Jenna Brown

Jenna Brown

The Pursuit of Joy

Joy = Noun: a feeling of great pleasure or happiness.

First of all, I would like to thank every one of my friends, family and all of the new people I have forged relationships with on the internet for providing me with encouragement and support on my mental health journey so far. It’s meant the world to me to find a way to express myself, have these deep conversations and feel confident enough to share them on public platforms along the way.

I have been contemplating The J Word lately, what it is, what it means to me and what it means to the people along for the ride. It started off as a blog, a tiny little website on the internet where I would share my thoughts and damn near crawl out of my own skin when I hit the post button. Coming up 3 years it’s grown into a full blog website where I have shared a lot about my thought processes, a Facebook page, Instagram, a women’s Facebook group and my favourite of all – the Podcast. Thousands of people, mainly women, listen to read and engage with the things that I share and it brings me great joy to know that people can engage and relate.

The J Word NZ, has evolved over time and so have I. I have learned a LOT and had so many wonderful conversations but I don’t really feel the same way as I did when I first started to write. When I go back and read some of my older blogs they feel really heavy. I feel a lot lighter now.

The J Word NZ 2.0

I have decided that I would like to take it in a bit of a different direction moving forward, so it moves along with where I am in life. One of the things that give me a lot of joy in life is humour, the funny bone runs deep on both sides of my family and it’s something I would like to explore a lot more within my writing, podcast and even perhaps some art I have been working on.

Basically, I want to confront the big life topics, dive deep and talk about the real stuff but rather than muting my need to giggle, make jokes and use humour as a coping tool I want to embrace it and set it free. I am still very focused on mental health, but I would like to create content and share my stories in a fun and relatable way, using my arsenal of Dad jokes, puns and satire.

It’s a little bit of a direction change from the serious and some people won’t be into it and that’s OK, it’s kind of why I am sending out this “pre-warning” of what’s going on.

Want to come along for a joy ride?

I would love love love you to continue on the journey with me. To me, the “J” in the J word stands for lots of things: Joy, Journey, Jenna, Jokes and Jovial. You can expect to start seeing a little less educational or inspirational content from me and a little bit more of my own flavour.

If you would share with me what you would like to see more of, please, let me know. Unless it’s dancing Tik Tok because I’m not quite there yet lol. I see The J Word NZ as a bit of a community now, a place where you can come and hang out and share your thoughts with me.

At the beginning of the year, I decided that I would cancel the podcast, but I really missed it. I think I had just run the course of the way I was producing it and wanted to mix it up a bit. So… exciting news, I have got it back up and running and my wonderful friend Crez has put her hand up to co-host the entire second season with me. It will be less interview style and more Crez and I having yarns about our different life experiences and dishing out totally unsolicited armchair advice on life.

I am really excited about how this is going to play out because we have some similar lived experiences and although we are both riddled with anxiety we are also quick to use copious amounts of humour to brush off the serious. You can expect a lot of giggles and probably inappropriate one-liners up ahead in season 2 of unpacking mental health. Crez is great, you are going to love her, I promise.

I’ll be taking great care not to be offensive, rude or taking away the seriousness of the problems associated with mental health but I believe there is a place between the clinical and the “let’s just ignore it and hope it goes away” mindset, somewhere in the middle where it’s ok to laugh at ourselves, learn and grow together.

In an ideal world, I would like to create a kind space where different points of view can be shared and embraced. Let’s see how it all works out.

I guess I just wanted to give everyone a little heads up that things won’t look exactly the same moving forward. We will still be talking about being a Mum, living with anxiety, depression and all the weird shit that goes on in life.


Disclaimer: The J Word NZ and its media content are created based on my own experiences and opinions, as well as those individuals who share their stories with me. I do not have any formal medical or mental health qualifications. If you are experiencing any issues with mental health, please consult your doctor or a medical health professional for advice.

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