Commentary: Mental health and wellness practice for today's elected officials – Oil City Derrick

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Updated: September 2, 2022 @ 6:15 am

Being an elected official today takes an extraordinary level of courage. And it’s taking a toll on the mental health of our elected officials. A small cadre of brave people, part of a project called the Elected Leaders Collective, is supporting leaders in doing their work in a healthier way, bringing tools of mental wel-lbeing to the arena. Too many heart-led elected officials are dropping out when we need them to stay in and change the system. With new tools of personal inquiry, transformation and empowerment, we can make it happen.
Let me share how I found this calling. I was bright-eyed and energetic, with a keen intellect and servant’s soul. Passion oozed from my core. A voracious reader, I consumed endless books on policy, learned every theory and studied the greats. I learned in the field, volunteered for campaigns and causes, became a state delegate, and took leadership seminars. I did all the external work that was expected of me. I applied these talents by running a statewide race at just 23 years old. I was idealistic and thought I would change the world.
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The Czech Republic’s coalition government has survived a parliamentary no-confidence vote over its handling of the energy crisis and a scandal involving the head of one of the country’s spy agencies. Lawmakers from the five-party coalition defeated the motion following a debate that took some 22 hours. The opposition accused the coalition of not doing enough to help people and businesses cope with the high prices for electricity and natural gas. Separately, the opposition has demanded the resignation of Interior Minister Vit Rakusan for his backing of a spy agency chief who had contacts with a businessman facing corruption charges.
Ousted Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa is expected to return home more than seven weeks after he fled the country amid mass protests that demanded his resignation, holding him and his family responsible for the country’s economic crisis. Rajapaksa currently does not face any current arrest warrants. Officials familiar with arrangements for his arrival say he is expected to return from Thailand on Friday, while local media say it will be Saturday. Rajapaksa fled from the president’s official residence on July 9 when tens of thousands of people stormed the building and occupied it, along with several other key state buildings. Later he fled to the Maldives, then to Singapore and Thailand.
A prosecutor has brought an indictment against a Turkish pop-singer for “inciting hatred and enmity,” a charge that carries sentence of one to three years in prison. Singer-songwriter Gulsen was arrested last week and sent to jail for a joke she made about Turkey’s religious schools. She was released four days later but placed under house arrest. The charges stem from a joke the singer made during a concert in April, when she quipped that one of her musicians’ “perversion” came from attending a religious school. A video of the singer’s comment began circulating on social media recently, with a hashtag calling for her arrest.
NEW YORK — Get ready to give your regards to Broadway: Curtain Up, a three-day festival celebrating the return and revival of theater heads back to Times Square at the end of the month.
PITTSBURGH — “It rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again.”
There’s a lot of information to eat up.
Fox’s “Monarch,” premiering Sept. 11, asks a specific question: “What if the Romanov dynasty was reimagined as a family of country stars in Texas?” says series creator Melissa London Hilfers. “Fox was specifically looking for something in the country music space, and wanted original music to…
Heavy fighting and shelling is continuing near Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, in a Russian-controlled area of eastern Ukraine. Friday’s fighting comes a day after experts from the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog agency voiced concerns about structural damage to the sprawling Zaporizhzhia plant. The inspectors of the International Atomic Energy Agency braved gunfire and artillery blasts along their route to reach the Zaporizhzhia plant on Thursday in a mission to help safeguard the plant against catastrophe.
Gibraltar authorities say 80 percent of the diesel from a damaged and partly sunken bulk carrier ship has been removed but that some 180 tons of heavy fuel is still on board. The ship was ordered beached after colliding Monday with another vessel in the bay of the British territory located at the western entrance to the Mediterranean Sea. A government spokesman said there had been no further seepage of heavy fuel and that the situation was under control.
A Taliban official says an explosion went off in a mosque in the northern Afghan city of Herat and that people have been killed and wounded. The official, Abdel Nafi Takor, did not have further details about Friday’s blast. Takor is a spokesman of the interior ministrty in Afghanistan’s Taliban government.
Prosecutors in Germany say a 25-year-old man has died from injuries suffered in an attack at a gay pride event in the western city of Muenster. The victim, whose name wasn’t released for privacy reasons, had come to the aid of other participants in the Aug. 27 event after they were insulted by an unknown man. The man then attacked the victim, knocking him to the ground. Authorities said the suspect in the attack fled with another person and has not yet been apprehended. Police have issued a description of the men and appealed for witnesses to come forward.
A diplomat says a court in Myanmar has sentenced a former British ambassador to the Southeast Asian nation to a year in prison for failing to register her residence. The diplomat says former envoy Vicky Bowman’s husband, a Myanmar national, was also given a one-year sentence for the same offense. The diplomat insisted on not being identified because he is not authorized to release such information. The couple were arrested on Aug. 24. The militray government said Bowman, who served as ambassador in 2002-2006, was detained for failing to inform the authorities last year of their change of address. She has since 2013 been heading the Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business, a consultancy which endorses human rights.
Taliban officials say explosion went off in mosque in Afghan city of Herat, report killed and wounded.
France’s national anti-terrorism prosecutor has warned of an increased threat of attacks on French soil by Islamic extremists coming from Iraq and Syria. Jean-Francois Ricard said in an interview Friday on French news broadcaster BFM TV that terrorist acts carried out “by individuals coming from areas where terrorists are operating, especially the Iraqi-Syrian area” cannot be ruled out. Ricard’s comments come ahead of the opening of the trial of eight suspects in connection with the 2016 Bastille Day truck attack in Nice that left 86 people dead. Ricard said the extremist threat has increased since 2020.
MT. SHASTA, Calif. — The couple from Seattle had a taste for adventure but little alpine experience, so they hired Jillian Webster, a professional mountain guide, to help them climb Mt. Shasta — one of California’s most dramatic peaks.
It’s now September — that time of year when political candidates start changing their colors weeks ahead of the autumn leaves. None more so than Pennsylvania’s Republican gubernatorial nominee, state Sen. Doug Mastriano, who in his right-wing media hits — the Christian nationalist continues …
The gold-standard measure of educational trends has the word “progress” in its name. But the National Assessment of Educational Progress unveiled Thursday showed nothing but slippage over the last two years. Students saw the largest average decline in reading since 1990 and the first drop in…
Nostalgia is a wonderful thing. It’s just not Mario Cristobal’s thing. He remembers his final game playing at the University of Miami, of course, a clunker after four mostly golden years and can define it in a word if asked.
Knowledge is power and the greatest asset you can acquire in order to compete for a fantasy football championship.
RENTON, Wash. — If you were hoping for candor, you instead got delusions of grandeur.
The streets of New York City are deserted as John McEnroe walks past familiar landmarks and dark alleys on a trip that covers a few miles and many decades.
FORT WORTH, Texas — Social media is the four-letter word that has changed just about everything in our world, up to and including the purity and sanctity of college football.
If Deebo Samuel was a premium pick in your fantasy football league, prepare to be disappointed.
A cargo ship carrying tons of grain from Ukraine was stranded in Istanbul’s Bosporus and had to be rescued early Friday. Turkey’s Directorate General of Coastal Safety tweeted that the 173-meter cargo ship was stuck off the coast of the scenic Bebek neighborhood late Thursday because of a rudder malfunction. The busy strait was closed to traffic for the rescue by coastal safety boats. The Panama-flagged Lady Zehma was towed and the strait re-opened. The cargo ship had departed the Ukrainian port of Chornomorsk under the deal brokered by the United Nations that allows the safe shipment of Ukrainian grain. It’s the first reported incident of malfunction since grain shipments restarted last month.
Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo is announcing $1 billion worth of federal grants for manufacturing, clean energy, farming, biotech and other sectors. The grants announced Friday will go to 21 regional partnerships. The government chose the winners from 529 applicants that vied for grants that were part of last year’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package. The grants include $65 million in California to improve farm production and $25 million for a robotics cluster in Nebraska. Georgia gets $65 million for artificial intelligence. There’s $64 million for lithium-based battery development in New York. West Virginia coal counties would receive $63 million to help with the shift to solar power and find new uses for abandoned mines.
Diplomat: Former British envoy to Myanmar sentenced to 1 year in prison for immigration offense.
Tropical Storm Danielle continues to strengthen in the Atlantic. It is expected to become the first hurricane of an unusually quiet storm season. The storm is not currently a threat to any land. The storm’s maximum sustained winds early Friday were near 70 mph. The U.S. National Hurricane Center says additional strengthening is forecast and the storm is expected to become a hurricane later in the morning. The storm is centered about 890 miles west of the Azores and is moving east near 3 mph. The hurricane center says the storm is expected to meander in the Atlantic over the next few days.
Republicans aren’t seeing as many big checks from one of their most generous benefactors, creating a financial hole for the GOP just as Democrats get a fundraising windfall tied to abortion.
As hurricane season hits its peak, Florida’s top emergency manager is warning of the potential for major electrical problems after a storm hits.
Jacqueline Farias has spent the last five years as a barista at Merit Coffee in Highland Park while working her way through Texas Woman’s University.
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Emory Jones ran for two touchdowns in his desert debut and Arizona State opened its fifth season under coach Herm Edwards with a 40-3 win over FCS Northern Arizona on Thursday night. The Sun Devils needed a few series to jell with 43 new players on their roster. Once they…

The deaths of eight people and injuries to hundreds more after being gored by bulls or calves have put Spain’s immensely popular town summer festivals under scrutiny by politicians and animal rights groups. Authorities are urging revelers to be more careful but they concede there’s not much they can do. Events starring bulls chased by people through town streets are the main attraction for thousands of summer festivities in Spain, particularly in the eastern region of Valencia. Although the world-famous San Fermín bull-running is the No. 1 bull festival, there hasn’t been a death there in 13 years. But it’s smaller fiestas leaving a trail of dead and injured each year that has again drawn criticism.
CHICAGO — Phillip Cline, 59, distinctly remembers the moment he became paralyzed from the neck down. He was run off the road while driving a motorcycle on July 4, 1996, at 1:20 p.m. in Wisconsin.
This Labor Day, we’re thinking about the people who make our picnics possible. People like Marielena, who works in a poultry plant in North Carolina. More than two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, the workers “do not have sufficient time to even disinfect our hands,” says Marielena.
Not for a hundred years has there been such a pronounced drop in U.S. life expectancy, from 79 years in 2019 to 76 just two years later, in 2021, according to federal researchers. It’s easy to chalk this up entirely to the impact of COVID, and the virus was certainly the main culprit, but it…
There’s not much good to say about the U.S. economy today, with out-of-control inflation eroding household incomes and Americans bracing for a recession after gross domestic output shrunk in the first half of 2022.
Tennessee will soon play host to the 39th annual National Rolley Hole Marbles Championship. Rolley hole is a game that involves shooting marbles into small holes in the ground while keeping other teams from making the holes. Players say it involves skill and strategy, and the annual event at Standing Stone State Park is considered the “Super Bowl of Marbles.” According to the state parks, the tournament takes place on Sept. 17. It will include a festival with bluegrass music, food, marble-making demonstrations, a marbles roller coaster and kids’ marbles games.

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