We have all learned out of necessity before, with school and even clubs our parents encouraged. Arriving at adulthood self driven but taught by others, we are missing additional learning. Part of mental wellness and recovery is learning how to self teach, how to relearn behaviors and to explore new aspects of ourselves on our journey to wellness.
It is no secret that a large part of recovery is learning. Learning that the old ways aren’t working, learning more about ourselves, and learning what to do about it. Having support and the proper advisors is essential, but so is teaching yourself to be you, healthily. Recently Time Magazine published an article about actor and UN spokeswoman Emma Watson. Watson has started an international book club, as part of her year dedicated to self teaching and learning. Shared Shelf is a place for people, men and women alike, to read empowering and monumental literature and learn together through discussion and online panels. This news was so encouraging to me, that someone so famous would take such initiative. This idea of a book club is often a large step in self-teaching, creating a community and discovering an avenue to learning. Some will absorb information better by listening to podcasts, others by attending lectures, but finding sources of information and a community to discuss it with are incredible avenues for learning.
If you’ve joined a book club before and you didn’t find it helpful, think of what you put into it. Actively reading and engaging in thoughtful discussion can teach you immensely more than being a passive member of a group. Notice how I said discussion, not argument or lecture. A discussion is a give and take, and a large part of learning is voicing your thoughts out loud and reflecting on them. Not every book has wisdom to impart, but there are so many about mental health and wellness from experts in their fields that can help us understand and move forward with recovery. Look online for a digital book club or start one with your inner circle of friends today.