Opinion piece: Natasha's Success Story
Since joining The 888 Collective, I feel my confidence has soared and I’ve felt more capable than ever. My whole adult life I’ve found it a struggle to maintain employment and after a friend put me in touch with Jana, all I’ve seen is improvements in myself. In October 2017, I was offered a position in the team and at first, I was too shy to talk to people and show off my bubbly personality. But with time and encouragement, I proved to myself that I was an asset.
As well as being met with respect and understanding when things were difficult, feeling like I could be honest about my anxiety was a massive weight off my shoulders. The trickiest part for me was having to meet new people, but Jana instantly treated me like a friend and had my back the entire time. It has been so great to be talked to like an equal despite having borderline personality disorder as often, I feel subpar. Having this employment has given me the opportunity to see the good in me, my heart is warmed when I receive compliments on a job well done.
I’ve had to push myself in ways I never have - so it definitely hasn’t been easy. There are times I’ve found it almost impossible to get out of bed. Above all, finding a purpose meant I could drag myself to work. Knowing I will be met with appreciation and a fun atmosphere makes things a lot easier.
Jana has been my personal mentor throughout this and believed in me when I thought no one else would. We worked on creating mood charts which has meant I’m now more in control of my emotions, advised me on the benefits of a healthy diet and listened when I felt everything was falling apart. Having the ability to ask questions about therapy, medication and self-care from someone who has experienced it themselves gives me hope for my own future.
One of my big goals has been to obtain full time employment and I am ecstatic that I will soon be starting work as a Barista in a bakery. My smile of passion and dedication is finally shining through and I can’t thank The 888 enough.