The Invisible Battle

By Lauren Asher

Three years ago, I faced the toughest battle I would ever fight; the fight against my mind. This fight is something that one in four faces on a daily basis and now that I have won, I’m fighting for change.

One in four faces a battle with mental health. That means, that you know someone who is struggling or battling on a daily basis. Mental health is something that impacts everyone and that is why I am determined to make fighting and winning that battle easier.

I have been working on a project called Invisible Life in 2019 with the aim to shed light on the invisible battles individuals face regarding mental health. Through this personal blog, I have been able to support individuals in recognising that they are not alone and are, in fact, part of a large global community. People who were once scared to ask for help have since found the confidence to speak to someone they trust and have the conversations they previously were afraid to have.

The blog has since grown to support individuals who have Autism Spectrum Conditions - a diagnosis I share. People on the autistic spectrum are at increased risk of mental health conditions and suffering from anxiety due to being misunderstood. This is something I still experience and knowing what it can be like led me to create Handprints for Hope with a fellow Global Changemaker during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when millions globally experienced terrible mental health.

Handprints for Hope is an international movement that aims to bring light to people in times of darkness. It aims to break down the barriers to getting help or connecting that have been put in place by COVID-19 restrictions. Through the project, we connect people who are able to speak about what they are going through with a support system to help them understand and cope with what they are going through.

Since we launched the project, hundreds of postcards and messages have been sent across Scotland and Switzerland, connecting communities and providing hope in these strange and uncertain times.

All of us know how it feels to feel isolated and alone. Through these initiatives, we can use our shared experience to support and encourage and support each other.

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