Time to Change is a movement that aims to end mental health discrimination in all its forms. Thursday 7th February 2019 is Time to Talk Day, part of an initiative to get us talking more openly about our mental health, even if that just means a few minutes of honest talking and listening over a cup of tea with a friend or colleague.
While one in four of us are estimated to experience mental health problems at some point, many of us still find it taboo to talk about issues such as depression, anxiety & panic disorders and addiction. This can make it hard for those affected to recognise what is happening, reach out for support and engage with the many effective solutions that exist to help them get well and stay well. Talking more openly about how we think, feel and what we do is a key way to turn the tide.
Good mental health and well-being are core to our sense of connection, motivation to be who we are and drive to make a positive impact in the world. As a therapist with an interest in mind and body fitness and wellbeing I can see how valuable it is to look after and listen not only to the body but also the mind. My own passion for yoga, circus and meditation stem from this, much as I adore physical therapy and endless studying as well!
It struck me that the Five Ways to Wellbeing*, simple strategies to enhance mental and physical wellbeing, fit well with the Time to Change campaign and help show why Time to Talk is such a beneficial idea. The Five Ways to Wellbeing include:
- Connect – Talk & Listen, Be There, Feel Connected
- Give – Your Time, Your Words, Your Presence
- Be Active – Do What You Can, Enjoy What You Do, Move Your Mood
- Take Notice – Remember The Simple Things That Give You Joy
- Keep Learning – Embrace New Experiences, See Opportunities, Surprise Yourself
Connecting and Giving to ourselves and to others can make a world of difference, especially when it comes to our mental health. This February 7th how about marking Time to Talk Day and joining the move towards better mental health awareness for all? There are plenty of ideas for how to bring Time to Talk Day to your workplace, sports club or community at the Time to Change website here.
May you find many ways to your own personal best mental and physical health!
* In 2008 the New Economics Foundation (NEF) on behalf of Foresight set out 5 strategies to improve personal wellbeing. These became known in the UK and other countries as the Five Ways to Wellbeing. Evidence suggests that small improvements in wellbeing can help decrease some mental health problems (e.g. anxiety and depression) and help people flourish, performing at their best.