Research life / Urban wildlife

Chasing the Dog

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.

Learn more about Chase the Dog and the fantastic work of Beyond Blue.

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