Alastair Campbell’s five-a-day

Yesterday, Jo and I went to Stand to Reason’s ‘Celebrating Recovery’ conference at City Hall to pester politicians about Mindapples. And within five minutes of arriving, we’d already got Alastair Campbell’s five-a-day!

Alastair Campbell's five-a-day for mental health

In case you can’t read that, it says:

  1. Sleep
  2. Family / home
  3. Exercise (including playing football)
  4. Bigger cause (including Burnley FC)
  5. Laughter (see 4)

He also took a Mindapples badge and gave us his e-mail address, which was very nice of him. So I feel it’s only fair to give his new book a plug too, since he was signing copies of it for several hours in the foyer until we all thought his arm would fall off.

Then Anne Milton, Shadow Minister for Mental Health, shared her five in her speech:

  1. Gym/exercise
  2. Gardening (she told lovely anecdote about her grandfather’s 1910 gardening book, which included the line “no gardener can fail to be exhiliarated by the sight of snowdrops bursting forth”)
  3. A glass of wine with her very supportive husband
  4. Friendships

(That’s only four, Anne, but we spotted the cheeky glass of wine in point 3, so we’ll count that as number 5.)

I also had nice chats with Dr Liz Miller, Paul Jenkins at Rethink, and Stand to Reason’s energetic founder Jonathan Naess. And we rounded things off with a great plug for Mindapples from Kathryn Tyson, policy lead on mental health at the Department of Health. Yay!

I liked the energy around Stand to Reason too: good speakers, a positive energy and a sense of being really grounded in people’s daily experiences. I’m wondering if there’s a way we can work together in the future.