Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Nov 15, 2020

“My mental health journey has been long and hard. I have dealt with depression, anxiety, PTSD, trauma and my eventual diagnosis of bipolar II disorder. Talking about it is hard. Writing about it is hard. Admitting how bad it got is hard because I never really thought that my mental health would impact my ability to mother. I never thought that I would struggle so much with my own mental health that it would impact my children.”

- Koa Hughes (The Great Canadian Woman; Vol 2)

As a mother, Koa discusses the importance of leading the next generation when it comes to talking about mental health and learning how to listen to our bodies. 

  1. Admit to yourself and then to your doctor if you’re struggling. Koa was referred to a psychiatrist which supported her wellness journey. 
  2. It’s normal to be upset about your diagnosis and medications. 
  3. You can’t just rely on medication or at least if you put in the effort on self care practices you will reach optimum health.
  4. Counselling can be beneficial.
  5. When you’ve lived in manic state it can be difficult to recognize what “normal” feeling good looks like. 
  6. Celebrate the journey and how far you have come from where you started, even the little things along the way. 
  7. You CAN be okay. You CAN be happy. You CAN live with a mental illness and live well. 
  8. Sleep is one of the number one things you need to be on top of. Sleep routine impacts mental wellness immensely.
  9. Ask for support and find support that’s going to help you. It doesn’t have to be a lonely journey. It can be people over the internet as well. 
  10. Follow people who make you feel good. Don’t compare your journey to anyone else’s.


You can usually find Koa pounding away on her computer, writing books, blogs and growing her Instagram following as a Mental Health Advocate. Koa is a Published Author in the books, The Great Canadian Woman Vol 1 & 2 where she discusses how to not only survive, but thrive, with major mental illness, as well as how to navigate parenting while managing mental illness. Koa's formal education came in the form of a Bachelor's Degree with a double major in Psychology and Indigenous Studies and she is currently studying too become a Registered Counsellor. Koa uses her education to help her better understand how to help men and women face and overcome their own adversity. Adversity is something Koa knows well. Before becoming an Executive, Author, and blogger, Koa had been lost; hopelessly adrift in a sea of abuse, trauma, limiting beliefs and mental illness diagnoses. An unhappy combination of medication and booze kept her afloat. Through immense growth, Koa has taken on the belief that she was allowing all of her adversity to take place, and in order to grow, she had to become her own solution. Now, Koa spends much of her time advocating for others who suffer with mental illness by normalizing mental illness. She believes that those who suffer with mental illness shouldn’t shrink themselves to fit the life of a sick person, and instead mental illness can be embraced and accepted as a positive.