Orezi, we are proud of you for publicly sharing your journey

August 03, 2018

The core units that we offer at The Mental Health Academy are self care, storytelling and social entrepreneurship. Of the 3, storytelling seems to be the most popular as it not only builds community among the fellows as they hear each others stories but also takes them down a personal inner journey.

One of our fellows, Orezi from Nigeria, recently shared her story...in public...for the first...to a large audience. We caught up with her to learn more about the event, how the storytelling experience was for her and the role the sessions she has been doing at The Mental Health Academy played.

TMHA:::You recently shared your story publicly, tell us more about the event.

Orezi::: My church does something called ‘God Experience’ where you tell the church how you became a believer, or amazing experiences you have had with God.

TMHA::: What was your story about?

Orezi::: My story was about Rejection, Depression and Gods unique way of healing me by walking me through my hurt.

TMHA::: How long was your story and what audience type did you share it to?

Orezi::: (My story was) about 10 minutes (long and I shared it to) a mixed audience (of) teenagers to people in their 40’s

TMHA::: How many people were in the audience (roughly)

Orezi::: 300+

TMHA::: Have you told your story in public before?
Orezi::: No I have not.

TMHA::: So what inspired you to share this story, now?

Orezi::: I don’t know, I have just decided to start being brave and saying yes to new things.

TMHA::: (Being the first you were going to share your story), how did you prepare?

Orezi::: I just used time to reflect and depended on the leading of the Holy Spirit. I just knew how I wanted to start and end.

I tried (rehearsing) for a day but I just left it after that because I wanted it to be natural and flow smoothly. After all it was my story and all I needed was to be honest and transparent.

TMHA::: What role did the storytelling session by The Mental Health Academy play in creating and sharing your story?

Orezi::: It helped me plan how I was going to speak. So I followed the 4 steps I was introduced to by the session.

TMHA::: How did you feel immediately after sharing your story?

Orezi::: Um, I felt naked, exposed. It took a while to shake the feeling off. I am not an open person so it felt weird.

TMHA::: What was the immediate reaction from the audience?

Orezi::: They all thought it was amazing, which was shocking for me. People cried, they were blessed and inspired. And apparently I am a great speaker.

TMHA::: Will you continue to share your story with others and in different spaces? 

Orezi::: Yes, because it heals me and helps others.

TMHA::: Speaking of healing, is there anything else you did alongside your faith that has helped you in your healing journey? 

Orezi::: My faith is the centre of my healing, but I feel acknowledging your issue (Depression) and wanting to get better no matter what it takes.

Pushing yourself to deal with the uncomfortable parts of your issue and wanting to get better and do better ever single day!

Faith is not about just  praying and fasting...it's about reflection and taking charge of your physical and mental health, taking big steps and pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone.. Being whole is attainable.

We are in charge of ourselves and how we react to what we are dealt in life. Life is about choice. My belief in God highlighted my route to healing.

TMHA::: What is the current idea/project you are working on at TMHA*?

Orezi::: Mindmap Africa, and it is a centre that is bringing mental health to the social scene and integrating it into individual’s social life and experience.

TMHA::: Will you use storytelling in any part of your project? 

Orezi::: I will use story telling for the support groups and workshops events. I feel everyone should learn about storytelling (as) it releases and shifts an individual’s perspective. It also makes people not feel alone in their struggles.

TMHA::: Any tips for anyone looking to get into storytelling

Orezi::: Just go for it! There is a gift of healing inside of you that the world needs to hear through your story. You will give hope.

TMHA::: We are so proud of you Orezi and look forward to hearing more about your project - mind Map - and the impact it will have.

*A little about the sessions Orezi has been part of at TMHA
Orezi is on the one on one online program. We do a 2 hour session every two weeks and she uses the in between time to apply the lessons to build her project. At the time of the above mentioned storytelling event, she was doing research and prototyping her project - mind map Africa.

If you'd like to learn more about the academy, visit our website and get in touch via the contact form and we will schedule a free consultation call.

Still on that storytelling tip, watch this a 1 minute video from the storytelling session we had with the January Class.

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