You’re Strong, Smart and You Got This
Couldn’t we all use more support for our mental health these days? I’ve been getting a regular dose of encouragement from The Latest Kate, a mailing list by Kate Allan that provides a daily message with a cute colorful animal drawing and an inspirational saying. It may seem silly, but I’ve found it a thoughtful pick-me-up.
Allan’s newest book, You’re Strong, Smart and You Got This: Drawings, Affirmations and Comfort to Help With Anxiety and Depression, collects a number of these images with additional content. Her introduction explains that she intends the chapters as letters to her younger self, sharing what’s helped her in the hopes of helping others.
There are sections for feeling overwhelmed, losing sight of what’s ahead, building self-acceptance, avoiding self-shame, and worry over fitting in. Each includes an actual prose letter to herself, but the appeal is the richly colored animal images, from rabbit to fox to unicorn to fish.
I find it overwhelming to contemplate them all at once — the messages get lost in redundancy. I prefer to use the book more as a wisdom jar, picking a page at random and focusing on its message. A favorite is the raven that says “You’re not obligated to make every day productive or purposeful.” This book would make an excellent gift to remind someone they aren’t alone in their feelings, as it intends.