Blog For Mental Health 2014

ATTENTION PLEASE!  AFTER YOU READ THROUGH THIS POST, PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS PAGE ON THE OFFICIAL BLOG FOR MENTAL HEALTH PROJECT SITE.  ALSO, PLEASE HAVE A LOOK AT OUR TAKE THE PLEDGE PAGE FOR MORE DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS, SHOULD YOU NEED THEM.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, friends in the blogging world and outside of it, the time has come.  So sit down, squat down, or lie down, but make yourselves at home.  Because it’s time at last for. . .

art by Piper Macenzie

art by Piper Macenzie

Are you as excited as I am?  I don’t think anyone could be, but please humor me and try to give a good imitation.  ;)

Now, for those who are new to this, Blog For Mental Health was a project dreamed up by none other than Canvas co-founder Lulu three years ago, which she launched through her personal blog in 2012.  She was gracious enough to let us continue the tradition last year here on Canvas, and all I can say is wow.  The response was thrilling, and I was still fielding questions about it well into November of 2013.

As I said, last year was a thrill.  It was also an enormous learning curve for me.  I got a great deal of feedback from many of you on what worked and what didn’t, not to mention what I discovered through my own role coordinating.  So this year, you’ll notice some important changes.

I shared the long-form explanation of changes made in my most recent post.  You can also find this info on our newly created About Blog For Mental Health page.

Now we get down to the real live Blog For Mental Health 2014 pledge!

Blog For Mental Health 2014

I know you’re all burning up from wanting to know how you can be involved in the 2014 project!  Directions are as follows:

First, all you need to do is write a post.  It’s that simple.  The post should include the following:

The original words from the founder herself, which clearly have stood the test of time and need absolutely no modification outside of the year.  ;)

“I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2014 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.”  

There is no requisite number of posts you need to make in the year to “qualify”.  As many of your words and as much of your time as you can contribute, it’s enough.  A little can go a very long way in the fight to raise awareness, educate, show support, and eradicate stigma.

Also, as referenced in the pledge, the post should include the Blog For Mental Health 2014 badge (as seen above).  You are also encouraged to display this badge on your blog all year, like we’ve done in the sidebar (image URL for your WordPress widget is http://acanvasoftheminds.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/bfmh14-copy-e1388959797718.jpg).

Please include in your post as little or as much as you would like about your experiences with mental health.  This can be your own story, the impact of a loved one’s struggles, perhaps something you read or saw that really woke you up to the importance of addressing mental health.  Anything that has truly impacted you matters.  Essentially, we want to know what has drawn you to become a part of the Blog For Mental Health campaign.

Finally, please include a link back to this post, here, on Canvas.  This helps more and more bloggers to become informed about Blog For Mental Health, and to make a choice to get involved (or not) — without the pressure many have felt when we have asked them to pledge others.

Now.  I am going to be completely honest with you for a moment.  The way the pledging process was set up last year was confusing for a lot of you and straight up chaotic for me.  Of course I set it up, so it’s all on me as well.  But this year I’ve made a real change to make things easier!

So, once you have written your post, email the link to your specific Blog For Mental Health post  to blogformentalhealth@gmail.com (just a link to your site itself is not what I need).  I am the only one with access to the account, in case you have privacy concerns.

If you like, include social media you are on (your Twitter handle, the URL of a facebook page for your blog [not your personal account], a link to your Google+ profile) that you would like connected with your post, if any.

I will then add your post to Canvas’ Blog For Mental Health 2014 Official Blogroll page.  In addition, your post will be shared through our Social Media.

I do have to put in a disclaimer here.  There has been enormous growth in the number of spam and ad sites recently.  While I want awareness, I reserve the right to challenge and/or refuse any piece I suspect of being fraudulent or from a site primarily for monetary gain.  Regular people, don’t worry.  ;)

With that out of the way, a final note from Lulu, from a comment on this year’s prologue post:

“I am elated that this all came to fruition, and it is thriving. Thank you to everyone who has participated in the past and to those who plan on participating in the future.”

It felt just perfect to me to have her benediction before we began.

I am incredibly excited about this, loves!  Last year really was an amazing one for this project, and for me personally, reading all of your posts.  I cannot wait to see what 2014 brings.

Show the world our strength, show them our solidarity, show them what we are made of.  Take the Blog for Mental Health pledge and proudly display the badge on your blog!

Relevant Reads: 
About Blog For Mental Health – A Canvas Of The Minds
Blog For Mental Health 2014: Unplanned Teaser Post – A Canvas Of The Minds
Blog For Mental Health 2014: The Prologue – A Canvas Of The Minds
Blog For Mental Health 2013 – A Canvas Of The Minds
Blog for Mental Health 2012 – Sunny With a Chance Of Armageddon

IMPORTANT NOTE: The response to Blog For Mental Health 2014 has been so tremendous that a separate blog has actually been created to handle it. You can read a post on the subject here, and then actually visit The Official Blog For Mental Health Project to see what it’s all about!

© Ruby Tuesday and A Canvas Of The Minds 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ruby Tuesday and A Canvas Of The Minds with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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122 thoughts on “Blog For Mental Health 2014

  1. Ruby,
    I’m so excited. I’m actually looking forward to being more proactive in the social media realm and sharing the Canvas posts through my fb page as well. Sharing and spreading the word this year is my additional commitment.

    Pledge post pending.

    Blessings,
    Kina

    • Kina, thank you so very much! I saw that you had shared it through your fb page, and I am tremendously grateful. Not being on any social media myself anymore (unless you count the odd tweet here and there), outside of the Canvas accounts, I am so appreciative of those like you who take it upon themselves to help spread the word! Thanks loads for the reblog as well.

      Can’t wait to see your pledge post! :D

    • Lol, by the time you made this comment I was already knocked out and asleep! I’m so excited to have your involvement again (whenever you get to it, no rush)! ;)

    • Jared, thank you! I will pass your words along to Ms. Macenzie, who was an absolute doll to donate her time and her passion. I know she’ll be delighted it’s being well received. :)

    • I’m excited to have you on board! You only have to write one “official” post to go on the blogroll (the post which I outlined above), but of course the more you want to discuss mental health, the better! :)

  2. Happy 2014 Ruby my friend. I just pounded “Publish” on my BFMH2014 post – with a pledge of my own to live up to the official pledge better this year…

    • Yipes! Don’t pound too hard or you won’t have the technology to keep up with it! But I do appreciate your enthusiasm. ;)

      BTW, could you email me the link at blogformentalhealth@gmail.com? This way I can get you added to the blogroll, but still have a “placeholder” for your post when I start sharing them out on social media. Which will be soon.

        • Thanks, Sid. I should have put a note in the launch post that even those I follow and good friends like you still need to email. I read the posts, and I go all yay and hooray inside, but I have no flipping way to keep track of whom I have added and shared and the pingbacks are going crazy which is great — but I don’t want to!

          So, yeah. Thank you. :D

            • Well, you are special, Sid! I was more thinking aloud to myself as the pledges have come pouring in. . . The last thing I would want would be to forget and not share out the post of a friend!

    • Oh gosh, I wish! No, Rachel, the very talented young (local Denver, CO) artist Piper Macenzie was kind enough to donate her time and her gift to this cause.

      I know she’ll be delighted by your words, so I’ll pass them along and say a big “Thank you!” on her behalf. :)

    • I am so stoked that you are! It’s so exciting for me to meet new faces like yours, as well as seeing those bloggers I’ve known for some time. Cannot wait to read your post!

  3. I am so glad to have found this. Pledge post to come soon…thank you for providing this space and network for all of us to support and help each other.

    • Wow. Your comment is so incredibly humbling. . . I kind of just feel like I do what I do and I’m so glad if it helps, but for you to actually put that into your words is incredibly precious. Thank you. I’m looking forward to your post.

      • I mean I could do the minimal but that reeks and it’s not my style either. So I will have to wait for the muse to knock me over. Probably sooner than later. But big doin’s in the domestic scene, me holding everything together when I’d rather be doing cryptoscience…um, it’s really hard to stay focused. The meds keep me pleasantly in la-la land, insulated from most fiery blasts…kitchen science takes care of the rest, and my brain is floating around in the land of Hebrew cosmology, enjoying this little high spell. Got a whiff of a low this afternoon….Oh no!!! That I cannot stand. So, soon you shall have the right recipe on the floating page, and I will proudly add the rainbow design to my already proudly crowded wall. Be well, dear one.

        • Laura, I wait with bated breath. I know when it comes together, it will be magic. Meantime, you do what makes you happiest at the moment, and if you want to fill me in on the domestic stuff, you have my email. Be well yourself, dear friend. ♥

  4. Very interested in posting for this as 2013 I was so challenged with this ….awareness needs to be brought to Mental Health in our world! Working on post!

  5. I love this idea SO MUCH. I’ve written my first post and sent an email with the link. I’m looking forward to checking out all the blogs on the blogroll. Thanks for hosting this.

    • Thank you for taking part. I love your enthusiasm! I got your email and have added you to the blogroll, the social media sharing will take a bit of time as there are so many posts already, but you’re on our BFMH 2014 Pinterest board, too. Happy reading, there are tons of wonderful pieces on the blogroll. :)

  6. Whoo-hoo *wiggly bum dance* Glad to be a part of it once again for 2014 – to be surrounded and immersed with fellow talented, inspiration and amazing people who are deliciously brilliant in their own magnificent way – well – how could I not want to take part. Well done to you once again Ms Tuesday! It’s been an honor and a privilege! Catch you on the flipside! xox

    • Lovely Maree, I am delighted that you are so delighted to be a part of this. You’re right, it is an amazing group, and it suits you in your amazing-ness perfectly!

      Keep well. xo

  7. PROUD to help fight STIGMA of Mental & Emotional illness and disorders! It’s time to shatter the stigma around those who suffer from Mental illness and those in recovery from addictions as well. Two of my disorders are a direct link to my past addiction that I’ve been in recovery from over 7 years, “Panic with Agoraphobia. I also suffer Bipolar with manic depression. It’s time to talk about mental illness.
    Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon

        • I’m just so happy that you found us. Should have you set on the blogroll before days’ end, post sharing will take longer (I’m doing them chronologically as I received them), but I’m on it!

          • I’m happy too. :D You’ve got your work cut out for you. I just checked the tag “Blog for Mental Health 2014″ & set it in my Reader – there are a TON of us.
            I know that has to make you smile, though.

            • There are a ton, and it really does make me so happy! I just wish everyone was emailing me post links, because I know I am missing quite a few. I’m doing everything I can to try to track them, but I can only do so much, you know? That’s why I set up the email address this year.

              I think in a few weeks I may enlist the help of all the wonderful bloggers like you who have become involved to help me track down the missing bloggers. ;)

            • Aw, you’re so sweet, thank you! It’s more a matter of needing posts emailed so I can keep track of them for sharing as well as the blogroll. I can track the tag, and I can bookmark posts, and I can follow trackbacks that are coming into Canvas, and I have a search saved on Twitter, and another just for results popping up on Google. . . but at a certain point it just feels like my brain is about to explode trying to tie all of those pieces together and check them against the blogroll, and against what has been shared out. . . Not to mention looking at our BFMH 2014 Pinterest board today it somehow seems as though half of our pins have disappeared. . . That last thing I’m not even going to think about until tomorrow (à la Scarlett O’Hara). ;)

              I guess my point is I’m doing my best, but I have to admit that there is only one of me and it becomes a logistical nightmare. My point in creating the email address this year was to cut down on what I ran into in that vein last year, and while I do think I’ve cut it down, there’s always going to be an element of it.

              In any case, there’s more to come this year with BFMH, so maybe when that post goes out, the lovely bloggers like you who are so kind and helpful can check the blogroll against other blogs/posts you may see which aren’t listed, and we can all sort of come together somewhere. . .

            • You are just so incredibly adorably wonderfully sweet! Thank you. Even if you don’t dream up anything, I still thank you from the bottom of my heart for wanting to help!

            • I have two things that may be of some help. (Until I can dream up some more.)
              There is a site that we use on Bloggers for Peace for each month’s prompt.
              The site is called inlinkz.
              http://www.inlinkz.com/ What it basically does is you give your readers a link to the link collection. Then, they can each leave their username and a link to their post. Then it creates a neat little web that everyone can click away on.
              If you want to see it in action: I can e-mail you one of our last prompts.

              The second idea would be, maybe you can add a page here specially for people’s pings & tell them to link to it for each BFMH 2014 post.

              Hope this helps somewhat. & P.S. Congrats on the feature! I just saw!

            • Thank you so much for the thought, I actually have a general idea of what you’re talking about, as one of my good blogger friends co-hosts a weekly themed “blog-hop”. What she does sounds similar, if not the same thing altogether, which it just may be.

              It’s a great idea, the difficulty lies in grabbing everyone’s attention and getting them to be actively involved somehow. Last year pledges were made in the form of comments, this year the email system is better, but it all comes down to bloggers either not knowing about or just not taking a moment to get that final step of notification in place.

              Unfortunately, I simply haven’t time to run down all of the pings and things coming through other search results. I mean, you’ve seen the blogroll, and those are all people from whom I did receive email links. :)

              Maybe after things settle a bit, if they settle! Meantime I am trying to keep a list of the leads I have, and I do intend on reaching out in a post at some point, asking for help from our readers.

              You were absolutely lovely to try to think of something, and I do really appreciate it, from the bottom of my heart. And thanks for your congratulations. That was certainly a huge surprise to me! :)

            • You’re doing a great job even though it’s tough. :D The site looks wonderful & SO many have hopped on board I see. I think once the dust settles it will be a hugely positive thing.

              I say post a big huge badge with your email. lol Sometimes you have to put it right in people’s faces for certain ones to pay attention.

            • Part of the problem is just inherent in things like this, too. You know, one blogger posts it, others see it and pass it along without necessarily reading through all of the original instructions, bits and pieces get lost. Only so much can be done about that. :)

              And thank you again for your kind words! I don’t mean for it to sound like it’s oh-so-rough, it isn’t, I just don’t want to miss out on bloggers who have pledged and I know that, unfortunately, I am.

    • I can’t tell you how delighted I am that you have found us! I will be more than grateful for your participation, the responses to this have truly filled my heart and boggled my mind!

  8. Yes. Yes. This looks good. Found you on the WordPress blog. I do need to be a lot more serious about my blog and I’ve been looking for other anon bloggers battling with their experiences. Looking forward to diving in.

    • I’m very excited you found something valuable here. We have a mix of bloggers, some who write anonymously/under a pseudonym, some who write using their real names, and some who fall in the middle of the two choices. So we understand completely your desire to remain anonymous and value very much the experiences you choose to share.

      Cannot wait to read more from you!

  9. I am super stoked for this challenge!!! I am no doubt going to join up and do this, for it’s a part of what I wanted to do anyway so why not?! :-D I’ve personally been there myself, and I know the nasty stigma that comes with it. I can’t wait to get it out there that it’s NOT a bad thing, we AREN’T crazy and darn it, we’re NORMAL just like everyone else.
    :-D Awwwweeessooommmeee the badge is rainbow too?! Oh my goodness it’s like God said ‘Go find your rainbow THERE!’ :-D I LOOOVVVEEE RAINBOWS! Not as much as I love Snoopy, but SUPER CLOSE!

  10. I will be participating.. I’m not sure just yet when I’ll post but in the not too distant future…. I’ll keep the instructions handy so I do it the right way… I put the badge up when I post right.. (if I can remember how to get it on my side-bar) I haven’t done one for awhile…. Diane

    • Hi Diane, I’m glad you want to join in. I can’t wait to read your pledge (when you’re ready), so don’t forget to email it. Also, there is a page that will soon go live that should help some with the badge.

      Take care!

  11. How exciting is this? I keep ‘meaning to get to’ that post which specifically deals with my illness – as opposed to the 60 which talk around it. Now, I have impetus – thanks for the push :-) I will try to do it this week!

    • There is no hard and fast deadline, so don’t fret. But I am very glad this can be something positive for you, something that impels you to write about things directly. :)

  12. I’m a tad confused…can I create a category on my page for this specifically? Do you want every post that we write to be emailed to you first so you can approve it? Where does the pledge go exactly? I’m new to blogging, please bear with me, but I’m super pumped for this!

    • You can create a category if you like, it’s convenient, though by no means any kind of requirement. As for the posts you email, I don’t approve them in any way. There is more information to come later today, but I only ask that you email them so I have a way of keeping track and sharing them out. You post to your blog in the way you feel most comfortable, I never want to change that space or your words or your voice. Then email the links to me after.

      The pledge really only needs to go in your “pledge post” — that is, the first one you write, though I have seen it here and there in a few sidebars. More commonly, the badge is just displayed in the sidebar, as you have done.

      I just checked the email and looked at your pledge post and it’s fine. If you could add the link to this post, so others know how to participate, that would be wonderful.

      I hope that clears up any confusion, if not, let me know. As I said, there’s a post going live here later today that will hopefully help. Look out for it, it’s definitely a pretty big deal as far as the future of Blog For Mental Health!

      I’m really thrilled that you are so pumped! And I ask in turn that you bear with me as well. I’m overwhelmed (in a good way) with the response this year, and I’m trying to make sure everything is done the best way I can manage it!

  13. Good morning. I’d like to participate. Do I get a badge before or after writing a post?

  14. This is awesome! I will be adding a post tomorrow on the Stigma of Mental Health in the Black Community! I will be sure to email you the link once it comes out or you can look for it tomorrow… I also plan to add the badge to my new and repost blogs on mental health!

  15. I am so happy to have found this post! I will take the pledge and include it in my next post about my OCD. My blog is not dedicated just to my mental illness, but I do talk about it regularly. I will happily put a badge on any and all mental health posts that I do. I send a link when it’s posted! Thanks!!!

    • I’m very happy that you did find it, and look forward to your email and reading your pledge! Your blog doesn’t have to be exclusively about mental illness, after all, there is so much more to everyone’s life.

      Feel free to email links to further posts throughout the year as well!

  16. Ok, my pledge post is now up. Would be much appreciated if you could add me to the blogroll when convenient :)

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