Giving teens a roadmap to a life of mental health​

Mental Health 101 gives teens the roadmap to a mentally healthy life! All teens need practical tools to navigate the difficult journey of life. Written by four leading experts, Mental Health 101 gives teens the roadmap and the tools!


Now available in Spanish!

¡Ahora disponible en español!

Watch an Interview with Lead Author Tom Thelen

The Top 10 Goals of Mental Health 101

  1. Mental Health 101 teaches teens how to talk with their parents or guardians when they need support, as well as how to reach out to other trusted adults or mental health professionals if needed.
  2. Mental Health 101 is non-controversial. The book does not promote any controversial ideas, political agendas, or religious agendas. The book promotes personal responsibility and healthy life choices.
  3. Mental Health 101 teaches positive behaviors and mental wellbeing skills like respect, responsibility, resiliency, and coping skills for stress and anxiety.
  4. Mental Health 101 prevents at-risk and self-destructive behaviors like self-harm, suicide, depression, and anxiety.
  5. Mental Health 101 makes a clear distinction between temporary feelings of anxiety or depression (which are common for all teens) and longer forms of clinical depression, which can only be diagnosed by a mental health professional.
  6. Mental Health 101 shows students how to get help if someone is having a mental health crisis, such as a panic attack or suicidal thoughts. The program also educates students on the most common mental illnesses, learning disorders, and disabilities.
  7. Mental Health 101 teaches students how to have respectful conversations, even when they disagree with someone.
  8. Mental Health 101 is non-judgmental, and it allows students to participate at their own comfort level.
  9. Mental Health 101 can be taught as a Tier-1 class for all middle school and high school students.
  10. Mental Health 101 is a research-based program that will soon become evidence-based, as we study the positive impact it has on school culture.

Meet The Authors

Certified Trainer in Youth Mental Health First Aid
PhD in Counselor Education from St. Mary’s University
PhD in Psychology from Rice University in Houston
PhD in Psychology from Yeshiva University in New York

Mental Health 101 Table of Contents

  1. Meet the Authors
  2. What is Mental Health?
  3. Self-Esteem
  4. Mental Illness & Injury
  5. Coping with Grief & Loss
  6. Bullying
  7. Emotional Intelligence
  8. Empathy
  9. Basic Human Needs
  10. Self-Care
  11. Healthy Living
  12. Support Systems
  13. Personality
  14. Trauma
  15. Boundaries
  16. Depression
  17. Anxiety
  18. Coping Skills
  19. Suicide Prevention
  20. Mental Conditions & Disorders
  21. Autism
  22. Learning Disabilities
  23. Addiction & Self Harm
  24. Responsibility
  25. Resiliency
  26. Becoming Your Best Self

Endorsement from Principal Maurice Williams

Amazing Resource for Teens
Reviewed in the United States
on February 4, 2021
Verified Purchase
Amazing resource for educators and parents. This book offers great coping strategies and ideas that can help guide children through this difficult time. This would be a great book for schools to provide their students with, as the strategies and skills taught in this book are invaluable and can be applied to many aspects of life.
Great book! A much overlooked topic in a time when it's needed most.
Reviewed in the United States
on December 23, 2020
Verified Purchase
You can tell that Tom is someone who actually interacts with kids at all stages of life on a regular basis. He doesn’t just talk about mental health theoretically, but as something he deals with on a regular basis. – Every point considers the long term impact of the choices kids make, and the choices we make with them.
First aid in young mental health
Reviewed in the United States
on December 18, 2020
Verified Purchase
This book could not be more timely. Our kids need emotional awareness and the tools to improve mental health now more than ever. This book is helpful in general, but this pandemic has brought everything to a critical state. Help break down stigmas and strengthen your mental health today!
A healthy and emotional surprise
Reviewed in the United States
on December 29, 2020
Verified Purchase
This book could not be more timely. Our kids need emotional awareness and the tools to improve mental health now more than ever. This book is helpful in general, but this pandemic has brought everything to a critical state. Help break down stigmas and strengthen your mental health today!
Great for everyone - as a parent and teacher, it did not disappoint.
Reviewed in the United States
on December 31, 2020
Verified Purchase
You don't have to be a teen to appreciate this book. I didn't get much in terms of mental health education when I was the age that I could've really used it...and that was without a pandemic! I have a couple of teen cousins that are struggling right now, and I got this for them and read it myself. Super easy reading. Not a lot of crazy science talk, and the critical science that was included was interesting to read and written in plain English. Love the personal stories shared by all the authors. Just a really great experience, and I recommend that everyone give it a shot - especially if you've been struggling to deal in all of this mess.
Amazing resource for all! Check it out!
Reviewed in the United States
on February 12, 2020
Verified Purchase
This is a great resource for young and old, alike. I have a family member who have used this as a resource at a community center for programs on mental health, coaches working with teenage athletes, I have provided a copy to all of my siblings and their families, and I have read and used this book as a resource for my own family. We are all dealing with our own mighty battles and this is a great tool to help with those challenging times, especially in our world today.
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Image of top rated youth speakers on bullying prevention and mental health Tom Thelen

A Message From Tom Thelen

Hi, I’m Tom Thelen, lead author of Mental Health 101 for Teens. When I was a teen, I was overwhelmed with stress and anxiety. I was going through bullying at school and having trouble with my parents at home. (In other words, I was a fairly normal teen!) I just had some blind spots and bad habits. I was insecure, so I tried too hard to be the funny guy. When people hurt me, I shoved it down in my mind, and I didn’t let anything go. To summarize: I was a mess.

But I didn’t stay that way forever! I connected with my English Teacher, Mrs. Burdick, and she really helped change my way of thinking. The biggest eye opener was realizing that I can only change myself (not other people). So why not do that?!! With a choice between staying bitter or getting better, I chose the latter.

I got help. I got counseling. I started making some small changes in my behavior (stuff we’ll talk about in the book). Over the next year I basically became a new person… a stronger, kinder, better version of myself. I was less reactive to bullying, so most of my bullies just faded out. I was more respectful to my parents, and I started to feel fully alive again.

My life never became perfect (and it still isn’t perfect today) but it is a GREAT LIFE. And you have the same opportunity… to make slow incremental change over time, so your life grows and blossoms into a better version of you. That’s what Mental Health 101 is all about.

As a writing team of four authors, we come from different backgrounds and upbringings, but we all have one mission for the book: to give teens absolutely everything we have… every insight, every piece of advice, and every skill we wish we had back when we were young. So please, join us on the journey, and dive into our book, Mental Health 101 for Teens!

And if you’re an educator, we hope you’ll purchase our full curriculum and teacher’s guide, so you can use Mental Health 101 as a core class at your school!

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