Category Archives: Advocacy

Executive Addiction:How to Know When to Seek Help by Eva Benoit


Executive Addiction

Pre script: Am so grateful to be receiving guests posts these days especially on a topic so close to heart and home. I have seen many addicted and so much pain, I can only hope they reach out everyday even after a relapse

Are you living a double life? Are you, by all appearances, a hardworking professional by day and an addict by night? How do you know when you need to seek help?

If you’ve asked yourself these questions and are concerned you need help for an addiction, take heart knowing there are a lot of options for you to get the treatment you need. Our guide is here to support you on your journey to a healthier life.

First, if you have difficulty making it through the day without some form of chemical stimulant, or if you need alcohol or some other depressant to bring you down, you are probably an addict. Additionally, there are many other telltale signs of addiction you should be aware of, including:

  • Thinking frequently about your drug of choice (DOC)

  • Feeling like you can’t fit in or make it without your DOC

  • Performing uncharacteristic or dangerous behaviors in order to get your DOC

  • Regularly being under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol

Addiction is less about how often or how much you use, and more about the consequences of your using. If your substance use causes problems in your life, you may have an abuse issue.

Addicts are all ages, shapes and sizes, and from every career path and socioeconomic background. Addiction is also a chronic issue, meaning that it’s a lifelong condition; if you’re an addict, you’re one for life, and you will need to work on your recovery every day.

If you’re hesitant to seek treatment out of fear it will require you to take time off from work, the good news is that you can most likely get help from an outpatient facility on your schedule; this would allow you to continue working over the course of your treatment. Inpatient centers can be effective if you need to get away from your daily life and the impulse to use, but that makes it difficult to keep things close to “normal life.” If you want or need to continue working, outpatient treatment may be your best option.

If you seek medical treatment, your information will not be shared with your boss. The only time a treatment professional would share that you are in treatment would be if you gave them written permission, or if they felt you were a danger to yourself or others. Otherwise, people can find out only if you share your news, or if they guess it from your behavior. If you take medical leave and you don’t want to share the reason with your boss or co-workers, they will not know the nature of your absence.

Check with your company’s HR department about your company’s medical and mental health benefits options. Your company may have an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) that allows you to take time off to get better without fear of losing your job. Make an appointment with an HR rep to discuss your situation confidentially; they can be a great referral resource, as well as answer questions about your options. Even if you work for a small firm, your company’s health insurance may cover substance abuse treatment in full or in part.

Outside of the office, there are many additional resources for those seeking help for addiction. For example, the SAMHSA National Helpline offers free, confidential treatment referral in English and Spanish for individuals and their families seeking help for substance abuse. The number is 1-800-662-HELP (4357), and the organization takes calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Additionally, you can find treatment centers in your area using SAMHSA’s locator tool.

If you’re an addict, you have a choice to make every day, every hour, every minute whether you use or not — but you don’t have to struggle alone. You have many options for getting the treatment you need. Don’t let the stress of your job — or the fear of losing it — keep you from taking action for your well-being. Choose right now to get the help you need.

About Eva

About 6 years ago, Eva Benoit left her job as an office manager to pursue being a life, career, and overall wellness coach. She specializes in helping professionals with stress and anxiety, but welcomes working with people from all walks of life. She works with her clients to discover and explore avenues that will bring them balance, peace, and improved overall well-being that can last a lifetime. Her website is evabenoit.com and she is author of the upcoming book, The 30-Day Plan for Ending Bad Habits and Improving Overall Health.

Have a great weekend everyone and know you are not alone in any struggles

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Introducing The Hope Centre and Yensi my heroine


 

Hello world, happy new week. A few months ago, I received a wonderful and dynamic lady called Yensi Helen Jokem in my modest abode at a time when my left eye was threatening shut down. I concluded after that trial that indeed in life, it could sometimes get worse before it gets better.  Hope kept me going during that very challenging period of time, one which equally saw me doing a 70 days spiritual journey with long intermittent fasting.

Yensi is the Founder and CEO of  The Hope Center, and she has a dynamic team; oh how I wish I were one of them. It is so awesome working on something so noble as instilling hope for one of the most vulnerable and marginalized group of human beings. Whether we all agree or not, women and girls are victims of told and untold atrocities all over the world and in alarming proportions. Indeed, violence against women seems to be so common and would I call it ‘evil effective’, to the point that it is being replicated in wars and civil unrest on large scales with the intention of causing long term physical and psychological damage to the victims and all those concerned with her existence (when the woman is damaged, her entire family suffer and her husband’s ego and reputation is tainted once and for all). Here I am talking about violence against women which is now internationally considered a weapon of war.

Truth be told, if we taught our children to respect one another and not resort to violence as the means or resolving disputes and conflicts, they would likely grow up with those values. They would respect each other as siblings and partners, and will chose dialogue over violence more often than we currently see.

 

We survivors of Domestic Violence also need to share our stories through all mediums possible. We need to stop the vicious cycle of victimhood to silencehood to nothinghood. Anyways, I did when Yensi asked me to, and was really honoured when my story was featured in the very first edition of their awesome magazine: “STOP THE DV” with DV meaning Domestic Violence. Yensi and I both attended the landmark and over due Leading Ladies conference in Yaounde some time ago, and that is where she gave me a copy of the magazine featuring my own survivor and success story. What an honour and priviledge.

DV is for real and we really need to be the hope for one another. DV has led to mental health challenges and illnesses, the trauma can be destabilizing and damaging for the rest of one’s life. It can never be overemphasized, the time to speak up is always now. Stigma is still so rife even ‘developed countries’, what more can we expect in ‘least developed countries’ like Cameroon?

It is for all the above, and for the charm and courtesy I find in Yensi, that I am proud to consider her one of my heroines. Thank you Yensi for reaching out to me, and for all the awesome work you do out there. There is help available people, do not suffer in silence out of shame and stigma.

P.S: If you or any organization you know, would love to donate to the Hope Center, kindly do not hesitate to contact Yensi or the center through their Facebook Page.

My Heart cries out for Boubou’s Case: Any mite goes a long way


Boubou

Hello World,

When I recently went on GoFundMe with the intention of starting a campaign to crowd source some funds for an MSC in Mental Health Psychology to start in September, I could not help but read this campaign. My spirit moved me to do all I could to get the word out and help a desperate family get the utmost medical attention their sweet Boubou needed.

I found an local number on the campaign and got in touch, and it was Boubou’s mother herself and she was from my own country – ha. Boubou is 5 years and has probably been through so so much we can’t even begin to imagine. She told me he now had induced epilepsy – oh my poor Boubou. Boubou is his nickname and it is an affective name for a sweet baby like him.

Please, let me stop writing and just wish that any gentle readers and followers of my blog will donate a mite to Boubou’s cause, and why not share this post as much as possible.

May God bless us all abundantly

Have a great week

How do you define yourself? Here is my how…


 

 

How do you define yourself Marie Abanga asked the journalist? and I said the following as it flowed from my heart: “I am a Person of Passions and a Tale of Talents”. What else would you want to know when someone defines themselves in such clear terms? But the look on the journalist’s face wasn’t seemingly satisfactory even if he didn’t say so. The interview was by TV 5 Africa on epilepsy and mental illness, questioning me in my capacity as the Country Director of the Gbm Foundation.

Their background check had indicated I was a lawyer, a mental health advocate, and  an author. They didn’t get the update that I was equally a CBT Therapist, a clinical psychologist, a motivational speaker and a life coach. When I introduced myself therefore at the beginning, I rolled through all the different stuffs I do and how passionate I am about each one and grateful for the different talents. As an author, I have written over 5 books and several poems, some of which I have turned into songs and look forward to going into a studio to record same. I will just stop at these few passions with their accompanying talents.

Indeed, my career path is in three dimensions although I can see them merging in one big jumble in 5 years. The lawyer will meet the Dr in Psy and the author will also join them and one new big path will emerge for me to keep following wherever they lead in all stubborn but passionate faith.

And so, I forge on with my passions, and the one which captivates and occupies me more recently is psychotherapy. I have a diploma with merits in psychology and a distinctions in CBT Therapy. I want to take an Msc in mental health psychology when schools resume and I also want to have a better understanding of addictions, substance abuse, dis-intoxication and rehabilitation.

Indeed, I was recently so honoured when two bloggers offered to write guest articles on the above. I will be putting them up on Wednesday and Friday, and intend to create a page for addiction and resources and its link to mental health.

Having found my purpose and got a very clear revelation of who I am, getting grounded in how I define myself brings me great joy and fills me with tremendous gratitude to God – my Higher Power for all the inspiration and motivation.

And you gentle readers and followers, how do you define yourself if I may ask?

Even if only for Ambe, I wouldn’t stop doing all the advocacy I do


Plain Me
One of the products of the photo shoot: Remember the post behind the scenes?

Hello World,

I am still dabbling with my different grooves; but I could tell from the work out rhythm this morning, they are coming up slowly but surely.
I was therefore very delighted to read the following in my email like 2 days ago:

Dear madam,

I have read your two books, “My Brother’s Journey From Genius To Simpleton” and “My Unconventional Loves.” Equally I just visited your website a few minutes ago, and the Gabriel Bebonbechem Foundation’s website, though I’ve not read much from there yet, but will do so subsequently.

I thought of writing to you because you are indeed an inspiration. When one takes a move to “Make their mess a message” and their “Test a testimony”, it’s an eye opener for others who have faced such similar situations and have withdrawn from the society to stand tall and rather help others with their past experiences. I was moved by the sincere stories in your memoir-book, that I had to give others to read too.

Please continue writing, blogging and speaking too. I believe that just like it did for me, the book will be an inspiration for others too, and a guide book to watch the things they do in life.

And oh, Gabby’s story was so sad, pitiful and… I don’t know how to describe it. The story made me cry, most especially because of the negligence given to epileptics. It was a good initiative creating a memorial foundation to take care of epileptic and mental patients. Please permit me say as a youth, I work with a little initiative called Child Enrichment As Future Leaders with the vision of empowering children, youths and the underprivileged. In our own little way, we can always support the foundation’s efforts and partner in carrying out activities.

A little about me-My name is Che Herbert Ambesi, a Level 300 student in the University of Buea reading Accounting. I love reading inspirational books, novels, plays and Christian literature, and I write a little too. Particularly concerned about the needs of youths and the civil society, I blog about success on cheambe.wordpress.com (Ambe’s Diary), and work with Child Enrichment As Future Leaders (CEAFL), a start up which was initiated by a female friend and class mate of mine two years ago, to see how we can in our own little way contribute to the society (I currently serve as President).

Madam, you are my role model. Keep inspiring!

Happy New Year in arrears,

Ambe

 

P.s: Kindly if you can, visit his blog and show some encouragement. He has like half a dozen posts and few comments too lol. He is full of potential and at this rate he’ll sure be up to all he sets out to do. I have replied and I think he is yet to get to his emails because internet especially in that region is a luxury. Hence am all the more delighted to read his email.

Happy Tuesday everybody

 9 soul wishes I have on my 39th Birthday are…


More than any birthday wishes or gifts; reading and reflecting on this post will bring me such joy and appreciation for your time

  1. That my PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) be as visible as my RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis);
  2. That when my head spins like a carousel making it hard to think and act normal, it attracts as much sympathy and why not empathy, just like when my joints ache and my knee cap swells making it hard to walk;
  3. That when the inflammations from the RA make me writhe in pain and am more nervous, agitated and weird, it be just understood as the natural consequence of the physical pain without any allusion to my PTSD;
  4. That when I need to rest or stay away and just be alone doing my thing,  even if I should normally be functional and ‘acting normal’, it will not be construed as having an attitude;
  5. That whether on any meds or not, that should not determine/grossly affect my state of health, wellbeing nor feeling of belonging;
  6. That my sons grow to not distinguish between my conditions but get it that I need to rest and recuperate either condition;
  7. That my sons shun from stigmatizing anyone be it in our extended family or not, who may be struggling with any condition be it physical or mental;
  8. That any friends am making henceforth know like the few I still have that I have both a physical and mental illness, that am not defined by any of them, but that I don’t tolerate any stigma of my person nor of any person living with either illness or health conditions;
  9. That I always remember to be grateful for all I have lived and currently live, and especially that I didn’t commit suicide as attempted February 2009 when I thought that was the best solution to my then miserable existence…

  I have but 9 wishes, because the other 30 slot years of my life have oh been so graciously filled with so much to be grateful for… It is only getting better and I thank my angels and Guardian Angel for my family and my dear ‘e-family’ from whom I have learned so much and with whom I share so much.

P.s: The irony this year is, I wrote this post on Monday 15th and had an RA flareup on Tuesday 16th and was bed grounded on Wednesday 17th January. The get well soon messages on different mediums made me reflect if I had blogged about suffering a mental meltdown.

Anyways; Here is a recap of some of  my previous birthday posts since the great redemption. I was born on a Thursday too so it feels special special lol 

2015 Year of Redemption;

2016 Year of Love (was sick and on a 3 weeks blogging break-although I got a surprise birthday cake from the host of a TV Show I was guest on – that was so touching) 37th-birthday ;

2017 year of Gratitude

My birthday Vlog of that very painful 2014 (When I lost my only brother Gabriel and near lost all my mind) still holds today. Hope the message resonates

Advocating for my son and students all the way …


wp-image-125500887
My special friend and deputy CEO of In Our Home Inc

Hello World, that is my first son Alain (for those just hopping on my blog). He turned 14 years last october 8th and we went to a Chinese Buffet for a first time – they  (all 3 boys I have) had a great time.

Now, Alain is in form 3, I guess middle high in the US or so. Recently, when writing about experiences I had in his brother’s school with two teachers, I also mentionned some I had in his own school over some grade scores he had been removed for some reason I couldn’t understand. He is a very hardworking student, has always been on honour’s roll since primary school and takes a lot of pride in his performance – of course I do too although I try to make him not put so much pressure on himself. One of his teachers gave him a 2/8 in a question because he forgot an element, and yet his friend who gave same illustration forgetting same element got a 6/8. When he went up to ask the teacher showing his friend’s paper, his two marks were substracted and added to this friend’s.

Of course I marched to that school the next day and spoke with the proprietor and dean of studies. I was assured the grades will be reviewed. Ha same afternoon, he comes back home with another paper taught by the same teacher where he gets 3 answers marked wrong which I know are correct. I am getting itchy and go back to the school the next day. The teacher whom I don’t see, had told the dean the previous day Alain was rude in his approach to asking about his paper, and he left out some words (critical to a complete answer it sems) and actually …… I left the new paper and requested for a meeting with this teacher and the dean.

The meeting was arranged for last friday at 7.30 am and I was there of course 15 minutes ahead. I explained the situation again, said my concern was in teacher/student relationship which appeared to still be one of ‘teacher knows it all’ (Alain told me he was adviced by the dean to stop ‘challenging’ his teachers). I said at home I didn’t know it all and we ran the home as a team and I told them I was sorry when at fault. The teacher gave his own explanations; and well all is well that ends well.

Some relationship dynamics have changed over the past century and one of these is students/lectuers or teacher etc. Back home, it may still be a big challenge finding a balance and even letting parents in (in his school PTA’s are once a year only – imagine that) and hmm some parents simply don’t even want to know or be involved anyway.

I therefore advocate that students/pupils be let to express themselves and taught from a young age how to do so politely  (I however doubt Alain was rude – teacher may just have been embarassed he even came up to him in class and brought along a friend’s paper and well in our schools you may not see a teacher after class hours because they teach and go unless they have another class after a while and you are also out of class you know). Students also get a bost by their parents’ involvment and their teachers taking them as human beings and not just people to be taught sort of.

Finally, Alain got his marks reinstated and got good grades overall for this first sequence (he feels slighted he was second in class -but that’s ok by me).

Sharing to inspire parents and advocates, it ain’t easy but often it is worth it.

Have a nice week us all