Former Herts and Essex girl Natasha Devon focuses on mental health in new book
Former Herts and Essex High School student Natasha Devon is continuing her mental health crusade with an acclaimed new book.
The 37-year-old self-esteem guru’s latest work has been hailed as a must-read masterpiece by journalist and LBC broadcaster James O’Brien.
Former Government mental health champion Natasha, who in 2015 was awarded an MBE for her work with young people, draws on a lifetime of living with mental illness, as well as access to some of the world’s leading experts, to lift the lid on issues she believes have been swept under the carpet of national consciousness for too long.
A Beginner’s Guide To Being Mental: An A-Z from Anxiety to Zero F**ks Given focuses on the fact that one in three people in the UK will experience anxiety during their lifetime – 8.2 million people this year alone – but Natasha says very few have the language they need to let others know how they feel.
She suffered from panic attacks at a young age and developed the eating disorder bulimia when she was 17.
After leaving the Warwick Road secondary, she started the Body Gossip movement with fellow ex-Herts and Essex pupil Ruth Rogers to promote positive self-image and continued that work with the Self-Esteem Team, visiting hundreds of schools across the country with both projects.
Now a regular contributor to The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph, she also writes a weekly column for The Times Educational Supplement and is a TV and radio regular, making appearances on programmes like This Morning, Channel 4 News, Sky News, LBC and BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour. She also featured in BBC3’s How to Live with Women, Channel 4’s Gok’s Teens and presented BBC iWonder’s Why Do I Earn Less than a Man?
Natasha is a fellow of the University of Wales, Cosmopolitan Ultimate Woman of the Year 2012 and in 2015 The Sunday Times and Debretts named her one of the 500 most influential people in Britain.
For World Mental Health Day last October, she created the Mental Health Media Charter, to ensure reporting of the subject is both responsible and stigma-reducing.
* A Beginner’s Guide To Being Mental: An A-Z from Anxiety to Zero F**ks Given, by Natasha Devon with illustrations by Rubyetc, was published on May 17 by Bluebird and costs £12.99.