Welcome to the inside of my brain!

Jim Flannery

I started my blog as a means to develop my seemingly rapid and disconnected thoughts into a communicable, organized form. I also find writing is a useful exercise for building emotional resilience in sharing these thoughts with the public. I find it frightening to be so exposed, yet also exciting to see what kind of response I get from people. Plus, it’s revealing to look backward to reflect on what topics I’ve written about over time as my story unfolds.


Ex-Mental Patient Speaks Out in New Hip-Hop Album About Hartford’s Institute of Living

October 14, 2022

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Ex-Mental Patient Speaks Out in New Hip-Hop Album About Hartford’s Institute of Living Describes Experience as “Torture” and Says Hartford’s Not the Only Place This Happens HARTFORD, Conn., October 14, 2022 – Connecticut native Jim Flannery surprised listeners with the release of his debut hip hop album, Sorry It’s Not Funny.  The…

Comedy, Hip-Hop, and Activism: My Interview with Mad in America

October 12, 2022

In anticipation of  the release of my hip-hop album, Sorry It’s Not Funny, I was interviewed by Karin Jervert of Mad in America. You may listen to the interview in your browser below or on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify Podcasts and YouTube. The full transcript is available on the MadInAmerica.com website.

I Hear Voices Now

August 25, 2022

It’s been a while since I published anything.  My life has not been ordinary for the last couple years and finding the right words to describe my experience has been a challenge. I’ll try to keep it short, otherwise, this article will never get completed. In mid-2020, I had experiences which I, at first, believed…

21 days trailer after the war

21 DAYS: After the War

October 21, 2020

21 DAYS After the War Sagnik Roy and I partnered to write and run an “alternate reality” game during November 2020 that blends self-directed education and physics into a unique adventure for adolescents.  The aim was to create a “book camp” of sorts to help young people transition from conventional schooling to self-directed education.  The…

My testimony for the Connecticut Valley Hospital Whiting Task Force

October 20, 2020

A PDF of my written testimony as well as the written testimony of others is available on the CVH Task Force web page under the October 20, 2020 tab: You can see a video of some of the other testimonies from the Hearing on the Connecticut Network website.       Testimony for CVH Whiting Task…

Invitation to participate in MAD PRIDE WORLD 2020!

September 30, 2020

Thank you to Nehchal for creating this promo video!   CALL TO ACTION In solidarity with MAD PRIDE SEOUL, I am reaching out to psychiatric survivors around the world to invite you to participate in a livestream event on October 10, 2020.  (NOTE: Event moved to October 31!) I need you to submit a video…

My Connecticut

August 1, 2020

When I was 26, I took a photograph of the San Diego skyline at night. My purpose was just to capture an image that could be used for the homepage of the American Relight website. Through pure luck, I discovered I don’t suck. That was enough encouragement for me to feel confident enough to submit…

State of the Startup: July 2019

July 1, 2020

Note to the reader: this article was written in July of 2019 and was intended to be published in July of 2020.  Since I was too uncomfortable with some of the content even after a year, it’s being published now on June 3, 2021, with a few redactions.  One thing which appears to be potentially…

Making Self-Directed Education Accessible to ALL

June 28, 2020

Making Self-Directed Education Accessible to All Why? | Watch the Video | Browse Accessibility Solutions | Contribute “Accessibility” means very different things to different people.  In June 2020, I presented at the Alternative Education Resources Organization annual conference on the topic of Making Self-Directed Education Accessible to ALL.  Please enjoy the presentation and consider contribution to…

leave school what teachers can't tell you

My new audiobook app, ‘LEAVE SCHOOL: what teachers can’t tell you’, is finally available!

May 12, 2020

So excited to announce that my new audiobook app, ‘LEAVE SCHOOL: what teachers can’t tell you’, is finally available!  LEAVE SCHOOL helps teens who are frustrated by school to thrive without school by pursuing self-directed learning.  Get it at LEAVE-SCHOOL.com There are so many people to thank for supporting me in creating this project.  Though…

Using Technology to Facilitate Self-Directed Learning – my interview on the Learning by Living podcast

April 17, 2020

I was recently invited to appear on Gina Riley and Kevin Stuverson’s podcast, Learning by Living.  I discuss my work with the Peer Unschooling Network and a mobile application I am releasing soon called “LEAVE SCHOOL: what teachers can’t tell you.”   (Note that in the interview, I refer to the app as being called “Curricu-Dumb”…

Finding common ground between our movements: psychiatric survivors and the broader disability community

November 21, 2019

This essay was included in the November 22, 2019 newsletter for MindFreedom International, a non-profit organization that fights for human rights in mental health. I was recently invited by my new friend Tom Olin to attend an event in Washington, DC titled ‘Humanity of Connection: A Celebration of Leadership and Empowerment within the Disability Community’. …

My Cool Project Bucket List

September 27, 2019

Recently, I ran a workshop for a group of teens where we went through a brainstorming process for generating project ideas.  I thought it’d be fun to share a list of my own dream projects, all of which I hope to complete before I die.  I guess that makes this my “project bucket list”.  As…


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