Chase the Dog. I’ll admit, it’s a really weird thing to have written in your calendar.
But that’s what I’ll be doing this weekend. A 6-7 hour bike ride to raise money and awareness for Beyond Blue.
This cause couldn’t be more close to my heart. Mental health issues are a thread woven through both my personal and professional life. But I’ll focus on the professional today.
Anxiety and depression are ridiculously prevalent in academia. I have dealt with it myself. I’ve seen it force co-workers into medical and stress leave, or to leave the field entirely. And last year a colleague committed suicide.
Academia can be a pretty stress-laden, anxiety-inducing world. So the way we deal with mental health issues is particularly important. My approach in the past has been what I considered to be an ingenious mix of silence, compartmentalising and working from home (also caffeine and wine). The time has come for me to re-evaluate that strategy, and, after a recent injection of bravery, I’ll have more to say on this issue in future posts.
But for now, my first baby step is doing this event – Chase the Dog. For me, it’s about starting a conversation and making it easier for others to do the same.
You can donate to Beyond Blue through my fundraising page here.