Mental As Anyone

MAA #032: With Jo Bella

Sept. 16, 2016

Interview with the lovely Jo Bella, who was not a comedy fan at all back in her uni days, but now works as Comedy Producer and also has a partner who is a Comedian.  Jo shifted from being a corporate high flyer living an unhealthy lifestyle to being a happier, healthier person working in the Comedy world.  Among other achievements, Jo produced four Fringe comedy shows in 2015, and she has produced more shows this year. 

We discuss: The ‘normality’ of mental health issues, the model orphanage in Scotland where her Dad was raised, family mental health issues and losses, being the rock for her Mum, physiological vs environmental causes for mental health issues, impact of grief, the challenge of very mental unwell people not being able to access treatment, comedy as therapy for healing from trauma and a source of empowerment and catharsis, the benefits of exercise, family love of cooking, being in nature, the meditative process of running, leg pressing 100kg after 2 weeks of training, awareness of factors that impact mood, universality of self-doubt, connecting with friends for support via social media, the illuminating Clue app to track periods and mood (you’re welcome ladies!), sharing of grief, time for healing*, shame over ‘traditionally shameful’ things, the importance of reaching out, being vigilant about managing mental health, love of travelling solo, strengthening social connections, Sean’s activism and street medic work, empathy and alliances, picking your environment and pursuing your values, Jo’s super powers, and Jo’s message about the importance of talking to others, and to be weird and be yourself because ‘normal’ is the problem.

*Special guest sounds from the cleaner and Bourke Street trams!

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