“Miley Cyrus Climbs every Mountain!”

Posted on by Lara Murray
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Michelle Howieson is the facilitator with the Lothian Bipolar Self help Group and one of the judges of the Self Management Awards 2017. We are delighted Michelle has agreed to be one of the judges this year. She has considerable knowledge and experience of self management to share. Read on to find out about the award-winning Michelle. 

What is self management to you?

Self management enables me to make decisions about the best way to keep well and what helps me get back on track after being knocked off by life stresses. Although it involves me taking personal responsibility for my choices it’s also about knowing when to ask for help.

What are you most looking forward to about being a judge for the Self Management Awards?

As a Change Champion for the Equally Fit project I’m looking forward to hearing about best practice from different areas of Scotland and sharing them with our Change Network!

I’m also delighted that I’ll have more time to read about some of the fantastic projects which enable people to be in control of their health conditions.

Why do you think people should submit a nomination for the Self Management Awards?

Submitting a nomination raises awareness of projects which follow best practice and sharing that practice with the wider network.  It helps inspire hope in people and gives them more person-centred choices.

If your friends could describe you in three words, what would they be?

I believe that we gravitate towards people who have similar values, talents and qualities as ourselves.  I would describe my friends as being generous (with time and spirit); resilient and most definitely supportive and I’m sure they would say the same about me..or else!

What would be the soundtrack to your life right now?

I can relate to the words of ‘The Climb’ by Miley Cyrus most of the time but particularly after coming through a difficult period recently.  It can be a real struggle at times and it’s ok not to be ok but with help there’s always hope of being in a better place. For me it’s about the journey and not reaching the destination which usually means that you’re not moving forward.

Photograph of Michelle Howieson holding her Bipolar Scotland Volunteer of the Year award What is the biggest compliment you’ve ever received?

The biggest compliment I have ever received was being awarded Bipolar Scotland’s Volunteer of The Year in 2011.

I won the award for my role as a facilitator with the Lothian Bipolar Self help Group. Which was announced at Bipolar Scotland’s Annual Conference. I hadn’t managed to get to the event as my dog was really ill so had no idea that I had won anything.

I got was such a huge surprise when a friend at the group presented the award to me at a group social meet up and was even more special to receive it from the people who had voted for me.

Being invited by the Alliance to judge some of the entries for this year’s Self Management Awards is also a huge compliment so thanks for the opportunity and good luck to all the nominees!

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