Suicide Prevention, a Journey From The Edge


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In this powerful episode, Chris Shaw talks about navigating the mental health care system, teen suicide statistics, reluctant legislators, post COVID spike in stressors, survivor trauma to strategies and changing attitudes about mental illness.

Chris speaks about mental health challenges from the inside out, as one who has struggled with depression and substance abuse to creating The HEART and MIND Connection, a mental health advocate and education non-profit.

Chris Shaw, CPSS, CFPS, CPRS

Chris grew up in NY City and moved to Stillwater, MN when his mother remarried. He is a 3-tour Navy Veteran and went to U of W River Falls and got his BA in English.

He toured as a stand-up comedian and struggled with mental health challenges and a near-fatal suicide attempt in 2015. During a treatment stay at the Minneapolis VA Hospital he met a “Peer Support Specialist.” Through that experience, he trained to became a Certified Peer Support Specialist and then founded The HEART and MIND Connection.


CHRIS: “...not all diseases are visible. And what we're talking about are people walking around who on the outside look perfectly quote unquote normal, and yet are dealing with a crap storm inside of their brain...”

CHRIS: “...with everything going on and everything being thrown at kids, they just wanna know that they matter.”

CHRIS: “Nobody who has a family member who gets cancer, goes, oh my gosh, what did I do that gave them cancer? We just don't do that. And, and we need to stop doing that about mental health.”

CHRIS: “The past is where depression develops and the future is where anxiety lives. “

PAT: “There is... a generational shift in how mental illness is perceived. Millennials and the Generation Z’s, they're much more accepting and knowledgeable about mental illness than previous generations.”

CHRIS: “Kindness could be the simplest thing...people say, I don't have any education in mental health and I don't have any experience... Hey, have you ever smiled at somebody? Have you ever asked somebody, how are you - then you have experience.”


The HEART and MIND Connection


Seriously MENTAL with Chris Shaw!

A.C.E.S. (Adverse Childhood Experiences)

ACES QUIZ (American Society for the Positive Care of Children)

People who need help sometimes look a lot like people who don't need help.” Glennon Doyle


Talking Teen Mental Health, Fill To Capacity Podcast Episode 17

Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole by Susan Cain


A.L.G.E.E. (Mental Health First Aid Action Plan)

Steve Rummler Hope Network

Naloxone Kit: “Narcan (Naloxone) kits can quickly reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Naloxone, easily delivered in a nasal spray, knocks opioids and heroin off the brain's opioid receptors, reversing the effects of the opioid and allowing the person to breathe again”

Emma Benoit, documentary film: “My Ascension” - "My Ascension" is a feature length documentary that chronicles Emma's inspiring journey and quest to walk again, as she works to bring Hope Squad, a school-based suicide prevention program, to Louisiana.

“Suicide The Ripple Effect"

"The Ripple Effect" describes the repercussions on loved ones when one commits suicide. It also refers to the response to positive interaction and support given to those who are going through depression, despair, and mental illness.

Green Bandana Project

Kindness Crew

Kindness Crew is a year-round kindness-based leadership program specifically designed for elementary schools. The goal of the kindness crew is to create a team of students in your school with the sole purpose of inspiring and carrying out acts of kindness throughout your entire student body.

H.E.A.R.T. Helping Every at Risk Teen

Kris Frykman, Art Therapist, Suicide Survivor'sClub

This podcast is dedicated to those who left too soon, and to those left behind.

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