Hey everyone! I’m really excited to share this blog post with you because its all about normalizing mental health! As you may or may not know, May is Mental Health Awareness month! I make it part of my blog’s purpose to spread awareness and share my struggles with all of you in the hopes that it will help at least one person not feel so alone. But today’s blog post is more for those that don’t suffer from mental health dilemmas but want to help those who do!
Mental health is slowly becoming a topic that isn’t taboo or brushed under the rug. But we still have a long way to go! Normalizing something that’s important to all of us (we all have a state of mental health!) can make such a difference in our society! If you aren’t sure of how to promote awareness and normalize mental health conversations, here are some tips!
Watch your language
“I need my crazy meds today.” I’ve caught myself saying that before and its not ok. I’m not crazy. I need medication to balance my brain chemicals. That’s it. Avoid saying things to others that might infer their “craziness.” Questions like “did you take your happy pills?” should be replaced with “did you take you medication?” My medication doesn’t make me happy necessarily, it simply keeps my mind healthy!
Understanding what happens in the mind to cause anxiety, depression, and even suicide is important. Learn about mental illnesses and why they occur. Share what you know with others. Recognize the signs of poor mental health and offer a listening ear to those who may need it.
Share Your story
I was at a dinner the other night with some of David’s business acquaintances. Another lady and I were talking about medical diagnosis and things of that nature when I mentioned that I was seeing a doctor to get help with my depression and anxiety. She looked surprised and quietly admitted that she’s been on medication for years. All of the sudden we were sharing stories and opening up about our struggles. It was liberating! And it felt normal, not shameful. Share your story if you have one and if you don’t, listen to someone else’s and engage with them.
Normalize it in the workplace
More and more workplaces are hosting clinics and “lunch and learns” to talk about mental health in the workplace. If your company hasn’t hosted such an event, suggest it! Ask your HR department to bring in an expert to talk about self-care and helping others who may struggle. Starting this conversation is one of the best ways to normalize mental health care in your work place.
Share on social media
If there’s anything my generation has learned on social media its that change can often start with a simple post. Update your Facebook status recognizing May as being Mental Health Awareness month. Remind professional acquaintances on LinkedIn by sharing a scholarly article. Share this blog post with friends and family to keep the conversation going!
Mental health is so important and recognizing its impact on our society is a step in the right direction!