Bring on the New Normal With a CONTENT MIND and real mental health awareness

Katja Brunkhorst October 7, 2022

collect and devour female autobiographies. (Yes, absolutely put that down in your calendar as an x-mas gift to me!) But besides all my beloved memoirs by womxn, the only two men I have still been reading those last seven years or so are John Green and Matt Haig.

And that’s not a coincidence. I found, by following them on social media and after reading their books, that they are very, very open about their mental health issues. I personally lost two of my friends in my life to suicide. Men in particular are vulnerable to that.

matt haig john green

And it’s the ones who are struggling, or openly admitting to it, that I often like the best. I dig those who feel deeply, who think too much. Who experience everything very intensively. And also the perfectionists and those who have to carry their baggage in life. I think that there are very few really empathic and really creative people who had a happy childhood.

I think you have to learn it the hard way, unfortunately.

Nevertheless, we still have to normalize that there is no such thing as normal. And we have to make it easier – and that’s a political thing – we have to make it easier to get help when you really, really need that help. I live in Germany and I’m grateful for that: there is a great health care system here, which catches you if you fall. I know of other countries where it’s much harder to get a therapist or a place in a clinic.

hand onheart

Mental health awareness and suicide prevention are issues that are very close to my heart. Not just from the painful experience of loss, but also because I myself have struggled with my mental health most of my life. Unfortunately, I can’t take it for granted that I always function and I know how healing it is to know people where you are always welcome, no matter how you’re feeling. Where you don’t have to wear a mask, where you can call and say: Hey, it’s all inky black right now. It will never get better.

And who then tell you:

Take a deep breath, tomorrow is a new day

or who just come around and say:

Here, put on the kettle for tea and I’ll bring hugs, tissues, two open ears and a huge tub of ice cream.

Yeah, let’s make empathy and mindfulness great again! Let’s all give a care more often. Hey you, yes, YOU: why not simply get in touch with someone you haven’t spoken to in too long, right now? Without fear. Just say:

I’m reaching out, I know it’s been a while but life, ya know. How are you? I am here for you.

Maybe you are saving their life. The thing is, we just don’t know.

And especially in our success-driven society, with the enormous pressure to perform, with the constant comparison on social media, especially on social media. Social media is poison for mental health and yet we all need it, especially in the online biz space.

So how can I maybe make my social media behavior a little less toxic? More controlled? Use it, rather than be used by it and feeding the algo with my mindless scrolling while wasting the precious time I have left on this crazy beautiful but oh so fragile blue planet? And maybe even say:

I’m not feeling well right now, I just don’t want that for a couple of weeks.

The world will not come to an end. Nope. Not even for female entrepreneurs! And not so surprisingly, self-care – sports, being outdoors, hanging with friends, eating yummy food – and just sitting with yourself in general are also great for creativity and for so-called content.


And here, I’ve arrived again at one of my favorite pieces of wordplay (heck, one day it WILL become a program I run!):

Only a CONTENT MIND is a mind that can create content.

And not just any content. Content has already become a dirty word, to me at least. Hasn’t it to you, too? It sounds like such a filler designed to keep us numb and scrolling, like white noise or elevator muzak.

Maybe we should create less content, but truly creative, authentic, raw and important communication, from heart to heart, that helps, that makes people less lonely, that is also fun at times and may totally make you chuckle, that informs, that simply, to borrow from Spinal Tap:

Turns the light up to eleven. Not the volume!

Are you in?

And if you’re struggling, please seek professional help and/or call a friend or, seriously, me. I’ll listen.


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