May is Mental Health Awareness Month
Social anxiety disorder. Obsessive compulsive disorder. Major depressive disorder. Borderline personality disorder. Post-traumatic stress disorder. Generalized anxiety disorder. These labels describe a few mental health challenges. You might have experienced some of these (or other) difficulties yourself, or know someone who has. You, and they, are not alone.
As May 2023 begins, so does Mental Awareness Month – a time to raise awareness, reduce stigma, and promote importance of mental health and well-being. This year’s Mental Health Awareness Month is particularly important, as the COVID-19 pandemic brought to light the critical need for mental health support and resources during tough times.
Even the most confident and capable individuals amongst us can be struggling with mental health issues. It is essential to prioritize our mental health, just as we do our physical health, and seek help when we need it. We must create a culture around ourselves that reduces the stigma around mental health and promotes awareness of the resources available to help us overcome the struggles. Remember, it’s okay to not be okay, and there’s no shame in asking for help.
Self Care Tips
Find help to
Develop plans for solving problems.
Feel stronger in the face of challenges.
Change behaviors that hold you back.
Look at ways of thinking that affect how you feel.
Heal pains from your past.
Figure out your goals.
Connect with others
Build connection, which is an antidote to stress.
Create increased vulnerability with someone else, which strengthens a bond.
Foster the feeling that you are not alone.
Provide a space to gain perspective on the difficulty you’re experiencing.
When providing support to others
Be an active listener.
Be careful not to compare; it can make someone feel like their pain isn’t valid.
Do not judge; put your personal opinions and biases aside.
Ask what you can do to support them.
Keep your word; when a person is struggling, the last thing they need is to feel abandoned by someone else.