Ask an Expert: Onsite’s Mickenzie Vought

Ask an Expert: Onsite’s Mickenzie Vought

In honor of May being Mental Health Awareness Month, we’re highlighting different mental health resources in our communities each week.

Today, we’re sharing thoughts from Mickenzie Vought, Editorial and Community Director at Onsite in Nashville, TN. Here, she's responsible for furthering Onsite’s mission of changing lives through enhanced emotional health by creating and curating emotional health resources.

Tell us more about the work you do at Onsite and why you’re so passionate about it.

As the Editorial and Community Director, I get the incredible privilege of creating and curating resources that make mental and emotional health approachable and accessible. One of my favorite parts of my job is producing and co-hosting Onsite’s Living Centered Podcast. Every week we have rich, authentic conversations about things that really matter — and that bind us all as humans.

Over the last three years working at Onsite, I’ve become increasingly passionate about the work we’re doing to destigmatize mental health and ensure people get the help that they need and deserve.

The last two years have taken a heavy and taxing toll on our collective mental health. Statistics, along with our own personal lived experiences, tell us that people are in desperate need of emotional and mental wellness tools and resources.

I love getting the opportunity to help people become more connected to themselves and the people around them through the resources, experiences and tools our team puts out into the world — from courses, articles, podcasts, in-person workshops, therapeutic intensives and residential care, too.

Skin Pharm is a big advocate of helping restore confidence so that it flows into other aspects of their lives in a positive way — how have you seen mental health change for people by taking care of themselves like this?

Our mental health is an integral part of our holistic health. I think one of the biggest misconceptions about mental health is that it is somehow different than any other aspect of our health. We think to pursue mental wellness, something has to be “broken” or “wrong.”

But just like eating healthy, caring for our bodies or working out, mental health and wellness can (and should be) managed proactively. We don’t have to wait for a crisis to ask for help. We don’t have to be burnt out and overwhelmed to prioritize taking care of ourselves. Many of us carry around the belief that investing in our emotional health is “selfish,” but I believe it is one of the most selfless things we can do.

If you want to be healthy leader, parent, boss, coworker or friend, etc., you have to start with being a healthy you.

What do you know now that you wish you knew about mental health before?

I wish that I’d known that I didn’t need to do it alone and that asking for help or support didn’t make me weak. I recently shared on a bonus episode of our Living Centered Podcast that I take pride in being perceived as strong and capable. I often think it’s fine for other people to ask for help, but not me. However, what I’m learning is that asking for help is the greatest gift I can give myself — and the people around me.

At Onsite, we often say that we’re wounded in community, therefore we’re healed in community. Our deepest hurts don’t happen in isolation, and I’ve experienced firsthand that the greatest level of healing happens in the context of safe community. There is power in shared vulnerability and empathy. I think this work is less about finding solutions to the problems we’re facing; instead, it’s a journey in finding commonality and connection with the people around us.

What is one piece of mental health advice that you’re thankful for?  

Someone on the Onsite team once told me, “It’s not all or nothing, it’s all or something.” I come back to this statement often when it comes to my mental and emotional health.

How many times do we write off taking care of ourselves if we can’t do it perfectly? (Talking to all the perfectionists out there!)

This advice is a permission slip in embracing small, incremental changes. I can’t do it all, but I can do something today that will benefit me in the long run. At Onsite, we believe in what we’ve coined the “2-degree shift,” or the phenomenon of small adjustments making monumental impact over time.

What is one practice that keeps you centered?

A vital practice for me to live centered is moving my body. I have a goal to integrate movement into my every day. Embracing the “all or something” mentality, it looks different every day. Sometimes it’s an intense workout, other times it’s a walk with my dog at lunch, other days it’s dancing in the kitchen and making dinner with my daughter.

What I’ve learned is that caring for my mental health is a holistic experience. And the more I can create moments to truly be in my body, the more connected I live.

What are some ways people can engage with Onsite moving forward?

Our world has become increasingly disconnected from ourselves and each other. We believe the first step in almost any emotional wellness journey is to reconnect with ourselves so that we can cultivate vulnerable and authentic connections with the people around us.

For over 40 years, Onsite has come alongside tens of thousands of individuals on their mental health journey by designing and delivering transformational experiences that optimize life and build meaning and value into the human experience. Onsite currently offers world-renowned emotional wellness retreats, therapeutic intensives, residential trauma care, and digital resources.

All these efforts empower people to take ownership over the lives they want to live and build empathy, self-awareness, resilience and compassion into their daily lives.

RESOURCES:

Follow Onsite on social media all month long as they offer resources and tools in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month.

Subscribe to the Living Centered Podcast to join Onsite for weekly conversations about mental health, emotional wellness and living a centered life.

Explore digital courses designed to help individuals connect more deeply with themselves, explore emotional and mental wellness concepts and move from knowledge and awareness to sustainable action. (Use code SKINPHARM for 20% off!)

Learn more about Onsite’s in-person experiences in both Tennessee or connect with one of their trusted Admissions specialists at 1-800-341-7432.

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