03-10-2016 10:02 PM
What we have learnt tonight:
What is mental health and why is it important?
According to the World Health Organisation, mental health is the state of wellbeing in which every person can cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and contribute to their community (WHO, 2014).
Mental health means being in a headspace where you can feel things appropriately and have the life, relationships, and experiences that you want and can cope with the usual stress and experiences of day to day life without being impacted by symptoms of mental illness. Mental health includes things like having self-awareness, self-compassion, resilience and being able to do everyday tasks and function in the way you want to.
Mental health is important because it impacts every part of your life and the way you perceive and react to things! We all need to be mentally healthy to live our best and most productive life and knowing what mental health is and how to maintain it is really important.
What kind of challenges can/have you and other people with mental illness face?
There can be different 'types' of challenges... mental, physical and social
Mental – eg. the emotional and mental symptoms of the illness itself, unable to enjoy things, feeling downright miserable, confused, angry, scared…
Physical – fatigue, changes in sleep, eating and weight changes, breathlessness, headache, general body aches...
Social – work, study and relationships difficulties, don’t want to leave the house, social challenges, stigma and people's prejudice and ignorance surrounding mental illness
Mental Health Month: Learn and Grow. What does this mean to you?
We touched on themes of education, application, skill development, sharing knowledge and skills, self-discovery, facing challenges and learning/growing through experience.
How can we learn and grow in our own mental health?
- Using online communities like Reach Out and supporting each other!
- Talk, talk, talk!
- Asking for help when we need it and being willing to receive it
- Be open about our issues and encourage other people to
- Learning new skills, including from others who have had similar experiences and being empathetic
- Regularly self care
- Making goals that you care about, big or small, for today, tomorrow or years into the future!
The 4 key themes of the campaign this year on how to learn and grow in mental health are:
- Engage your mind
- Learn ways to stress less
- Listen to different views
- Share your passions
How can we encourage others/society to learn and grow in the area of mental health and what kinds of things do you think people need to know?
- Educating on what kind of mental health issues there are, how to support someone going through it and how to seek help for yourself and others.
- Programs or and awareness in places like schools, unis and sport centres
- Raising awareness - mental illness is common, important and there's no shame in it. Help is out there in many places and it's ok to ask for it.
- Improving overall understanding of mental illness and its treatments
- How to maintain mental health and how to recognise mental illness, including prevention and early detection.
- Normalising it a bit more so that people are willing to seek help sooner and can have larger support systems.
- Reducing stigma
- Help others learn, support others and be open about our own experiences.
What are some strategies we can use to deal with tough times?
So many ways and can depend on personal preference! Some mentioned include (minor repetition intentional!):
- Talk to someone x527
- Determine if there's a cause to the tough time
- Problem solve/do something about it if we can or adjust our reaction/response to it
- Maintain healthy physical, mental and social habits
- Talk to someone if we're not having success dealing with it on our own or it's impacting safety
- Social activities like talking to and spending time with family/friends
- Physical activities such as meditation, exercising.
- If you're ever stuck, utilise your community resources - counsellors, psychologists, ReachOut, headspace etc.
- play guitar
- Drink tea
- Write down everything you're thinking and feeling
- Do some other enjoyable activity
- Take a shower
- Get outside/get some sunshine
- Go for a walk
- Go to the beach
- Watch a movie
- Get enough and not too much sleep
- Hang out with pets/animals
- Problem solve
- Reminisce on the good times...
- Also talk to someone
03-10-2016 10:04 PM
So that about wraps up our time today. Thanks for a great discussion everyone! If you or anyone reading this later have anything further you want to say, please do so!
05-10-2016 04:03 PM
Just wanted to jump on here and let you know what an amazing job you did facilitating the "unofficial" GR @Randomness - and the way you were supported by all the other wonderful builders we have on here now. Some of you have a lot of experience with GR others I haven't really seen around yet but it's really inspiring for me as a mod to see you guys taking control!! You smashed it!!