Planning Director Simon Blair Shares His Story for Mental Health Week

D2 Rail’s Senior Team continue to share their own personal experiences for Mental Health Week, which this year is focusing upon stress. Here’s Planning Director, Simon Blair’s…

“Like Sarah, mental health has affected my close family and friends; it is a subject that can be hard to discuss and confront but I’ve found that talking is the best form of defence.

I never saw myself as having ‘depression’; I certainly know what the severe side of this illness looks like, having seen it affect close family members. However, I never appreciated that in its mildest form, depression can still have a significant impact on your life.

There have been times when I have felt stressed, overwhelmed, and unable to cope with conflicting demands. In all cases, the close support from family (in particular, my wife Claire), friends and work colleagues have helped me to overcome the feelings of hopelessness and helped me to change my mood in a positive way. The best things that friends and family can do is simply listen. They often don’t need to say anything, just being willing to listen to your problems makes a massive difference.

A devastating diagnosis of a close friend and their positive response to difficult news has been awe inspiring to me. Since this moment, I have committed to stay positive, no matter what the outlook.

Did you know that there is good evidence to show that going through difficult experiences in your childhood can make you vulnerable to experiencing depression later in life? This is something I never appreciated but I can relate to.

My best advice to maintain good mental health is to keep talking and ask for help.” #letstalk

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