Episode 125 of the Live Authentically podcast presents Keith Anderson, a lawyer, consultant, keynote speaker and founder of Worth Living Mental Health Consulting. He’s also an author of “Life Worth Living: A Mental Health Anthology.”
Keith knows mental health struggles all too well. He founded his business because he had depression for 16 years himself.
He says he lives authentically by being very real to himself. Keith talks about a very vivid mental breakdown he went through almost 20 years ago. He remembers the day. He remembers where he was. He can still picture what happened.
“After my breakdown and recovery, I went to therapy for a couple of years and had great family support, I worked hard on myself at it as well,” Keith said. “I’m grateful every day. That’s how I come in as real. That’s how I start the day– I’m grateful I’m still here.”
Keith sticks to the present by telling Pam that he’s grateful he gets to chat with her. He says having someone new to connect with is special and keeps him grounded and real. He also expresses how he remembers the darkness, but how he also celebrates his life now through connecting with others.
And Keith isn’t afraid to admit that he will never be completely healthy as far as his mental health goes. He uses an analogy of the ankle he broke to explain why this is the case and how he copes with it.
“Am I 100 percent healthy in terms of my mental health? No. Never will be,” Keith said. “I broke my ankle one day. I went through the crutches, the cast, physiotherapy, all those things, of course. Is it 100 percent? No, it’s not. Never will be. But it functions. I can walk, I can run, I can get around.”
Keith delves deeper into the time he had depression. He says he did not realize he had it. He talks about the tragedies he endured in his young life that likely contributed.
“My father had died young, and with his passing, my everyday life changed,” Keith said. “I kind of just compounded at the time. I didn’t get it, didn’t understand what it was until I had hit a wall.”
Keith went to see his family doctor the morning five days before his mental breakdown. He spent half an hour with him, which was rare– normally he’d only spend five minutes or so. They talked about depression. Keith had no idea what it was at the time.
He believes the mental breakdown literally saved his life. You can learn more about Keith and his business by watching the podcast here. Or you can visit his website or follow him on Facebook or Instagram.