Natasha Devon - I am. I have
Activist, Author and Mental Health Advocate Natasha Devon Shares Her Three I am’s and one I have on Happiful and Counselling Directory's podcast
Natasha Devon joined I am. I have to share her thoughts on activism, working in schools with young people (“the best job in the universe”), education, Brexit and the personal projects she wants to prioritise in 2019.
Tonight i watched 15 15 year olds speak about a topic close to their heart better & with more sense & conviction than 99% of our current politicians and, not for the first time, I thought ‘everything will be okay, for young people are awesome’ @SpeakersTrust #JPSpeakOut pic.twitter.com/rRmcINQ8zF— Natasha Devon MBE (@_NatashaDevon) July 1, 2019
After a conversation about Where’s Your Head At?, a campaign to push for parity of esteem between mental and physical first aid in the workplace, Natasha shared her first I am - “I am a work in progress,” drawing upon her personal development over the years and specifically in regards to thinking about feminism.
“I think it’s really important to challenge yourself to listen to people who have views and experiences that are radically different to your own,” Natasha explains. “And to respect that as well.”
“I am angry” - Natasha shares as her second offering. Politics, lack of opportunity and inequality play a role in this anger, as do personal hurts.
“I squashed my anger for many, many years - but what I now understand about feelings is that its energy, you can’t destroy feelings, you can turn them into something else but if you ignore them, they won’t go away,” she shares.
“I’m only just learning to live alongside my anger, be comfortable with it and harness it in a way that’s useful.”
Natasha explains how she has become better at confrontation and channelling her professional anger into making change happen. In addition to Where’s Your Head At?. This work includes speaking out about the current education system and the missed opportunities to discuss on mental health and illness with young people.
Dogs were the focus of Natasha’s third I am - “I am a dog person and I believe dogs are magic for mental wellbeing.” Natasha shares that she has an affinity with our canine chums and would love to have one in her life.
(Since the recording, Natasha has welcomed a beautiful cat into her life... and it's most definitely love.)
As for Natasha’s I have? You’ll have to listen to find out...
You can listen to Natasha’s episode of I am. I have now, as well as other interviews with Megan Crabbe, Emily Dean, Munroe Bergdorf, Rose McGowan and others.
Find out more about Natasha’s work, follow her on Instagram @_natashadevon and check out her weekly column in Grazia.
Check out Where’s Your Head At? and add your voice to the campaign.