Mental health is just as important as physical health, by opening up and talking about mental health we can all play our part in removing the stigma. This World Mental Health Day we caught up with Callum Woods from Destination Judo to hear about his journey with his mental health.

You talk so openly about your struggles with mental health, for those that don’t know you can you share a bit of background about your story?

“For nearly 10 years I was on Anti-depressants. However, I continue to cycle around what is known as the depression cycle. Feeling good, then feeling depressed again.”

“One day I was lying on the sofa feeling so low. I looked over at my 3 children sitting on the other sofa and realised that I was there in body but never in mind. In that moment I realised that we save ourselves, but there is nothing wrong with asking for help along the way.”

“I got curious about how the mind works, I hired a mindset coach and Personal trainer, and I also enrolled in a transformational life coaching course.”

“I heavily invested in myself not just with money but with time and energy to create the best version of myself.”

“One year ago, I stopped taking Antidepressants which I’m very proud of myself for achieving.”

From your point of view, why is it important to talk about mental health?

“Depression especially has a way of making you feel isolated and alone. Hopefully, when speaking about mental health others hear something that is relatable to them. I genuinely hope it allows others to start talking too.”

What is your ‘tool kit’ for managing your mental health? (e.g. exercise, socialising etc)

“I do a few things. Nutrition and exercise are my main tools. I also continue to be mindset coached on different aspects of my life. Now and again, I will do some meditation and the dreaded cold-water dips.”

What advice would you give to your younger self around mental health?

“My advice would be to work on my wealth, health, and happiness, but do it in reverse order.”

If you have been affected by anything in this article or are looking for help and advice around mental health contact SAMH , The Mental Health Foundation Scotland or your GP.

If you would like to read more about Callum’s story click here.