’ and ‘My’ to have some sort of even spacing too, so I juggled with a lot of rotations and the sizing of the fonts too.

The part of creating the logo which I’m so proud of, is actually more behind-the-scenes. From working in the communications and marketing department of a local Hospice Charity, I really learnt about the importance of continuity in branding. So, once the logo was designed, I used the brand-new Fringe notebook I bought (pictured in this Instagram post) I’ve assigned to anything and everything regarding the campaign, to record each of the three colour shades (if you hover on a colour of your font or one you’ve used in a graphic, a reference code will appear – it usually starts with a hashtag and then a combination of six letters and numbers). I also recorded the titles of the two fonts and their sizing as well as the colour shades for them too. Thinking to do this, left me feeling fairly confident in creating further graphics of any kind and to be honest, I felt quite professional for thinking to do this! It gave me the acknowledgement that I’ve learnt a lot.

4.     Setting Up Social Media, Profile Photos, The Facebook Cover, & Twitter Header

This part felt like the perfect and most sensible follow-up to creating the logo because I knew I would need to use it in designing these elements for the social media accounts…

The social media accounts were obviously quite simple to create, and this was especially true not just because I have my own accounts and so I’ve done it before; but also, because I have previously created other accounts for organisations and I’ve been assigned editorial privileges for organisation’s accounts, so I already knew how that side of things worked. It also ended up being a good next step because – for the Twitter account – I needed the Campaign’s email address to set it up, for the Instagram account it was joined to my own and the Facebook account was set up as a ‘Page’ through my own profile too.

Another relief about setting up the social media profiles, was that I managed to get the same handles on Instagram and Twitter (@ShakeMyHandUK) and I really love that continuity and also that it makes sharing the social media on any sort of publicity materials that much easier! Another good part of the Instagram and Twitter was that the size of the logo that I’d designed in Canva had actually been the perfect ratio for the profile photos of those two platforms. Facebook, however, required me searching for a Facebook Profile Photo template on Canva and resizing the logo to fit accordingly within that circular frame.

Facebook continued to be the bane of my life though! The bane of this Campaign, anyway, at least! So, alongside the profile photos, I also had to create the ‘Header’ for Twitter and the ‘Cover’ for Facebook – for anyone who doesn’t know, these graphics are the name for those images that stretch across the top of a person’s profile on the two platforms. With their profile photo usually over the top of part of it. The Header template was easy to find on Canva and even easier to design! The Cover, however, … Well, I designed it on the laptop within the Canva template and it looked good, but then I’d apply it to the profile on my iPhone and it would crop out the left side of the design where the email address, handle on social media, and website address was – so it was kind of a necessary part to the design! And, so, no matter how far along towards the right I moved all that text, it continued to crop it out. So, in a desperate bid to make it work, I cut that part of the text out completely; and then I found it cropped out the right side! It was so so so frustrating!

I had a Cleaner here and I was completely losing my temper with my laptop and phone and then, eventually, it clicked! I remembered that once, in designing a website for an organisation, I had to change the ‘view as…’ function to see what the site looked like on a phone compared to a laptop. And so I wondered if that’s the same with social media accounts and when I discovered I was right, I had to make the decision as to whether to have the Header be the right size on a laptop or on my iPhone. Thinking on it – and then asking the Cleaner if she agreed – I came to the conclusion that people tend to look at Facebook on their phone more than a laptop, so I researched the size of a Facebook Header in an iPhone and typed that into the ‘custom size’ feature on Canva to design it that way. Afterwards, I questioned whether my frustration and the feeling that I’d tried so hard was dramatic; until I saw in my laptop’s Recycle Bin that I had over 14 Headers I’d designed which hadn’t worked! Fourteen attempts! Surely that, was a huge illustration of dedication to this Campaign? To this cause?

5.     Choosing & Purchasing the URL

Having decided – after around one year, I think – to purchase my blog’s URL and forward its original one which encompassed ‘.blogpost’ in it (making it really lengthy and difficult to mention on marketing materials e.g. business cards) to redirect to Seeing the difference to the number of readers and the percentage of the increase of them from the lengthy URL to the shortened one, meant that in creating this Campaign, I knew straight away that I would want a personalised URL, so I visited GoDaddy – the service used for my blog’s link. Having already used it, meant that I knew how easy it is and how reliable and helpful their Support Team can be.

I honestly couldn’t really believe my luck when I discovered that the URL I had really wanted and liked the sound of – – was available! I’d toyed with the idea of missing the ‘campaign’ out, but not only was that taken; I also didn’t like that I felt it made it sound more like some sort of inappropriate website! And I also didn’t like that some other options made it sound like a company; I wanted to make it clear that I define it – and that I want others to do so as well – as a Campaign. I also had the huge decision to make as to whether I wanted ‘.com’ or ‘’ That was tough because whilst I want it recognised that this is a UK Campaign – obviously when you consider the social media handles, I also wanted the simplicity of ‘.com’ and so, I went for that in the end.

Then came the pricing. I will admit to some confusion on this part, but I quickly figured out where I’d gone wrong and luckily, GoDaddy provide Klarna as a payment option and I selected the ‘pay in 30 days’ option. I don’t want that to sound as though it was because the pricing of the URL’s and other services on GoDaddy are through the roof – they’re actually exceptionally cheap(!) – it was just for personal reasons. And in making the payment, I also decided to go for the one-year subscription (longer subscriptions can actually be better value for money, though!) because I felt that this would be a decent amount of time to really see whether Shake My Hand was actually going to really become something. Whether it was really going to ‘take off.’

6.     Deciding Between Blogger & WordPress & Then Choosing A Pipdig Template

Another instance of the following job making a lot of sense, was – after buying the URL – then deciding which platform to use to host the website. Now, I actually went straight for WordPress because through experience with voluntary roles, I’ve actually seen that WordPress is the best platform for business websites and that Blogger is – probably very obviously – better placed for personal sites and blogs. However, the reason I chose Blogger over WordPress for I’m NOT Disordered came to the forefront again – WordPress felt a lot more complicated and intense in setting up and taking care of and downloading, or subscribing and purchasing, the necessary ‘plug-ins’ and ‘widgets.’

Another factor which helped lead me to Blogger, was that I knew immediately I would want to choose a theme from Pipdig – the website a lot of popular Bloggers use as their design template – because I used it myself this past year for, I’m NOT Disordered, and I found it so incredibly easy to use with very well explained download and installing instructions, as well as including brilliant customer service and Support Teams.

Despite discovering that the templates for WordPress are pricier (by £10 - £20 depending upon your selection) than those exclusively for Blogger (priced at £39 - £49) I still continued to search for a template I liked. Finally, when I had chosen one by appearance, I actually read the information about it – perhaps I should have done that in my decision-making process! – and discovered it wouldn’t apply to a typical website. In all honesty, I struggled to thoroughly understand it, but it appeared that you’d have to use another website to take over your WordPress site and account, and then download and apply the template via that way…

So, I quickly turned my attention to making Blogger work for Shake My Hand! It didn’t take long for me to realise that it would be incredibly easy and quick to create it through my Gmail account (which is the operating system for Blogger), however I tried to think ahead. I realised that if the Campaign really did succeed, it would be incredibly challenging – well, I didn’t know if it would even be possible – to transfer it from my account to one set up for the Campaign because if I were to have Volunteers and someone to take over the running of the site, I wouldn’t want them to have my login because that would grant them access to I’m NOT Disordered too! So, I created a Gmail account for the Campaign and set up the site – or blog – through that and then just logged into GoDaddy to set up the forwarding for the .com address to send through to the .blogspot one you’re given for free when you create a Blogger account (as I talked about with I’m NOT Disordered). To be honest, the whole process of the forwarding seemed much easier than when I’d had to do it for my own blog! 

Then, I went back to Pipdig and started looking through the Blogger templates and I quite enjoyed that almost none of them were perfect for the Campaign because it meant I got to use my imagination and creativity a lot! I ended up using a page in the special Fringe Studio Notebook (I swear they have the best paper in their Journals and Notebooks!) which I had dedicated to the Campaign (it’s actually pictured in a post on each of the Campaign’s social media!) to list my five favourite templates and some pros and cons for each. I think I’m someone who can make a decision better when I have the information in front of me. When I feel like I’ve processed things properly. So, despite going through all five and writing about five points for each, I ended up choosing the one I’d started with! Now, I’m not going to disclose the name of the template, but I will tell you about the elements on it that I’d noted down (maybe you’ll be able to guess which one from those)…

ü  It allows for the ‘parent page’ in the menu.

ü  I could make the ‘trending’ feature into posts about different services of the Campaign.

ü  I could replace the image of the ‘Blogger’ with the logo.

ü  I liked that it included the logos for social media on the top and side of the template.

ü  I wondered if I could change the Instagram feed feature to the Campaign’s Twitter…

After choosing the template, I then had to purchase it, apply it to the Blogger site, and make all the edits I wanted in order to launch it today! Having taken so long and worked so hard at it, I really hope you like it: – please feel free to leave comments and feedback on the Campaign’s social media!

7.     Finally Determining A Goal For The Campaign Strategy!

So, through my education, blogging, and career experience in the communications and marketing industry, I knew that in really creating this Campaign to a point where I could contact organisations and professionals to begin securing endorsements, collaborations, and advertising, I would need to create a document titled a ‘Campaign Strategy.’ Despite knowing this, I did have to research exactly which elements to feature in the Strategy; I mean, I thought of S.M.A.R.T Goals and having a Mission, but there were other bits and pieces that I hadn’t considered e.g. writing about the Campaign’s Target Audience and including a conducted S.W.O.T Analysis of the Campaign too. The first part of the Strategy, however – after the inspiration and ‘The Story’ behind the Campaign – the part where you’re expected to write about the goal or the aim or the mission behind the Campaign, left me stuck already. On the fifth page (page one was the cover, two was the Welcome Message – which will be featured on the website! Then, three was the Contents, and the fourth was The Story)!

I mean, I knew it was very obviously going to be something to do with rape and sexual abuse because of the meaning behind the title and the inspiration for that which I talked about at the beginning of this post. And it was a few days after starting the Strategy that I was staring at the laptop screen looking at the page titled ‘The Goal’ and wracking my brains trying to think of what to write when it seemed to just suddenly ‘come to me.’ And almost naturally and automatically I just began typing; ‘to increase the number of rape and sexual abuse Survivors reporting their experiences to the Police.’ I absolutely love that it came to me like that… Like, it had been the idea or the goal all along and I just hadn’t seen it. But, when I did see it, there was no consideration. No hesitation. I just instinctively knew that was the right way to go. It’s actually a notion that I’ve experienced on so many occasions throughout my eleven years of blogging and it’s honestly never led me wrong. So, I felt confident both relying on and trusting in it.

With the goal finally decided upon, I changed the bios on the Campaign’s social media because they had previous read that more information was ‘coming soon,’ and I was eager to provide more details because I thought doing so, might encourage more people to follow the accounts. I just thought it was like when I collaborate with organisations – I need to know exactly what I’m putting my name – and my blog’s name – to. It’s good to ensure that you know as much as possible when you publicly support a Campaign… or any sort of account really(!) because you may find yourself faced with someone questioning your support and/or endorsement of the cause or the person. And if you can give evidence as to why you agree with what the account represents, then you’ll really be better off in feeling confident and comfortable in facing any controversy or disagreements.

Despite the Campaign’s goal coming so naturally, I still recognised the importance of it – especially for all the reasons I just mentioned – and so I knew that getting the wording of it right was really essential to the impact of it. I mean, you could say ‘Doughnuts are on sale today’ or ‘lovely, sweet doughnuts reduced for one day only’… It’s pretty much the same message, but the different wording can have a huge influence on whether you actually find the offer appealing or intriguing. Also – side note – can you tell I just bought some Doughnuts yesterday and that they’re sat right beside me at the minute?!

I also had the recognition that the wording was important in terms of the Campaign’s communications and marketing. For practical terms, it needed to be quite short just so that I could write the entire goal on the social media bio and some platforms limit the characters or words you can use in that. But, in trying to keep it short, I still needed to make sure that it got the goal across in an empathetic and powerful way that would set an example of the type of Campaign I want to create. The type that I’m working so hard for it to be. The reputation I want it to have, and the respect that I want it to be really worthy of receiving. And so, yes, I played around with the wording a little bit; especially the phrasing of wanting to increase the reports and that I really wanted to include the word ‘Survivors’ in it because they/that quality, will play such a huge role in the entire Campaign. Whilst it’s important that I’m happy with the eventual decision on the phrasing of it, I really hope that others appreciate it too.

8.     Beginning Research for The Strategy

The thought that I’d need to do this was actually something that has been on my mind since before I created and began any work on Shake My Hand. This was because over the many years of having a mental illness, I’ve come to really recognise the importance of being prepared for worst-case-scenarios in anything and everything I turn my attention to. The largest reason for this is because the most common cause of my self-harm or any sort of further deterioration in my mental health, has usually been the feeling of being caught off-guard. And I think this stems back to the sexual abuse I experienced when I was younger because it was at the hands of someone who should have been doing the exact opposite. My abuser/rapist was in a position of trust and of power. A position where the expectations of him were that he should be doing everything to help, support me, and to keep me safe.

There was this one occasion when my abuser actually had a meeting with other people in my life and with it being held in his Office – where many of the abusive instances happened – I ended up running out of it crying. Apparently, my abuser began to get emotional and one of the people in attendance spoke to me after and it turned out that they had viewed and interpreted his emotions as being empathetic to my upset. They thought he was so invested in the quality of my life that to see me upset and distressed was actually saddening for him too. It was so frustrating to hear their thoughts and opinions on him and all I wanted to do was scream “you’re so wrong!” but, for so many reasons, I couldn’t tell anyone then. And this meant that I couldn’t really blame that person for misinterpreting the situation because they knew no better. So, when the abuse was revealed, that person told me they’d been thinking about that instance and wondered if he had gotten upset purely because he was worried. Worried that I was going to tell the person who ran out after me what he had been doing.

 So, with that horrific experiences of someone not meeting expectations and not doing all that he should have been surely, it’s no wonder why unexpected events or people turning out to not be who I thought they were, can be really de-stabilising for me…? And this fact, was what really encouraged me to establish my understanding and appreciation for ‘triggers.’ In all honesty, whilst I completely recognised that there were things in my life which had the power and the influence to send me ‘backwards,’ I don’t think I had any real knowledge on the subject of triggers and how important they are in the mental health world until I was sectioned and admitted to a specialist psychiatric hospital in 2012.

I definitely didn’t realise that it was something which professionals actually also really recognised as being threatening – to the point where all the staff in the specialist hospital were really aware and conscious of doing everything in their power to help someone with their triggers. And not necessarily by helping them to avoid their triggers; but actually, to help them to learn how to better cope should they come up. Because no matter what your triggers and no matter how many you have(!), you really can’t – and shouldn’t have to – live a life that is controlled by them. You can’t avoid certain places or people or topics of conversation. It’s often, just not realistic. So, developing coping techniques and methods of managing things safely when you’re feeling triggered can be so much more reasonable, useful, and practical.

Now, I’m very much one of those people who believes that you know your own body better than anyone – no matter what their qualifications, job title, or career experience! And so, in deciding to do this Campaign, I had to check whether I felt up to doing it. Whether I felt comfortable and confident in the belief and conviction that I would be able to safely navigate any triggering moments that could very realistically crop up throughout the entire process of this Campaign. And one of these potential triggers which I had foreseen might be something that was fairly unavoidable, was doing research to evidence the necessity, relevance, and rationale behind the Campaign. I knew I was going to end up reading about the number of people who have experienced rape and/or sexual abuse and the number of those who don’t report their experiences to the Police. I mean it’s what the entire Campaign is built upon! So, I needed to know this – it wasn’t just about the evidence for prospective collaboration partners and endorsements from other organisations or people; it was also about me feeling confident in my goal. It was about feeling certain that I’m doing the right thing and that it’s completely worth all of the time and energy I’m dedicating to it.

So, I’ve obviously coped in doing my research; but if you think you’ll struggle to read the statistics, then please feel free to scroll further down because I’m about to include a graphic with the data I found the saddest, but also most motivational…

9.     Starting To Look Up & Follow Accounts on Social Media

Looking back at this post, I know I talked earlier about creating the social media accounts for the Campaign and it probably would have made sense if I had talked about following other accounts, but I actually – strangely – didn’t do that until this point in the creation journey!

So, early on in this creation of the Campaign, in my Fringe Studio notebook, I had noted down a short list of the largest organisations that I thought would be quite important and influential to Shake My Hand actually succeeding and really making a mark in the world and on the lives of people. The list was literally just all of the organisations who I thought were probably the most obvious and well-known to be relevant to the Campaign’s goal and cause e.g. my local Police force, Victim Support, The Survivor’s Trust, and Rape Crisis England and Wales, to name but a few! However, on creating this little list, I had just researched their most relevant email address to send the pitch, brief, save-the-date, and the Strategy to. And so, it was only when I was posting a reel about the Volunteer vacancies available (I’ll be talking about them next) on the Campaign’s social media accounts in the hope of attracting applications; that I realised if I didn’t follow other accounts to encourage them to follow the Campaign back, where was I going to get the publicity and attention from? Who was the post even going to be seen by?!

After following all of the social media accounts of the organisations in my list, I began looking through the ‘Discover People’ feature on Instagram… I’ve chosen to concentrate the Campaign’s social media efforts on their Instagram account (@shakemyhandUK) because it seems to be one of the most popular platforms at the minute; and particularly useful for big projects, small organisations, businesses or charities, and Campaigns like this one! I think it’s the best for interacting with followers and is the one that it allows you to be the most creative with its many different features ranging from creating an entire Reel with an audio back-track and adding calendar reminders and fundraising functions to your posts! So, the next thing I knew I had followed 58 accounts and they had already begun to follow the Campaign back and in doing this, I have not only been inspired by the realisation that so many people want to make changes in this area too. But I was also inspired to look for smaller organisations and little, more local charities to approach with the Campaign details too.

10.  Recruiting Volunteers

 Now this? This was a part I definitely hadn’t considered – not until the very minute I considered it, anyway! You know when something just doesn’t occur to you until a particular moment and what that happens, you’re like “how did this only just occur to me?” It was just like that. And how or why did the idea of recruiting Volunteers to help with the Campaign come into my head? It came into my head because I was at a point where I was just then recognising the time and effort, I would like to put into the social media content. In following the other accounts – which I just talked about – I got some inspiration and ideas regarding the content on the Campaign’s social media. One of these ideas was through seeing a few other organisations and support groups centred around similar causes (helping rape and sexual abuse survivors in various ways) were publishing posts that always contained their particular brand aesthetic. Whether that be a particular set of colours or it being very simple, clean, black and white illustrations or massively detailed and colourful ones.

Now, usually, I’m on of those people where I’m determined to do it all myself! I want to take on everything that comes my way – and I think that actually, a large part of why I have that quality is because of my suicide attempts and that I was on life support twice. I think it really showed me that everything can just be over in a heartbeat; and so, I think that in feeling like I’m in recovery (despite large difficulties recently), I have developed a massive passion and determination for taking every opportunity that comes my way. In order to make the most of my life before it is over. And that isn’t necessarily about thinking ‘you could get run over by a bus tomorrow!’ It’s actually about the suicide attempts and recognising that I could just find myself feeling suicidal again and, once again, acting on those thoughts and feelings.

The notion that I’ve really been in recovery for a number of years now though, has meant that I’ve had multiple opportunities to learn when to say that enough is enough. How to judge when I’ve taken on too much and it’s overwhelming to the point of actually having a negative impact on my mental health – despite genuinely committing to everything with good intentions and the belief that they’ll be really positive and good for my mental health and, actually, my recovery on a whole! But, over the years – and now having multiple experiences of my mental health dipping and me really struggling when my workload is full to the brim – I’ve eventually learnt when I need to start saying ‘no’ to opportunities. It’s kind of ironic how it works because I’ve said ‘yes’ to things to make the most of life, but then – when I’ve taken on too much – I’ve found that I end up not enjoying everything.

So, I’ve discovered the number of tasks and commitments that I can take on to the point where I will still feel balanced, stable, safe, and not overwhelmed. Through these experiences, I’ve also learnt the length of deadlines I can work to e.g. a blog post (especially a lengthy one) now typically takes at least one week to put together. And I have honestly found that having these limits has had a really positive impact on my mental health and on the level of dedication I can commit to projects as well as the quality of the work I’ll produce when I’m not stressed and panicking that I head so many deadlines to meet! I think this was another reason why it was so difficult was because I do usually enjoy everything I do, and that was a huge motivation for continuing to take on work because I believed it could end up being helpful and beneficial to my mood. However, I did finally find my own definition of a healthy work balance; but then I also had to put a lot of work into actually feeling confident enough and able to say ‘no’ to the people who I really don’t want to disappoint, disrespect, or risk tarnishing my relationship with them in any way.

All of this has meant that upon recognising the level of time and energy that the Campaign’s social media might require, I was able to accept that this meant I might need to recruit a Volunteer to help with that. But then, in realising this, I also went on to wonder whether there would be multiple areas of the Campaign where someone with specific experience in those areas would be really beneficial to helping me to make this Campaign into all that I want it to be. So, I began researching different means of advertising Voluntary roles. The website I’ve personally used to apply for Voluntary roles; Reach Volunteering, actually don’t provide advertising opportunities unless you match a specific criterion and one of those elements is that your organisation or project or whatever, has to be operational and already have Volunteers or Staff committed to it. This, made little sense to me; because how can you really get something up and off the ground without that help? How can something be ‘operational’ and already have Volunteers, if you can’t be ‘operational’ without Volunteers?

Rather than feel hopeless and disheartened though, I turned to further research into other websites offering similar services. Multiple sites charged to create adverts on them, but I eventually came across Doit… Which, I was a bit annoyed I hadn’t thought of sooner because it’s actually also one I’ve used a few times to have gained my own Voluntary opportunities! With that in mind though – that I’ve only accessed the site from that sort of perspective, meant I had no experience in being the person putting out the adverts, so that led to further research (such a good job I enjoy doing that – and something where, if someone were to ask me for tips on creating a Campaign, I would actually advise that they be willing to take on a lot of research assignments!).

My research also went on to include the usual and typical job descriptions for the roles I wanted to advertise and I ended up using various websites to gather the information and advice on what to write in each of the adverts; but I did find Indeed really helpful because it actually also provided full templates (you can see what I’m talking about here). Initially, it took me a good twenty minutes to put together each role, but by the fourth or fifth (I think there were eleven in the end!) I found myself getting quicker and quicker and, in the end, it was about five or ten minutes for each vacancy!

So – with the launch of the Campaign website – you can actually now check out the Campaign vacancies and apply on there, or, there’s also links on each to their advertisements to the Doit website if you have an account on there and would prefer to apply that way.

A Few Final Bits:

Other, most recent bits to the Campaign that I’ve begun and done but didn’t really have the space to write about each of them are that I’ve begun sending emails to the organisations I’d listed with a pitch on how I’d like them to get involved. I’ve also researched all the Policies and Procedures I might need to create and will begin creating them soon. Finally, in the social media reel on the Campaign’s social media channels (you can watch it on Instagram here, Twitter here, and on the Facebook Page here) I needed some little graphics, so I searched for them on Canva in the ‘Elements’ function when you’re on a design, and then I changed their colours to the brand colours (which I took from the logo that I talked about towards the beginning of the post). 

I’ve also taken part in a Q&A about the Campaign for one of my best-friends blog; and that’s being published over on: on June 26th 2024!

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