Library School

It wasn’t until I had the courage to go back to school that my life started to change for the better.

I wrote recently at HealthCentral about the three top healthy schizophrenia recovery habits. One of them was courage.

You’ll see in Left of the Dial that I was unemployed when I went back to school. I was laid off from four out of the five jobs I held from 1990 to1997 where I worked in business in offices and had to wear suits. In the memoir I called those suits “power-blue straitjackets.”

Getting a job that I liked and was good at changed my recovery and my life for the better. It’s why I recommend that readers of my blog have the courage to do your own thing or think and not fear fear other people’s reprisal.

I have written about the beauty of living our passions over and over. I might sound like a broken record at this point or a record skipping in a locked groove. Yet it’s the number-one secret to having a full and robust life: daring to take risks to do the things that give you joy.

Of course at times all of us have to do things we’d rather not do. I’m not advocating for harming yourself by refusing to take medication or by not doing something you have to do. As citizens of the world we have to act in accordance with the social covenant: to respect and give dignity to others and not intentionally hurt or harm another person.

It takes courage to stand up for yourself. It takes courage to decide to do what you know is right instead of following along with the norms of society because you’re afraid of what others will think if you differ.

Each of us deserves to have joy in our lives.

The ultimate moral and morale of my memoir is that when I found the jobs I loved I experienced no stigma.

I’ll report back in here how it’s possible to not experience stigma.

I tell readers now and I will tell readers always:

Dare. Risk doing your own think. Risk trying out different things to see which job or career or passion will ignite your spark for living and give you ongoing joy.

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Author: Chris Bruni

Christina Bruni is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Left of the Dial. She owns a resume writing and career help business. She contributed a chapter "Recovery is Within Reach" to Benessere Psicologico: Contemporary Thought on Italian American Mental Health. As well as an author and activist, Bruni is an artist and a fitness buff.

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