My Mental Health Routines and Tools (Includes Extensive Resources)

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Today, October 10th, is World Mental Health Day.

Highlighting mental health is important to me for deeply personal reasons. Treatment-resistant depression, bipolar disorder, and addiction run in my family. I’ve lost multiple friends to suicide and almost committed suicide in college. Opioids and alcohol have claimed the lives of family members and some of my closest childhood friends.

But despair need not lead to deaths of despair.

This blog post compiles resources that have helped me and millions of readers. They include books, documentaries, podcast episodes, videos, and much more. 

Below are the three resources that have received the most positive feedback. Each is intended to be highly practical and tactical:

  1. Blog post: Some Practical Thoughts on Suicide
  2. Podcast episode: My Healing Journey After Childhood Abuse.
  3. Blog post: “Productivity” Tricks for the Neurotic, Manic-Depressive, and Crazy (Like Me).

If pressed for time, the below short video describes some of my daily practices for warding off and managing depression: 

And if you remember only one thing, remember this: there is light on the other side. 

I wouldn’t have believed this even 15 years ago, but I now consider myself living proof that deep, lasting change is possible. You are never alone, and it is never hopeless. The resources below the P.S. and P.P.S. are intended to light the fire of hope.

Don’t give up. I’m right there alongside you, as are millions of others.

Much love to you and yours, 

Tim

P.S.

In 2018, I created the Saisei Foundation to focus on ambitious scientific research and cutting-edge clinical treatments of intractable conditions, including treatment-resistant depression, opioid addiction, anorexia nervosa, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Projects have been published in leading journals (e.g., The Lancet, NEJM) and featured in media coverage (The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, GQ, and dozens more) around the world. Click here to learn more about the foundation and its mission.

P.P.S.

Crisis
If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org. Crisis Text Line: text “HOME” to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor for free, 24/7 support. 

Suicide
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Beginning July 16, 2022, dialing 988 will also route calls to the lifeline. If you’re outside of the US, please click here for a list of international hotlines.


The below list of resources includes podcast episodes, books, documentaries, and more.  

VIDEOS ON MY YOUTUBE CHANNEL

THE TIM FERRISS SHOW PODCAST EPISODES

Jack Kornfield — Finding Freedom, Love, and Joy in the Present | The Tim Ferriss Show #300
Jim Dethmer — How to Shift from Victim Consciousness, Reduce Drama, Practice Candor, Be Fully Alive, and More | The Tim Ferriss Show #434
Chris Palmer, MD, of Harvard Medical School — Optimizing Brain Energy for Mental Health, The Incredible Potential of Metabolic Psychiatry, Extraordinary Case Studies, and Harnessing Mitochondria for Anxiety, Depression, OCD, PTSD, and More | The Tim Ferriss Show #633
Tara Brach on Meditation and Overcoming FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) | The Tim Ferriss Show #94
How to Design a Life — Debbie Millman | The Tim Ferriss Show #214
Dr. Gabor Maté — New Paradigms, Ayahuasca, and Redefining Addiction | The Tim Ferriss Show #298
Paul Conti, MD — How Trauma Works and How to Heal from It | The Tim Ferriss Show #533
Richard Schwartz — IFS, Psychedelic Experiences without Drugs, and Finding Inner Peace for Our Many Parts | The Tim Ferriss Show #492
Overview of Psychedelic Fact vs. Fiction — Microdosing, Mind-Enhancing Methods, and More | The Tim Ferriss Show #377
Blake Mycoskie — Psychedelic Sequencing, TOMS, The Hoffman Process, and Conscious Uncoupling | The Tim Ferriss Show #446
Michael Pollan — Exploring the Frontiers of Psychedelics | The Tim Ferriss Show #365
Sam Harris, Ph.D. — How to Master Your Mind | The Tim Ferriss Show #342
Dr. Gabor Maté — The Myth of Normal, Metabolizing Anger, Processing Trauma, and Finding the Still Voice Within | The Tim Ferriss Show #620
Nick Norris — Navy SEAL and Athlete on Training, Post-Traumatic Growth, and Healing | The Tim Ferriss Show #378
Dr. John Krystal — All Things Ketamine, The Most Comprehensive Podcast Episode Ever | The Tim Ferriss Show #625

BOOKS AND SUGGESTED READING

Radical Acceptance: Embracing Your Life with the Heart of a Buddha by Tara Brach
Awareness by Anthony de Mello
The Quick-Start Guide to Healing Trauma and Psychological Wounds” by Neil Strauss (article)
Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma by Peter A. Levine with Ann Frederick
The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk
How to Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan
The Healing Journey: Pioneering Approaches to Psychedelic Therapy by Claudio Naranjo
The Drama of the Gifted Child: The Search for the True Self by Alice Miller
The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse by Ellen Bass and Laura Davis
The Courage to Heal Workbook: For Women and Men Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse by Laura Davis
The Complete Enneagram: 27 Paths to Greater Self-Knowledge by Beatrice Chestnut
Trauma: The Invisible Epidemic—How Trauma Works and How We Can Heal From It by Paul Conti, MD

DOCUMENTARIES

Trip of Compassion. This documentary affected me so deeply (and immediately) when I first saw it that I flew to Tel Aviv, met the filmmakers, and offered to help launch the film digitally worldwide. Everything I’ve done for this film is 100% pro bono, and all proceeds go to the filmmakers.

The Work. This documentary tore my heart apart but simultaneously gave me tremendous hope. It strikes me as particularly important for men (or those who want to better understand men) to watch, but the intensity isn’t for everyone. It’s exhausting to watch. 

How to Change Your Mind (Netflix mini-series). “Author Michael Pollan leads the way in this docuseries exploring the history and uses of psychedelics, including LSD, psilocybin, MDMA and mescaline.”

DOSED. It’s one of the best and most beautifully shot docs I’ve ever seen about psychedelic medicine. It showcases the struggles, misfires, and successes in the concrete jungles near Vancouver instead of in an Amazonian jungle. For me, it was quite emotional, as it shows opioid/opiate addiction firsthand, and my aunt died of a Percocet and alcohol overdose close to when I first watched this documentary.  

From Shock to Awe. If you like Trip of Compassion, or if you have an interest in psychedelics, ayahuasca, veteran affairs, or healing, take a look at this documentary. I’ve watched it 3x already and highly recommend it. Even if you don’t watch the film, the two-minute trailer is worth checking out.

RESOURCES, ORGANIZATIONS, AND TOOLS

Dialectical behavior therapy | Wikipedia
The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook: Practical DBT Exercises | Amazon
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) | Peter Attia, MD 
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) | Mayo Clinic
How Somatic Experiencing Can Help You Process Trauma | Healthline
What is Internal Family Systems? | IFS Institute
Parts Work Therapy for Complex PTSD | Dr. Arielle Schwartz
Hakomi Method | Hakomi Institute
Imago Relationships
The Waking Up app
Dissociation and Dissociative Disorders | Mental Health America
Dissociation FAQs | The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation
The Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research | Johns Hopkins
Centre for Psychedelic Research | Imperial College London
The Conscious Leadership Group
The Enneagram Institute
The Center for Nonviolent Communication
Paradigms of Ketamine Treatment | MAPS
Psychedelic Science: Magic Mushrooms | MAPS
MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy | MAPS
Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy (Resources) | tim.blog
About Holotropic Breathwork | Grof Transpersonal Training
What is the Hoffman Process? | Hoffman Institute Foundation

SUPPORT LINES:
Crisis
If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org
Crisis Text Line text “HOME” to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor for free, 24/7 support. 

Suicide
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Beginning July 16, 2022, dialing 988 will also route calls to the lifeline.

Violence, Abuse, and Sexual Abuse
National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-7233 or text LOVEIS to 22522
National Sexual Assault Hotline 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or Online Chat
National Sexual Violence Resource Center

Children
National Child Abuse Hotline 1-800-4AChild (1-800-422-4453) or text 1-800-422-4453
Child Welfare Information Gateway 


If you have tips, advice, or resources that have helped you, please share them in the comments below. 

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for “Best of Apple Podcasts” three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it’s been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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