Understanding addiction

What do you think of when I talk about addiction?  Maybe wild parties, immoral people without boundaries, illicit drug use, a debaucherous lifestyle?  Perhaps you imagine the popular idea of an “addict” – someone who either can’t control themselves or makes a choice to take drugs to the detriment of their own wellbeing.

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Receiving compassion

I suppose you could say I’ve had a bit of a rough start to the year.  Some stomach issues which started just before Christmas 2017 cumulated in finding out I had acute cholecystitis – a condition where gallstones had blocked my bile duct, causing inflammation and a host of other more serious health risks.  I had to have a cholecystectomy (surgery to have my gallbladder removed) urgently, exactly one week before going on a three week holiday in Vietnam!

Cultivating a different attitude

Early last year I talked about my newly developed anxiety around flying.  In an effort to help me manage the problem better, later in the year I attended a “Flying without fear” course held out at Auckland Airport.  Today I thought I’d share a few of the things that I learned in the hopes that it might help other people with a fear of flying.

The course contained a lot of information – some of it I already knew, some I knew about but had forgotten, and some was entirely new (and very helpful).

Back where it all began…the story of DPSN

I wasn’t a part of the DPSN team – originally the Diversityworks Peer Support Network – when it began in 2009.  In its first iteration DPSN was a pilot project of Diversityworks Trust run by its original Project Manager, the amazing Anna Nelson.  DPSN started life as both an online and offline venture, aiming to create a network that would bring together peers and stimulate conversation about diversity, complexity and social change.

I joined not long after the pilot, in 2010, and helped to run events as well as moderate the site on its original Ning platform as part of my role as Executive Assistant for Diversity New Zealand, the business run by Philip Patston which powers DPSN.

2017 in review

We here at DPSN can hardly believe it’s December already!  After what feels like a bit of a marathon through the last few months, we’re finally starting to wind down and will be taking a well earned break from the blog until February 2018.

This year has been the sixth year that DPSN has been running in it’s current format – we can’t quite believe it!  Over 2017 DPSN has only grown, reaching over 30,000 readers – nearly 200 of you following the Wordpress blog – and almost 1000 liking our Facebook page.

We’ve also now posted over 430 blogs, which is an amazing achievement for our dedicated core team as well as our generous guest bloggers.  A huge thank you to Nikki for her contributions to her guest blog Nikki’s Natter this year – we hope you’ve enjoyed her blogs as much as we have!

With privilege comes context

This month, Philip considers the question of whether we should use our privilege – either for our own benefit, or for the benefit of others. I’ve been reflecting on privilege over the last week since it came up during the last session of Be. Leadership. The questions I’ve been grappling with are: Should you use your privilege…