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sidekick stories

sidekick stories

By sidekick community
The sidekick stories podcast is a platform for people to share their stories to reduce the stigma around mental ill-health and encourage more people to speak out. The show features raw, honest conversations with guests about their mental health journey.

We are a charity creating tools, organising information and encouraging positive conversations about mental health. Download our free sidekick app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.

sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.
sidekick.org.uk/
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Stephanie Harrison on happiness
In this episode we speak to Stephanie Harrison. Steph is an expert on happiness and wellbeing and the founder of the New Happy, a philosophy based on academic studies and original research to help you to find lasting happiness.   Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
46:03
November 23, 2021
Georgie St Clair on digital wellbeing
In this episode we talk to Georgie St Claire about digital wellbeing. Georgie is a digital wellbeing coach, artist and founder of swapthescroll.com helping people to use digital devices more mindfully.   Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
39:44
November 8, 2021
Dr Eloise Crush on resilience
In this episode we talk to Dr Eloise Crush about resilience. Elle is a psychologist whose research has focussed on psychological resilience.   Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
48:51
November 1, 2021
Gwen Jones on social anxiety
In this episode we talk to Gwen Jones about social anxiety. Gwen is the founder of the Inspired Narrative - a website focussed on positive news, inspiring stories and personal development - giving a voice and a platform for others to share their stories and inspire others. Gwen is also a support worker at the UK charity Mind in Bath. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
47:19
October 25, 2021
Abby Rowe on writing to help yourself
In this episode we talk to Abby Rowe about writing to help yourself. Abby is an author and multi-passionate creative focussing on all things mental health. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
37:57
October 18, 2021
Naomi White on telling your story
In this episode we talk to Naomi White about telling your story. Naomi is a PR coach & consultant and helps product and service-based businesses to get noticed, be heard, and become known, through the power of PR. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
49:34
October 11, 2021
Nikki Peterson on baby loss
In this episode we speak to Nikki Peterson. Nikki is a change, loss and grief coach who helps people to find a way to live with their grief. Through Nikki’s tragic own experience, a lot of her grief-work focuses on baby loss.   Nikki tragically lost her first child at 6 days old. She talks about the grieving process and the importance of grief-focused counselling that helped her cope, feel more positive and eventually have another child.   We discuss the sad statistics of miscarriages and the likelihood of mental health issues after someone has suffered a miscarriage. We also cover the lack of empathy and support from health services and employers that many experience after miscarriages, as well as how important exercise and journaling is when dealing with grief.   Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
47:10
October 4, 2021
Andrew Embling on individual empowerment
In this episode we talk to Andrew Embling about individual empowerment. Andrew is the Director of Wye Dean Wellbeing, a community interest company that provides wellbeing support to local communities in the west of the UK.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:00:38
September 27, 2021
Marco Ricci on talking mental health
In this week's episode we talk to Marco Ricci, the founder of the platform 'Talking Mental Health' - which aims to make talking about mental health part of everyday conversations. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
39:12
September 20, 2021
Rachel Strivelli on breastfeeding & mental health
In this week's episode we talk to Rachel Strivelli about breastfeeding & mental health. Rachel is a writer and an intuitive coach helping people to address feelings of guilt, imposter syndrome and inner-criticism. 2:31 Growing up with low-level anxiety and depression 5:10 Dealing with suicide of a friend 6:02 Getting help from a counselor to deal with panic attacks in college and at Rachel's first job 8:13 Identifying as a highly sensitive person 9:03 Taking in too many stimulants (coffee, tobacco) increased Rachel's panic attacks 12:24 Seasonal Affective Disorder and living in a rainy climate 14:18 Being willing to find a counselor who is a good fit - don't take it personally if the first counselor you have doesn't work for you 16:43 Receiving counseling is an investment in yourself and in your quality of life 18:48 Mental wellbeing as a new parent 21:46 Breastfeeding and Dysmorphic Milk Ejection Reflex (D-MER) 32:41 The relationship between lack of sleep and postpartum depression (PPD) 34:24 How I prioritize my mental health over other lifestyle choices 36:58 Supplements that I take that support mental wellbeing 38:22 Big picture encouragement & advice for new mom's around their wellbeing Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
43:29
September 13, 2021
Cornelia Lucey on positive psychology
In this week's episode we talk to Cornelia Lucey about positive psychology. Cornelia is an author and an award-winning Leadership Consultant and Psychologist, delivering transformational positive psychology for large scale multinationals, SMEs and start-ups. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
59:41
September 6, 2021
Estelle Keeber on finding what works best for you
On this week’s episode of sidekick stories, we’re speaking to Estelle Keeber, founder of Immortal Monkey, a support platform for business owners from startup to level up.  From a young age, Estelle faced mental health struggles. Medication was prescribed, but as we know, medication is only part of the solution. Estelle found support in physical exercise, meditation and breathing exercises. These have helped her control her anxiety and feelings of overwhelm.  In 2000 following the collapse of her business, she found herself collapsing too. With the right tools to support her mental health and the right mindset, she was able to found Immortal Monkey.  A fantastic episode highlighting the importance of resilience and finding the right tools for your mental wellbeing.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
21:50
August 23, 2021
Bethany Robinson on taking control
This week we’re welcoming Bethany Robinson to sidekick stories. Bethany is a teacher, mental health advocate, CrossFit athlete, vlogger and blogger, and was a recruit on season 5 of the TV show, SAS: Who Dares Wins. And, in our opinion, she’s an all round role model! In today’s episode, we talk about her mental health journey, which revolves around bipolar disorder, depression and an abusive relationship. Bethany is a strong advocate for body positivity, and loving your body. This stems from her personal struggles with eating disorders and body dysmorphia. She has an inspirational story of losing 40kgs in just one year and changing her life, from being morbidly obese to an inspirational CrossFit athlete.  Diet, exercise, relationships and sleep are the key ingredients in supporting Bethany’s positive mental health. She’s here to share her learnings and insight. Don’t miss it!  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
55:03
August 16, 2021
Danielle North on a spiritual journey
This week we’re speaking to none other than Danielle North. Danielle is the founder of Pause Global, a retreat and coaching company that inspires people to slow down and pause. In addition, she has written four books on mindfulness and meditation - helping her readers to prioritise mindfulness, calm and positive energy. Danielle grew up in an environment with mental ill health surrounding her; in the form of eating disorders, violence and psychological abuse. Like many others, she realised that only she could take control of her feelings, and started her spiritual journey. This took her across the world - travelling, working, finding herself and developing herself.  As always, we discuss what’s in her mental health toolkit - psychotherapy, meditation, nature, exercise and a healthy dose of courage.  To find out more about Danielle’s retreats or to purchase her books, visit www.pauseglobal.com Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
47:48
August 9, 2021
Ella Greenwood on supporting yourself
In episode 42 of sidekick stories we are talking to Ella Greenwood. Ella is a filmmaker, a mental health activist and an ambassador for stem4, a teen mental health charity.    We welcome Ella on to our show and discuss her life. During her teen years, something changed and a shift happened in her mental health. Like many of us, she faced long waiting times for professional support. This formed her new way of thinking - the only one who can support her, is herself.    Now a filmmaker, Ella takes the lessons learnt from work, proactiveness, into her mental health. Taking a proactive stance on your mental health, thoughts and feelings helps to identify triggers, aids understanding and ultimately will help lay the foundation of a better mental health.   Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
52:49
August 2, 2021
Ellie Frith on self-worth
Trigger warning: Please note this episode contains content about suicide.  Teachers are instrumental in our society. Not only do they educate our children, they help to shape dreams and build confidence. However, it’s no secret that teaching is quite possibly one of the hardest jobs out there.  This week we’re speaking to Ellie Frith. Ellie is a teacher and the founder and host of the Chewy Head podcast, a mental health psychology podcast based on her own mental health journey.  Ellie found herself hospitalised after a breakdown caused by the results her pupils received. This breakdown had a severe impact on her self-worth and ultimately caused suicidal feelings.  In this truly honest and eye-opening conversation, we focus on the importance of self-worth, taking care of yourself and how to achieve a more fulfilling life.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/ 
01:00:51
June 28, 2021
Amelia Wrighton & Emma Morrisroe on bereavement by suicide
Suicide&Co, a charity that supports those bereaved by suicide, was set up by Amelia and Emma after they both suffered loss at the hands of suicide. And this week we’re joined by both to hear more about their story. We learn more about the importance of talking, and sharing experiences. Amelia and Emma both experience catastrophic thinking as a result of their bereavement and share their tools with us. Breathing exercises, aromatherapy and journaling are their chosen coping mechanisms. Suicide and suicide prevention are such crucial, yet difficult and dark topics, however the energy and colour Suicide&Co bring to the table really does make it an accessible and safe topic. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:08:40
June 21, 2021
Dr Erica & Dr Linda on lifestyle medicine
This week we are talking to not one, but two incredible frontline workers, Dr Erica and Dr Linda. Dr Linda works as a NHS Emergency Medicine Doctor in A&E and Dr Erica is a NHS Primary Care Doctor. Together they founded ‘Afternoon Tea with Docs’ and set out to empower everyone to enjoy good health by bringing health experts to the table, over a hot cup of tea! Being Board Certified Lifestyle Medicine Physicians, they introduce us to the holistic approach to medicine. We discuss some simple things that each and every one of us can do to support our mental health - aligning closely to our sidekick values with tools and tips to add to your mental health toolkit. Recognising that prescribed drugs are crucial in treating mental health and supporting the symptoms, we start to look at the underlying problems that we as a society are not doing enough of. And more importantly, what we need to address to find a better solution to the ever-growing numbers. This episode is a fantastic opportunity to hear from our health heroes on the frontline; getting their advice and wisdom to support our mental health conversations. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:13:22
June 14, 2021
Shilpa Panchmatia on entrepreneurial burnout
Entrepreneurship is often glamourised in the media and many successful entrepreneurs have had their stories turned into Hollywood movies. But the reality is that it’s an incredibly difficult journey and one that undoubtedly has a significant impact on the mental health of the entrepreneur. This week we are speaking to Shilpa Panchmatia, a successful entrepreneur who suffered from burnout whilst striving to continually perform at the highest level. She describes it as something that creeps up on you if you’re not careful and of the need to be constantly aware of how you’re feeling as you go through an entrepreneurial journey. We discuss the importance of taking time every day to reflect and do activities that bring you joy, which for Shilpa is daily yoga practice, walks outside and journaling. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
37:32
June 7, 2021
Chloe Metzger on bullying | sidekick stories podcast
Bullying can have a long term effect on your mental health, long into adulthood. There is still a lot of education required around bullying, and today’s episode provides some valuable insight into the impact and effects of bullying.  This week we are speaking to Chloe Metzger, who was bullied at a young age. This had a huge impact on her self-confidence and self-esteem. Luckily she found support through mentoring and counselling, which provided her with the tools and medication she needed to lift her mood.  We also discuss an accident during her time at university, which resulted in Fibromyalgia. Chloe struggles with this chronic pain everyday, and currently there is no cure. Throughout it all, Chloe is doing her best to remain positive and has found relief and comfort in reading and music. This is a must-hear episode for anyone who has experienced bullying, or has seen friends, family or loved ones go through it. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.   sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.   https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:08:21
May 24, 2021
Chris Bundell on sleep & athletic performance
Sleep... Many of us struggle with it, but do we really understand its impact on our mental and physical wellbeing? This week we’re speaking to Chris Bundell, a Strength and Conditioning Coach. In addition to helping his clients reach their sport and fitness goals, he also provides sleep advice to improve their athletic performance.  In order to effectively train, you need to understand how you are feeling both physically and mentally and a big part of this, is maintaining good sleeping habits. In today’s episode we take a look at coping strategies and how we can build resilience and confidence to help us achieve our performance goals. If you’re looking to improve your performance, physically or mentally, then today’s episode of sidekick stories is for you! Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:14:20
May 17, 2021
Alexi & Kyri Pittalis on the mental health Mind Field
It’s Mental Health Awareness Week and we’re speaking to brothers Alexi and Kyri Pittalis. Both brothers have had their own, different experiences with mental health and have teamed up to create The Mind Field Podcast - in which they embark upon a quest to better understand the human mind. Alexi is philosophically-led; trying to understand his purpose as a way of designing his life. Whereas Kyri is focused on open conversations bringing positivity and perspective. Together they bring a fresh outlook on mental wellbeing.  Episode 35 is a must listen for Mental Health Awareness Week 2021. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
40:55
May 10, 2021
Heather Rider on anxiety & perfectionism
Are you struggling with anxiety? Then this week’s episode is a must for you! Heather Rider is an anxiety specialist who helps high achievers suffering from anxiety and perfectionism find the peace and emotional balance they want and need. Allowing them to live their life with confidence, stability and ease. Having had high-functioning anxiety and perfectionism herself, Heather shares her journey with us. Suffering with a severe autoimmune illness, Heather realised that traditional medicinal approaches weren’t working and so she started to look at different ways and methods to treat and ease her anxiety. Journaling and reiki are now a key part of her mental health toolkit and have truly transformed her recovery and mindset. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
55:08
April 26, 2021
Ben Morgan-James on creating conversations
In this week’s episode, we’re talking to Ben. During his school years, Ben struggled with anxiety and emotional outbursts. Although he acknowledged he was struggling, he didn’t know what to do about it. Counselling gave him the answers and support he was looking for, something not many men can acknowledge. Now, 18 years later, Ben makes a conscious effort to ensure he has open and honest conversations about his feelings. An insightful episode into men’s mental health and solutions for mental wellbeing. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
56:48
April 19, 2021
Flo Sharman on coping with multiple illnesses
This week we’re talking to Flo and learning about her history of coping with multiple mental and physical illnesses, and how this has shaped her daily routines. Flo is a mental health campaigner, who we have been lucky enough to include on our blog! She is also a website content creator and an ambassador for MQ Mental Health, a UK charity that champions and funds world-class research to transform the lives of everyone affected by a mental health condition. It’s fair to say that Flo is a fantastic person! At the young age of 8, Flo suffered a physical and mental breakdown which impacted her significantly. In total, she has been unfortunate enough to have been faced with 4 mental illnesses and 2 physical illnesses, which meant she was home-schooled and struggled with a lack of social interaction and friendships. Flo has a really inspirational story and shows how with the right medication, exercise and long walks she has been able to build her resilience. We’ll be sharing more of Flo’s story on our sidekick blog this week - keep your eyes peeled! Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
49:44
April 12, 2021
Roman Mironov on relationships
This week we’re talking to Roman Mironov. Roman suffered from depression for 2 years, after which he immersed himself in self-help books to develop better relationship skills following his divorce.  Using his learnings, he is now a relationship coach. Helping his clients find and keep love in their life. Supporting his clients to bring passion and joy into their relationships and where sadly the relationships are over, he helps them recover and come out of the situation stronger. Something which sounds easy in practice, but takes time to perfect.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
43:42
April 5, 2021
Radha Shah on suicide & community stigma
At the age of 6, Radha and her family fled terror in her home country under the regime of Idi Amin. Growing up in the UK she always felt different, and despite the house always being full of family and the wider community, she often felt lonely. In this very powerful episode, we discuss immigration and how different cultures tackle mental health. At the age of 17, Radha lost her brother to suicide. In the months following, she realised there is still a very big stigma within the Asian community. We discuss the lack of support and views within her community and what needs to change. We also look at the impact within the family, and the impact this had on Radha’s mental health. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
49:38
March 29, 2021
Minty Sheridan on getting men talking
In England, around one in eight men has a common mental health problem such as depression, anxiety, panic disorder or obsessive compulsive disorder. Societal expectations and traditional gender roles play a role in why men are less likely to discuss or seek help for their mental health problems. This week we’re speaking to Minty Sheridan. Following her own mental health struggles, Minty was struck by how her male friends were struggling with their mental health and societal changes. And so the podcast ‘Let's Get Men Talking’’ was born. Minty’s show aims to change the narrative surrounding masculinity and enable open conversations surrounding everyone’s mental health. Something we at sidekick are strong believers in. To find out more or for support visit www.letsgetmentalking.com  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
57:35
March 22, 2021
Justin Tang on getting stung
In today’s episode, we’re speaking to Justin Tang. Justin is the host of a fantastic podcast called ‘GETSTUNG’. “Get Stung?!” we hear you say. Yes! #GetStung is Justin’s mantra - a way of life that is inspired by getting up every single day to challenge your mind, body and soul. In this truly honest and open conversation, Justin sheds light on his upbringing in a broken home, a mother who spent time in prison and his subsequent struggles with substance abuse. We focus on his recovery process and his mental health tool belt that has helped him cope with bipolar and anxiety. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
45:18
March 15, 2021
Special episode - International Women's Day 2021
This is a special episode to celebrate International Women's Day 2021. One of our wonderful sidekick volunteers Heather chatted to Thalia from Botany&Books on Instagram Live this week - where they discussed mental health, sidekick, being a woman and books! Plus they revealed the exciting news that sidekick and Botany&Books are partnering for a very special book and candle collaboration to celebrate Mental Health Week in May. This interview was recorded live on Botany&Books' Instagram channel on International Women's Day 2021. Botany&Books provides beautiful reading experiences to escape your worries into another world - https://www.botanyandbooks.co.uk/
39:15
March 9, 2021
Jon Toms on knowing yourself & faith
This week we’re speaking to Jon Toms. We reflect on his life, understanding his lack of confidence and his jarring behaviours. But we also gain a fascinating insight into his journey of self-discovery, in which he spent three years in California and took part in a faith-based personal development course that provided him with value for life - self-compassion and self-awareness. Our key take away? Check-in with yourself, every single day. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
49:08
March 8, 2021
Hope Virgo on eating disorders
Today marks the start of Eating Disorders Awareness Week and we’re speaking to Hope Virgo.  Hope is a mental health campaigner, public speaker and author of “Stand Tall Little Girl: facing up to anorexia”. Following abuse as a child, food became a mechanism to cope with her feelings. At 12, Hope was diagnosed with an eating disorder and eventually was hospitalised for a year of intensive recovery. Lockdown has been an eye-opening experience for her, and many others facing mental health struggles. Every day is a challenge on the road to recovery, but Hope is confident and has the drive to achieve happiness. If you’ve been affected by any of the issues raised during this episode or would like to find out more, please visit https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/ for specialist support. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:00:43
March 1, 2021
Lisa Oglesbee on life coaching
Former paralegal Lisa Oglesbee, changed her career after going through severe OCD, anxiety and depression. Lisa is now a Life Coach for women who suffer from perfectionism and anxiety and the podcast host of ‘Love this Bitch’ and ‘Vibrant Life Allies’. Anxiety about her health had a severe impact on her life following a gallbladder removal surgery. We talk to her about the therapies and support provided and how eventually Life Coaching transformed her life; her mental health, her career and her future. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
50:14
February 22, 2021
Suzanna Hext on being an athlete
After an awful horse riding accident, international dressage rider Suzanna Hext was left paralysed from the waist down. We discuss the impact of her accident on her life, her parents and her future.  Watching the London Paralympics from her hospital bed, her stubbornness kicked in. Suzanne is now a Paralympic athlete, competing in para-dressage and para-swimming. She won a triple gold medal at the European Para-Dressage Championships in 2017 and a silver and bronze at the World Para-Swimming Championships in 2019. We can’t wait to see what she does in Tokyo this year!  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
57:42
February 15, 2021
Melissa Rohlfs on emotional eating & sugar bingeing
For some people a sugary treat is just that; a treat that is enjoyed in moderation and on their own terms. For others, sugar can be an addiction like drugs and alcohol - a coping mechanism to deal with and mask emotions such as sadness, loneliness or boredom. This week we’re talking to Melissa Rohlfs, who after experiencing a tragic event at a young age started a downward spiral of emotional eating and sugar bingeing that lasted throughout her childhood. Luckily Melissa came to realise the impact food was having on her physical and mental wellbeing and changed her relationship with food for good. After realising how many people shared her struggles she founded free2bcoaching, offering help to women to end emotional eating and sugar bingeing so that they can feel comfortable and confident in their bodies and be set free from their food struggles. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
52:02
February 8, 2021
Jason Farr on cold water exposure
Does the thought of cold water give you immediate chills? Cold water therapy is on the up and becoming a well-known tool for mental wellbeing. This week we’re talking to personal trainer Jason Farr about his experiences with cold water exposure, based on the work by Wim Hof. By the end of today’s episode, you’ll be on your way to the beach! Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:09:09
February 1, 2021
Michael Simon on men's mental health
Unpacking your life experiences and dealing with the accompanying feelings can sometimes take years. This week we speak to Michael Simon, the founder of a brand new service, The Men Toolbox. We talk about the pressures of being a man, a father or a partner, and the expectations that come with it, that can have profound effects on men’s mental health. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:00:56
January 25, 2021
Carly Victoria on journaling
Choosing to turn her passion into her career, Carly Victoria took the step from a job she loved, into the unknown. Launching her life-coaching and journaling business last year, Carly shares with us the impact of stress on her mental health and how journaling can support a healthier mindset and living.   Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
59:07
January 18, 2021
Frenchaire Gardner on entrepreneurship & bipolar disorder
Bipolar can be a very daunting diagnosis, even if you have two degrees in Psychology. This week we are joined by Frenchaire Gardner, our first overseas guest. We discuss her diagnosis, the ups and downs of bipolar, the role history and community plays on our mental health, and finally the success of her business and how bipolar has had a positive impact on her creativity.    Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
56:44
January 11, 2021
Lauren Quigley on the pressures of professional sport
Have you ever wondered what it feels like to compete at a professional level? To be surrounded by world-class athletes? What it takes, mentally and physically to be on the international sporting stage? It’s time to find out!  This week we are truly honoured to share an open conversation with Lauren Quigley. Lauren is a competitive swimmer who has represented Great Britain at the FINA World Aquatics Championships and England at the 2014 Commonwealth Games - winning three silver medals. Lauren now runs a mentoring organisation, Quigley Sport, to mentor the next generation of athletes. Following in the footsteps of her aunt and mother, Lauren took to competitive swimming at the age of 10. With the guidance of her family, she quickly made a name for herself on the swimming scene.  Competing at a professional level can come with a price - long days, nutrition regimes and an impact on your mental health. Lauren faced her first mental struggles after she was made to feel that she wasn’t good enough, despite winning three silver medals. As time progressed her struggles grew, until in 2016 she finally broke down and confided in her family. With the love and support of her family, friends and coaches, Lauren has found a way through the darkness, and now lives by the motto “celebrate everything”. And we for one, can truly get behind that! Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:01:39
January 4, 2021
Ashley Davis on overcoming adversity
Your mind is stronger than you’ll ever know. You can overcome anything, as long as you put your mind to it.   This week we are talking to Ashley Davis. Ashley works for Papyrus, supporting suicide prevention, with a focus on people under the age of 35. In addition to the incredible work he does, Ashley has faced one of life’s greatest challenges.   When Ashley was 19, one decision changed the course of his life. Following a catastrophic accident, he spent 14 months in the hospital learning how to live again. In this raw and honest conversation, we learn the impact his accident had on his family and Ashley’s experiences with his nurses and medical staff, and not unsurprisingly his mental wellbeing.   We discuss his mental health struggles after leaving the hospital, and his coping mechanisms which include friendship, sport, and family.    Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.   Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.    sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.    https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:04:23
December 21, 2020
Lucia Fontaina-Powell on women's health & grief
In order to believe in your body - its strengths and its capabilities, the first step is to begin to understand it. At sidekick, we believe in shining a light on subjects that are taboo, or perhaps still face a lot of stigmas - subjects that certainly don’t deserve that label. The more we speak up and share our stories, the easier it becomes for many others. This week, we’re speaking to Lucia Fontaina-Powell about women’s health and the severe impact this can have on mental health. Lucia is a community lead at Daye, a research and development company that’s just launched the world's first CBD tampon. Roughly 50% of the world’s population struggle with complications or side effects as part of their menstrual cycle. Whether this is hormonal, medication-induced, or more complex conditions such as endometriosis. The impact this has on a large amount of the population often goes unnoticed, or is considered a taboo. In addition to Lucia’s mental health journey from university to relationships, we discuss another topic facing stigma - grief. After losing her father earlier this year to Covid-19, we learn how grief and coping mechanisms helped shape Lucia’s mental wellbeing.  If you have been affected by a sudden bereavement during this crisis and need support, advice, and guidance - please call Sudden Bereavement Help on 0800 2600 400. Alternatively, you can call Grief Talk on 0808 802 0111. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
58:24
December 7, 2020
Trailer - first 15 episode showcase
For those that are new to the show, here is a trailer showcasing some moments from our first 15 episodes that featured video guests.  The sidekick stories podcast is a platform for people to share their stories to reduce the stigma around mental ill-health and encourage more people to speak out. The show features raw, honest conversations with guests about their mental health journey.   We are a community creating tools, organising information and encouraging positive conversations about mental health. Download our free sidekick app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  sidekick.org.uk
03:05
November 30, 2020
Hakeem S. Allen on identity
Understanding and accepting your identity is key to finding confidence and strength in yourself.  In this week's episode, we're speaking to Hakeem S. Allen. Hakeem is the Founder of The Anti-Racist Social Club which works to create spaces and resources for education and open dialogue with White people and non-Black POC about becoming anti-racist (www.theantiracistsocial.club). In this role, he spends countless hours sharing his lived experiences through original content and the workshops he leads in organisations and businesses.  As a gay Black male, growing up in a conservative military suburb in America led to a mixture of confusion, bullying, anxiety, depression, and ultimately loneliness. Looking back at the memories that shaped his childhood, we discuss the emotional scars that shape our mindset and identity in our later years. In this fascinating episode we discuss growing up without a sense of belonging, the long-term damage bullying causes, the importance of vulnerability (especially in men), how language shapes us, and embracing your identity and celebrating your true self. A must-listen for anybody struggling to come to terms with or communicate their true identity.  Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:06:33
November 23, 2020
Philip on addiction
What if one phone call could change the whole course of your life? 21 years ago, one sentence brought Philip’s life to a screaming halt, bringing him back down to earth. One phone call, that to this day plays a pivotal role in his everyday life, changed the whole course of his life.  For over 12 years, Philip faced an addiction to alcohol. Able to keep up a façade and continue his professional career, it took one friend to confront him for the realisation to kick in. Sharing his experiences of recovery from addiction, the impact of alcoholics anonymous, and finding the right mental health tools - Philip brings to life a community of support and fellowship that frankly, we could all benefit from.  Through this episode, we realise that no matter the mental health challenges you are facing, the three key takeaways remain the same: gratitude, mindfulness, and self-reflection. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
51:17
November 9, 2020
Andy Hix on mindfulness & meditation
Philosophy, mindfulness, and meditation. A reflection on how the world around us, impacts our wellbeing. This week, we welcome Andy Hix to our podcast. Andy runs Wellbeing Capital Partners, specialising in providing mental health support to the financial services industry. He is also a qualified mindfulness trainer - educating companies, students, and prisoners about the importance of mindfulness.  Reflecting on his youth and his strong activist stance on the world, he now recognises behaviours and emotions that he was oblivious to at the time. We learn how this has shaped him today, and his coping mechanisms to get through negative thoughts. Andy also introduces us to his experiences with meditation, and how mindfulness has found a place in his day to day life. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:00:30
October 26, 2020
Jamie Clements on relationships, anxiety & breathwork
Acknowledging and working through your mental health is a tough ask. It’s daunting to dig deeper and understand where your triggers are coming from. Learning to have a relationship with yourself, and most importantly, loving yourself, is key when wanting to understand and improve your mental health. Jamie Clements, the host of the Man Down podcast, joins us this week to discuss his mental health journey. After his parents split up, he started noticing a change in his behaviour and outlook on life. Your childhood and upbringing set you up for your adult life. Often we don’t realise the severity of this impact until it’s too late. Jamie explains how his adult relationships have been impacted by a fear of abandonment, and how he has come to accepting and improving this.  Investing in his mental health, Jamie has spent the last two years learning breathwork. It now forms part of his mental health toolkit. Sharing the origins and techniques with us, it might be exactly what you need to calm and connect to your inner self. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
57:22
October 19, 2020
Alice Wright on psychosis
Sometimes a switch can go in your mind, out of the blue, and your reality changes within seconds. Psychosis is a mental illness that is rarely spoken about when discussing mental health, and affects less than 1 in 100 adults in the UK. As we continue raising awareness of the different types of mental health disorders, this week we discuss psychosis with alice wright. Alice Wright’s world changed within hours. Following an incredible high, she fell into her first psychosis whilst on holiday. Voices, hallucinations and heightened emotions - a scary but very real feeling. Having experienced two psychotic episodes in the last 5 years, alice is able to share most of her memories from the episodes. The medical treatment she received during and after her episodes, highlight the intricacy of psychosis and how important the support from loved ones is. Throughout it all, self-care and kindness were key. Perhaps we should all take a page out of her book? Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
57:41
October 13, 2020
Sam Coles on dealing with illness
Mental health can often be overlooked when receiving a physical health diagnosis. Changes to your physical health can have a strong impact on both body and mind, and should both be treated as equally important.  For the first time on sidekick stories, we are talking about the impact your physical health can have on your mental health. In this episode, Sam Coles shares with us how her diagnosis with Ankylosing Spondylitis impacted her mental wellbeing. Together with the decision to have a double mastectomy, Sam found herself facing a tough period in her life. Impacting her outlook on life, as well as her relationships with friends and family. Routine became a key part of her day, to ensure she stays on top of her health. However, as with everything it’s about striking the right balance between enjoyment and taking care of yourself. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
58:17
October 5, 2020
Rhys Jones on depression & self-harming
Between World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10th, and World Mental Health Awareness Day on October 10th, we’re encouraging open and honest conversations about the difficult and prevalent topic of suicide. Helping to raise awareness and helping to prevent people from acting on suicidal thoughts. Opening up about his mental health journey in this episode, Rhys Jones introduces us to the impact depression had on his life. Rhys shares his history of unhealthy coping mechanisms, self-harm, hitting rock bottom, and ultimately the road to recovery with healthier coping mechanisms. A story of self-acceptance and the importance of talking to friends and family. A powerful and honest view on a topic that many shy away from, but ultimately a topic that could save a life. If you’ve been affected by any of the topics covered in this episode, please don’t suffer alone and reach out to the Samaritans on 116 123. #WeAllKnowAnAlex Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:03:07
September 28, 2020
Richard Wallace on supporting a loved one
When you struggle with mental health, you know the challenges and emotions that come paired with it. You learn to recognise triggers and you do your best to take care of yourself. But what happens when you’re the one on the outside, watching the unwanted guest join your family? Following our conversation with Kate Wallace on the previous episode (https://youtu.be/2hpCnE1N9UE), in which we learnt about postnatal depression - this week her husband Richard joins us. He shares his experience of watching postnatal depression take a place at their table. Being a new parent is incredibly daunting, and comes with challenges of its own without the added concerns of mental health. We speak to Richard about his experiences of first realising something wasn’t quite right, how he was able to support his wife through her postnatal depression, his views on how as a society we need to change, and finally, the positive changes medication made to their lives. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. Boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
43:42
September 21, 2020
Kate Wallace on post natal depression
Becoming a parent is sold to us as a bubble of happiness, excitement and a lack of sleep. However, there is a side to becoming a mother that many don’t speak about. In this week’s episode, Kate Wallace shares her mental health journey which started when she became a mother. Something changed that had a profound effect on her for over two years. Through friends and family Kate was able to find help, try different therapies and medication all in aid of supporting her struggle with postnatal depression. An open and honest conversation about a side of motherhood many shy away from - it’s time to change the stigma and encourage seeking help.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. Boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:05:04
September 14, 2020
Hannah Miner on personal coping strategies
It’s ok if you haven’t done anything yet. There is too much guilt around “should have”. Forget that, it’s ok not to do anything today, and tomorrow, and next week. When you’re ready, you’ll know. You don’t have to do anything big to be a success. Getting out of bed or eating a piece of fruit is and can be a big achievement. It may be small, but it’s not to be undermined, there is power in small actions. No matter how low you are feeling, reflect on your day and recognise your achievements - they are bigger than you realise. Sharing insight from her personal experience with therapy, coping mechanisms and learnings from life, Hannah Miner allows us into her way of thinking and the strength of language. She is a strong believer of accessibility of mental health, both in services as well as terminology. The stigma and associations with mental health remain mostly negative, and changing your wording can change your views. Hannah prefers to speak about emotional wellbeing, bringing that all important positive spin on her journey in this space. Putting yourself first can be a challenge, but if you do it for your physical health you should strive to do the same for your emotional wellbeing. Whatever you need to do to make yourself feel comfortable and confident - as Nike says, just do it. Never feel guilty for doing something that will make you feel good. Don’t you dare beat yourself up about it. Hannah has given us a new life motto - do what you need to do to make yourself feel good, unapologetically.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. Boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
42:26
July 24, 2020
Matthew Halstead on negative food & exercise behaviours
Everything starts with a thought. And if everything starts with a thought, then essentially, you can achieve anything you wish to. Matthew Halstead wholeheartedly stands and believes in this, and by all means, we all should. Matt runs his own consultancy, is a full-time husband and father, is studying a PhD in quantum chemistry and is the co-creator of sidekick. He’s got his hands full! From the outside, he is the confident, energetic, fun (but slightly crazy) friend we all wish we had (or even were!). But when you scratch the surface, you will soon find the insecurities that have driven his actions for over a decade.  An unhealthy relationship with exercise - and therefore food - from the age of 13, has pushed Matt to do incredible, but very unhealthy things to his body. Running ultramarathons with little to no training, or eating a week’s worth of food in one day. Only in the last couple of years, has Matt started to see the patterns, and how his mental health has played a key part in this unhealthy relationship.  In this episode, Matt shares his struggles of confidence, validation, and fears which showed itself through compulsive behaviours. Before sharing his personal mental health toolkit, he shines a light on the turning point in his health and ultimately his promise, that he has kept to this day.  Make a promise to yourself today, don’t break it. Promise? Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:06:13
July 17, 2020
James Shrager on anxiety
In a really open and honest conversation, James Shrager lets us into his world of mental health struggles and how it has shaped who he is today. If you’ve ever experienced anxiety, you will feel heard and seen. If you haven’t, you will gain a real understanding of what anxiety feels like. James is one of the co-creators of sidekick. When he’s not building the sidekick app, he’s a father, a husband and has a full-time job at an innovation and growth consultancy in London. In this episode we talk to James about his mental health journey, where it began, where it’s taken him and how far he has come today.  Reflecting on his childhood and the impact this had on his mental health, James takes us on his journey of growth through university and into adulthood. Slowly beginning to understand and connect events that eventually contributed to his mental health struggles, we recall his first spells of anxiety and the toll it took on his daily routine and life.  Finding a suitable therapy model can be really tricky, there’s no one size fits all. James tried and tested several options in the hope of finding a solution to his anxiety. He lets us in on the process and learnings he took from the different therapies. Providing great insight, James talks us through each piece of advice he was given and how it’s formed his current coping “toolkit”. If you’re struggling, please don’t suffer alone and reach out for help. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:07:12
July 13, 2020
Chris Flanders on career change & divorce
We live in a society where you introduce yourself by way of name and career. Why do we allow our careers to define who we are, or indeed our worth? Chris Flanders shares his change of career and the importance of following your heart and interests. Chris is a geography teacher, CrossFit instructor and yogi. He is passionate about standing in front of his students, educating, and inspiring with his enthusiasm. You can find him on Instagram doing deadlifts, practicing yoga with his cat, and generally reminding us how important physical health is. Mental health issues come in different shapes and forms, and we are all susceptible. You don’t need to be formally diagnosed to face struggles. In this episode, Chris shares two key life experiences that have shaped him into the person he is today and reflect how he now stands in life. It’s a well-known fact that men are less likely to speak up about their struggles and ask for help. The stigma that still surrounds men’s mental health is slowly easing but is still very much in place. In both his career change and relationship breakdown, Chris struggled to speak up. He shares why this is so difficult and relatable for a lot of people, plus his chosen coping mechanisms to not have to face the reality of the situation.  It may seem to the outside world that somebody is carrying their situation well, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t heavy. Check-in with your friends, help them carry the weight. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:11:44
July 6, 2020
Marina Pacini on negative self talk
We’re all guilty of having expectations. But what do you do when your expectations are not met, at all? A harsh reality that Marina Pacini is finding herself in. Moving to a new country is a life-changing event, and add COVID-19 into the bowl and you’ve got a potential recipe for disaster. Luckily, Marina knows the triggers and is able to practice self-love.  Marina is a 26 year old psychologist and expat, who has recently relocated to the Netherlands from sunny Barcelona. Offering advice from her profession, Marina provides amazing coping mechanisms any one of us can use in one or more aspects of life.  Previously working with cancer patients, Marina has supported her patients through tough times. However, tables turned when she started to realise she was speaking negatively about herself. In a very relatable conversation, Marina opens up about the impact of living in a new country, dealing with rejection and how to cope with tension in your relationship.  We are introduced to the concept that we need to calm our minds before we attempt to work through struggles with therapy or exercises. It’s a no brainer to warm up your muscles before a workout, so why are we not calming our mind before a mental workout?  If you haven’t had any luck with meditation, or you think it won’t work for you, you’ll finish this podcast knowing that it's time you gave it (another) go. Don’t give up, it might just be the tool for you. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community. sidekick. Boost your mental wellbeing. https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:02:18
June 29, 2020
Thomas Drewry on depression
A bad day is just a bad day, and you’re allowed to wallow. Just one piece of advice from our first sidekick guest, Thomas Drewry. He reminds us that you don’t have to always be positive, and you can be angry. We’re only human! But remember, tomorrow is a new day, and we go at it again. Born in France, Thomas is the co-founder of Emolument, a provider of crowdsourced data on compensation. He’s also a TV producer, comedy writer, and has even done stand-up comedy! Making the decision to take medication for your mental health is something that many of us face. There is a real fear of how your body will react, and if you’ll ever be able to cope without. For six years, Thomas tried a number of different medications to support his mental health. He later learned he had spent this time on the wrong medication with little to no impact. Now on the right medication, Thomas shares his experiences of dealing with his depression. By creating a healthy lifestyle, finding the right medication, and tailoring common coping mechanisms to his personal needs. A great take away; learning to manage your own expectations and acknowledging things that sit out of your circle of control, this can really empower you in your everyday life.  A great insight into life as a high performing entrepreneur, the highs and lows of depression and creating a lifestyle in which you can thrive. Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. Download our free app, connect with us on Instagram and join the community.  sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.  https://sidekick.org.uk/
01:00:20
June 22, 2020
James Shrager & Matthew Halstead on the sidekick story
Welcome to the very first episode of the sidekick stories podcast. In true sidekick style, we encourage an open and honest conversation with co-creators, James Shrager and Matthew Halstead. Putting their values to the test by diving under the skin of how sidekick became what it is today.  1:18: The becoming of sidekick- James and Matt let us in on their friendship and how sidekick was born. We gain a deeper understanding of their personal experiences with mental health, their coping mechanisms, and the importance of talking.  7:40: Combining industry knowledge- how much experience do you need to build an app from scratch? James shares his experiences in building apps and the skills gained from these projects. Although not a developer, Matt shines a light on how he gained his knowledge in technology from an unexpected overseas project.  14:45: Turning passion into something real- we learn that sidekick is bringing together a community of volunteers, based on passion across the board. The need for accessible therapy is one of the key issues sidekick are addressing, through a library of tools.  19:05: Mental health awareness- encouraging conversations about mental health is one of sidekick’s key aims. We touch on ensuring you’re open to these conversations and the difference it can make.  24:17: User first mentality- sidekick is completely free, yes really. The mental health industry is huge and to many a money-making scheme. Matt explains to us how they are differentiating themselves in an overcrowded market place through attribution and sharing information - even if that means potentially losing their audience.  26:10: Co-creation- everything sidekick does, is done in partnership. Creating a safe and friendly environment where every voice is heard is in their dna, as shown in deciding on a name for their app.  28:51: Community is key- the sky is the limit but, for now, sidekick is focusing on the next 6 months. We learn more about the six priorities that have been put in place and the increasing size of a very talented community James and Matt have built around them. Community means everything for sidekick, and it shows.  40:40: What to expect- we know everything about the why, the vision, the community. But what actually does sidekick do and how does it work? We get an introduction to the exercises, topics, and functionalities within the app. sidekick is all about introducing and trialling new methods to boost your mood, in a non-pressurised environment. Finally, a personalised toolkit can be created with all the methods that are most valuable to you.  45:36: Tried and tested exercises- everything sidekick is built on, comes from personal (therapy) experiences for both Matt and James. The co-creators share some of the exercises that have been eye-opening or provided a lasting impact on their mental health.  50:58: Tailoring content- user data is private within sidekick, but, as with everything these days, there are analytics set up to support the community with making key decisions on content. If users are giving their usage data, James believes they should be giving them something back for that. It’s all about making the content easier to find and use, without being overwhelming.  55:16: Get downloading- we task the sidekick co-creators with the ultimate question - why should somebody download sidekick? Choice, safety, space to explore support are some of the reasons to give it a go and find out your wellbeing preferences. 59:37: The highs- James and Matt look back on the journey to date and identify their personal highlights during this project. Matt shares one of his favourite poems and how it’s been applicable to their journey.  Listen and subscribe to the sidekick stories podcast on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. sidekick. boost your mental wellbeing.
01:05:25
June 6, 2020