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Walmart Shooter Purchased Gun Just Hours Before Killing, Authorities Say

The gunman who shot and killed six co-workers at a Walmart in Chesapeake, VA, earlier this week legally purchased the gun hours before the massacre. He also left what he titled a “death note” on his phone detailing grievances with various people in his life.

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Far-Right 4channers Launch Attack on the Trevor Project’s Suicide Hotline

The far-right website 4chan launched a coordinated attack against The Trevor Project—a nonprofit organization focusing on suicide prevention among LGBTQ youth.

A post on the website called for users to inundate The Trevor Project’s hotlines with false phone calls for help and inaccurate location information. In a collective effort to use up as many of the organization’s resources as possible, users aimed to prevent at-risk LGBTQ youth from receiving assistance in their most critical moments.

The Trevor Project’s website lists grim statistics on suicide rates among LGBTQ youth. Nationally, suicide is the second leading cause of death among people aged 10-24. At least one young person in the LGBTQ community attempts suicide every 45 seconds.

“The Trevor Project’s 2022 Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health found that 45% of LGBTQ youth seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year, including more than half of transgender and nonbinary youth.”

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 4chan began as a messaging board in 2003 and quickly became known for its population of internet “trolls.” In recent years, the “alt-right” movement has taken over the website. The original post to mobilize was made on its most active board, “/pol/,” which stands for politically incorrect. In 2022 “/pol/” was the most active board on the website, serving as a primary platform for far-right extremists.

Real-world violence has been linked to the board. Racist, white supremacist, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, misogynistic and anti-LGBTQ commentary riddles its front page. In April, the gunman who shot four people in Washington D.C. posted a video of the shooting on 4chan. The perpetrator of the mass shooting in a Buffalo supermarket in May released a 180-page manifesto with language lifted directly from the website’s boards.

Users of the board referred to The Trevor Project as an organization of “groomers,” a term frequently used by the far right to equate the LGBTQ community and their advocacy with pedophilia.

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Due to the influx of calls, the nonprofit had to place a banner atop its website that listed there would be delayed wait times as they struggled to maintain the demand for assistance.

In a statement to The Daily Dot, the nonprofit spoke on the morality of this coordinated attack.

“The act of attacking a crisis services line intended to prevent suicide among young people is egregious. Our crisis counselors work around the clock to be there for LGBTQ youth who feel like they have nowhere to turn, and it’s harrowing that anybody would attempt to compromise our lifeline or encourage suicide.”

The Trevor Project intends to continue its advocacy work despite the attacks, vowing to protect its counselors and people seeking its service. It is the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis organization for LGBTQ youth.

Mental Health Yoga on Beach

Travel Agencies Putting Mental Health Awareness At The Forefront Of Tourist Culture

Travelling is often seen as a way of escaping our everyday regular lives while experiencing someplace completely new, different, and relaxing. One of the newest points that major travel companies and operators are trying to implement into their businesses is a focus on mental health. We often associate vacations with relaxation, however, we never specifically discuss why we need to relax, or real ways that can help our minds relax with the rest of our bodies. Here are some companies who are putting the focus on bettering ourselves inside and out while travelling:

Alchemy Adventures is run by Kim Mlinarik, a psychotherapist, and her establishment offers nine-day tours starting at $3,700. The trips take parents of teens on tours of the Trails of Tuscany to help them gain perspective and communicate with one another over the struggles of parenting teenagers. The trips, which forces parents to leave their kids at home, promotes self-reflection and creative means of communication through hiking and wine tour adventures. 

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Black Tomato is a company that offers a series of trips designed to address specific life challenges for its patrons. For example, if you’re an individual who has a hard time balancing your work and personal life, Black Tomato recommends a trip to Copenhagen where you can engulf yourself in their healthy working culture that prioritizes everyone going home early to be with their families. The website takes you through a slew of different trip options based on what specific challenges you may be facing. 

Tierra del Volcán is an Ecuadorian-based travel company that offers an adventure to its customers called “Twenty-Five Seconds.” If all of Earth’s history was compacted into 24-hours, humans would have only been on this planet for 25 seconds. The trip itself goes through the Amazon, the Andes, and the Galapagos. At night, travelers will sleep in cozy tents on the slopes of a dormant volcano near the Cotopaxi National Park. 

David Prior is a travel adviser that also specializes in relationship issues. Prior describes what he does as helping clientele “tackle relationship issues by crafting travel prescriptions for them.” These “prescriptions” call on couples to go to specific locations and endure specific cultural traditions, nature walks, ceremonies, or anything else that Prior feels will promote open-communication and the strengthening of you and your significant others relationship. 

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On the more luxurious side, Brown & Hudson is a UK based travel agency that incorporates travelling to inner space in their customers’ vacations. The goal is to help their clientele with whatever issues they may be having, whether it be overcoming personal trauma, or simply struggling to decide what to do in their relationship or business. A month before clients go on their trips, they are required to go to trust-building sessions with a psychologist working for the company. According to founder Philippe Brown, the clients are then dropped into the wilderness of Mongolia with a satellite phone and basic provisions to last a week. 

“At critical moments, the therapist is brought in to provide counsel. It’s intensive — and expensive — because the goal is to gain ‘accelerated clarity’ that would normally take months of conventional therapy.”

While it may be awhile before you’re able to travel freely again, when you do get that opportunity, consider going on a trip that’s meant to be engaging, educational, and beneficial for your physical and mental well-being. After enduring a global health crisis, we all will be ready for a trip specifically designed around decompression, and complete relaxation.

World Mental Health Day

Mental Health Illness In Young People Reaches ‘Alarming’ Rates

With reports suggesting one person commits suicide every 40 seconds worldwide, there have been calls to address the alarming rates of young people suffering from mental illness.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death amongst young people aged 15 to 29 and became the focus of the World Health Organization (WHO) during this years’ World Mental Health Day.

The WHO are keen to promote measures which can be taken to help prevent and reduce levels of suicide across the world. Their recommendations include reducing access to the means of suicide, ensuring that the media always reports responsibly on the topic, introducing more school/college-based interventions and identifying cases early – such as individuals who already suffer from mental illness or substance abuse.

There are also calls to improve the training of non-specialized health workers, so that they are better able to recognize and monitor those at risk from suicide. Not forgetting that mental health issues can be long term and require continual monitoring, the WHO has also recommended more adequate follow-up care and community support for those who have previously attempted suicide.

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On the November 7th the WHO and UNICEF hosted a global conference to discuss child and adolescent mental health. The WHO’s 2013-2020 action plan aims to reduce global suicide rates by 10% by 2020 and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are aiming for a 33% reduction by 2030.

With an estimated 3.1% of the US population suffering from Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Major Depressive Disorder affecting more than 16 million American adults, it is of critical importance that people feel supported through any mental health difficulties but are also empowered with techniques to alleviate any unnecessary feelings of fear, depression and anxiety so that these do not become a wider issue.

Whilst it is true that an element of fear is required for survival and motivation, these feelings can be crippling and have a drastic impact upon someone’s quality of life. Within his new book A Life Without Fear transformational coach Garry Jones is keen to share practical tools and the necessary push to go out, take control and use exactly what works for them to their own benefit.

At the heart of Garry’s process is a simple A.B.C; he encourages people to Accept nothing, Believe nothing and Check everything. He doesn’t think It is enough for people to simply take his word for it that these techniques work, he is passionate that everyone needs to try these tools for themselves to really discover what is most effective for them. Garry explains “The real test is the “Check Everything” part. It is very easy to do the first two using a solid set of beliefs/truths that are yours. The most important part is to check it.”

The book is set out in his M.A.G.I.C.K structure, Meditation, Anchor, Gratitude, Intentions, Cardio and Kin-aesthetic, and within this, he demonstrates the importance of acting upon the advice and techniques he provides. He says “Billions of pounds/dollars are spent each year on self-help books and media. And yet, very few people change. Why? The key to the clue is the very first word – SELF! Taking responsibility for change. Wanting to change. Really wanting to change. So, unless you are prepared to take that to heart, save yourself some money and put this book back on the shelf”

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Garry emphasizes the importance of breathing throughout. For Garry, a life without fear is purely breathing with ease. He thinks that to really minimize fear and embrace life, people need to utilize their whole lung capacity, which currently many people do not, particularly if they are consumed by panic or worry. Garry thinks that breathing has major transformative powers and can alter our body chemistry. Focusing on the out breath helps to reduce these feelings because this activates the Vagus nerve which has the power to change someone’s heartbeat. He also says sufferers should fill the space in their lungs not only with air, but also with gratitude and positivity.

This is alongside clearing out the brain clutter, changing their perspective and embracing the beneficial impact of cardio that he believes also contribute extensively to mental well-being.

For Garry, everyone deserves to live a life without unnecessary fear and it is only by taking action will this be truly possible. It is not enough to simply own and read ‘self-help’ books as he is passionate that action is the vital component needed for release.

“To really move forward individuals need to give themselves permission to change, hold themselves to account and be honest with themselves in order to create a future without fear where they feel truly alive,” explains Garry.