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The fight for mental health

Why our very own Head of Digital is doing a charity MMA fight for mental health charity, MIND.

Over Christmas our Head of Digital, Aaron signed up for the Ultra MMA Brighton on 24th March at Pryzm Nightclub. An event that's entirely out of his typical comfort zone, he was inspired to take part to raise money and awareness for mental health charity MIND, following both his own experiences as well as observing those of people around him, finding the right support for mental health challenges. As a team, we're incredibly proud of him and will be ringside supporting him every step of the way... nonetheless, we did feel the need to ask... why? Here he explains why he was inspired to step into the ring in the fight for mental health.

A personal challenge

"Why? Why not? There are two reasons I wanted to take part really. The first is that it's a personal challenge and the second is the charity aspect.

With MMA I'm completely out of my depth. I'm not the most physical person and I'm definitely not a fighter. I spend all my time by a computer analysing data and when I thought about it I thought why not do a physical and mental challenge that's totally different for me?

Supporting individual mental health

The other side is the charity aspect - raising money for MIND. MIND supports peoples' mental health and mental health is something that's easy to underestimate and not talk about. It's something that according to statistics one in four people suffer with. I've had problems in my past, not so much any more thankfully, but a lot of people close to me have struggled and still do.

Men's mental health

Within that is men's mental health. MIND supports everyone but when I had my own issues I found that the system in the UK really came with a one size fits all approach. Some advice I was given really wasn't good for me in my situation but might suit other people in theirs. Because the system that we have doesn't support mental health in a way I think it needs, we have to rely on other establishments such as charities like MIND to step in and fill the gap.

Personal experiences with mental wellbeing

I think mental health and mental health support is deeply individual. There isn't one way to do it - each person is different and responds to things differently. Also, the reason for someone's mental health problems can vary enormously and that will have an impact on what responses are best for them.

I struggled with depression in my late teens and early twenties and it was really because of the situation I was in at the time. The system I was placed in focused a lot on looking for a single, traumatic event that might have caused my depression, but that wasn't really my circumstance. What helped me was incidentally finding someone who helped me to look forward, understand what I wanted and put steps in place to achieve it. For someone else however, there may be a specific event that needs to be addressed. It's personal."

If you're inspired to support Aaron you can sponsor him on the JustGiving link below, and don't forget to come and join us on 24th March at Pryzm Nightclub. Don’t forget to put Aaron’s name in the ‘who are you here to watch’ section when booking!

Sponsor Aaron

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