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MYST 40: Alastair McDermott: Tackling Fears by Asking for Help

Alastair McDermott and Anne-Marie, on their cycle around Ireland.
Alastair McDermott and Anne-Marie, on their cycle around Ireland.


Alastair and I talked via Skype for over 90 minutes. Alastair is committed to supporting the fight against suicide and helping bring depression out of the shadows and make the topic a common and routine discussion. We recorded this talk on July 31, 2014 which was 12 days before American actor Robin Williams took his life due in part to depression. Alastair was concerned that this talk would be considered building on that event, but in reality, this topic needs to be open and honest. People commit suicide every day. We hope that his participation in that Irish bike ride will help people open up and talk before taken final actions.

Alastair McDermott is an engineer at heart, but he is also able to talk to people, to help people see their options and to take action!

Earlier this year, he, his girlfriend Anne-Marie and over 2-3000 other riders hopped on their bicycles and rode around Ireland, in a “Cycle Against Suicide” ride. He rode it, without prior training. Are you this committed to an idea? Could you do this?

The Route Map for "Cycle Against Suicide"
The Route Map for “Cycle Against Suicide”

Alastair recommends these books:

You can reach Alastair by email amd@websitedoctor.com

His company is www.websitedoctor.com

On Twitter he is @WebsiteDoctor and on Facebook  fb/WebsiteDoc

Alastair loves this meal:

Roast Leg of Lamb
Roast Leg of Lamb with Potatoes


Music composed and performed by Jason Shaw, courtesy of Audionautix.com

Voiceover courtesy of Matt Young. Matt is a professional voiceover artist. If you have any need of voiceover work, for your podcast, radio spot, or whatever, you can reach Matt by a variety of methods.

He is on LinkedIn. On Twitter. And Google+. And you can read his really nice, contemplative blog.

6 thoughts on “MYST 40: Alastair McDermott: Tackling Fears by Asking for Help

  1. Alastair, Thank you for exposing depression & suicide. Our dearly loved son took his life in the same fashion as Robin Williams. He told me I wouldn’t like the movie…”The Dead Poet Society”. I think a young man hanged himself in that movie! Robin Williams’ death brought a lot of the pain back to me that I lived through after the loss of our son! I had the opportunity to speak to my Dr. about all of this & it was very beneficial. I feel very sad for Robin’s children! Thanks again!

    • Nancy, thank you for sharing your story, and sharing your pain with us. I am so glad that Alastair’s talk was able to directly help you, and I know that it helped many others, too. And thank you for moving up to the Varsity Squad! I am glad that you and I are working together!

  2. Hi Nancy,

    I know from talking with many of the folks on the Cycle with the same experience as you that talking helped them immeasurably. Keep talking about it with your doctor, and also see if you can talk about it with your family and friends. They may be worried about broaching the subject with you. Forget about stigmas or social taboos, it is crucial to be open and honest about these issues. In years to come, the stigma will probably be NOT talking about such vital issues.

    Remember that ultimately people want to help you – that’s programmed into us. And you talking might even help someone else who is afraid to talk about their own difficulties.

    One of the things that Jim said to the kids at all the schools we visited on the Cycle was “Turn around and look at the hundreds of people in orange jerseys all around you. You can talk to any one of them about anything that’s on your mind.” He was absolutely correct, and it’s one of my favourite things about the jersey, this huge visual of support that people cannot miss.

    Nancy, your support may not be wearing orange jerseys right now, but there are many, many people around you who will provide that support if you can tell them you’d like to talk.

    Thanks for sharing your story. Feel free to contact me privately if you want to talk further – email me at amd AT websitedoctor.com .


    • Alastair, I am so glad that your message reached Nancy and helped her. It is safe to assume that many others were equally moved by your words. Thank you for your time and for sharing on this show! Trevor

  3. Hi Trevor,

    Here’s the book details for you:

    “Getting Things Done” by David Allen

    The reason I think this book is important is because it explains why we feel overwhelmed by information overload, and explains some simple (and later, more advanced) ways to deal with it. Even just reading the first 15-30 pages to understand some of the basic concepts is useful for anybody who has an email address.

    (That’s an affiliate link to the EFF by the way – an organisation doing crucial work for our rights online.)


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