Friends and award-winning podcast hosts Deborah James and Lauren Mahon kick off Happiful and Counselling Directory’s Podfest For Mental Health, a week-long programme of podcasts recorded to mark Mental Health Awareness Week (13-19 May)
Co-hosts of Radio 5 Live’s You, Me and The Big C Deborah James and Lauren Mahon joined Happiful’s podcast I am. I have to talk about mental health and their experiences of living with cancer, feelings of overwhelm, health anxiety, grief after the death of their great friend and podcast founder Racheal Bland, and learning to live in their new normals.
In the style that so many love the You, Me and The Big C team for, their interview is also full of laughter, real talk and lessons they have learned along the way.
During the recording, Lauren shared that she often feels overwhelmed by everything she feels needs to be done, and struggles with guilt around being “good enough” and being able to do all that she “should”. The conversation that followed explored banning the word ‘should’, why self care can be a pressure in itself and how a glass of wine with a mate at the end of the week can be exactly what is needed.
Both Deborah and Lauren spoke of their coping mechanisms in response to having cancer, noting that they both keep themselves busy to move forward. “People say 'how do you do all that stuff' and what they don’t understand is that for me, stopping is the worst thing I can do,” Deborah explains, sharing that she enjoys forward momentum and challenging herself.
In addition to their busy lives, jobs and podcasting, their relationship is massive support when it comes to the overwhelm that can be present for them both. Speaking of this, Deborah said: “One of the things that I think is a massive coping mechanism for the two of us is firstly the fact that we have a great friendship but we do talk about it (cancer) a lot. Pretty much most days we’ll speak and I think that in itself gets us though and I’m only just starting to realise the importance of that.”
Listen to I am. I have with Deborah James and Lauren Mahon now and subscribe to I am. I have to receive two additional Podfest For Mental Health interviews on Thursday (Book of Man) and Friday (I am. I have - The Panel) this week.
Tomorrow’s Podfest For Mental Health episode comes from The Naked Professors and Jordan Stephens - subscribe to have it delivered to your preferred device.
To find a professional counsellor or therapist, visit Counselling Directory or use the search box below.
If you are in need of immediate mental health support, you can call The Samaritans 24-hours a day on 116 123 or email firstname.lastname@example.org