My Myplace Journey: Dan

Dan shares his Myplace journey with us and how the confidence and skills he has gained along the way have helped him go from strength to strength.

Why did you decide to join the Myplace project?

I have a severe anxiety disorder, after finishing university it started getting really bad. It led to a lack of confidence and depression and feeling useless about everything. It put me off about doing things, worried that I was going to get it wrong. I would avoid doing any sort of social situation where I did not know people.

I did a degree in Wildlife Conservation and Zoobiology, graduated three or four years before joining the project. I struggled to get a job which didn’t help and I was out of work and at a bit of a loose end and struggling to cope with it all. At my worst points I struggled to see any sort of future where I would be of any worth, I didn’t know where my life was heading and was really struggling to cope and talk to people about my situation.

I heard about Myplace through the Mudpack volunteer group at Brockholes, one of the members of staff running the group asked about my background and suggested Myplace as he felt it was a good thing to do and that the people involved had gone through similar experiences. I knew I loved wildlife and being outdoors so I thought the Myplace project would be a chance to help my situation.

At my worst points I struggled to see any sort of future where I would be of any worth, I didn’t know where my life was heading and was really struggling to cope and talk to people about my situation... I knew I loved wildlife and being outdoors so I thought the Myplace project would be a chance to help my situation.
Dan
Miller Fold Community Hub

Where are you now? How have things changed since joining Myplace?

In such a better place than I was before I joined Myplace. The main thing was the confidence issues, but that has exploded (In a good way!) since joining Myplace.

Before I would worry about things a lot, though I do still get nervous I am much more confident. I got confident in speaking out, sharing my opinions rather than thinking they would be wrong, and people would judge me for them. There is never any judgement from anyone at Myplace which for me is one of the key reasons I think my confidence improved.

Tool use and new skills learnt, used to freak me out but now I look forward to the opportunity. I used to purposely avoid doing anything where they used something I hadn’t heard of or used before, by the end of the project I looked forward to getting to use something new and learning about it. My resilience has improved.

Using wellbeing and mindfulness techniques learnt from the project. Bird beak method – used that method in my grandparents garden. One thing I got from the whole Myplace experience was being able to talk about it to my family and fiancée. That I could show them things I've done or learned and felt like I was actually doing things to make them feel proud was a feeling I hadn’t had in a long time, and that makes a huge difference to your confidence.

I went from not knowing what lay ahead in my future to having something I enjoyed doing to aim for - a career in horticulture. Something to motivate me, things I had learned skills for and could actually put into practice in the real world. I feel ready to start applying for jobs, feel more belief in myself. Before the COVID-19 outbreak I was most of the way through a horticultural course and volunteering with Let's Grow Preston. For the time being those have both come to a halt but I have managed to get a short-term casual job working for Royal Mail. Something that before doing Myplace I don’t believe I would have had the confidence or belief in myself to do.

 

One thing I got from the whole Myplace experience was being able to talk about it to my family and fiancée. That I could show them things I've done or learned and felt like I was actually doing things to make them feel proud was a feeling I hadn’t had in a long time, and that makes a huge difference to your confidence.
Dan
Campfire

Dan’s confidence in dealing with new situations grew to the extent that he was able to take up new opportunities identified for him by his Myplace Project Officer. He started volunteering with the Let’s Grow Preston project and started a college horticulture course. These have unfortunately been curtailed by the Covid-19 pandemic and the measures put in place by government to reduce it’s spread. However it is a credit to him and how far he has come, how he is coping at this time. Dan has started volunteering as a Myplace volunteer and participating and sharing his knowledge on online sessions

Could Myplace support you or someone you know?

If you are struggling, we can help.

In light of the current COVID-19 situation and social distancing measures we have developed free, online ecotherapy sessions for anyone aged 16 or over.

Our Myplace project has been running successfully since 2016 and since that time we have supported over 1000 people to live healthier, happier lives through regular contact with nature. Let us bring nature to you.

Find out more or sign-up to our online sessions today.

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