TAMPA, Fla. — "As a suicide and abuse survivor, I know how complicated life can get," explained Johnny Crowder, who spent years trying to cope with his mental health conditions, including bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
And through that experience, he developed Cope Notes, a text message service that can help boost your mood.
"We'll text you once a day, but you'll never when we'll reach out or what we'll say. And over time, this trains your brain to default to healthier thought patterns," Crowder explains.
And if you're skeptical that a text can really alter the brain to think more positively — you're not alone.
"Admittedly, I was skeptical at first, and I thought the same thing,'' said Ryan Hoskins, who works for One Community Now, a company that's partnered with Cope Notes to offer these text messages.
Hoskins says slowly over time Cope Notes trains the brain to disrupt negative thoughts, especially during this pandemic.
"I'm coming up on a month mark, and I already notice that when I'm starting to think something more negatively or something frustrating happens, or whatever, I find that I just recover from it faster," Hoskins explained.
The randomly timed messages catch the brain off-guard. They may include exercises to relieve stress, journaling ideas, meditation tips and more.
"We'll send you psychology facts, exercises, advice, encouragement, but none of that stuff is going to change your life. Only you can do that. We're just here to help," Crowder adds.
And after several months, Cope Notes hopes you'll experience a permanent change in your pattern of thinking.
"It's easier to just deal with the stressors of the day, and they find that they can just think more positively, just naturally at that point. They don't have to work at it as much anymore," Hoskins said.
Only 500 free subscriptions are available, which is paid through the Cares Act funding. The free mental health text subscription lasts for one year. After that, there's a monthly cost for the service.
So if you're interested, click here: www.copenotes.com/redeem and use the redemption code "OCN."