Every year on October 10th, the World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes World Mental Health Day. Mental health is something to which everyone around the world can relate. A mental health condition can be ignited by the loss of a loved one, a traumatic accident, or even being bullied or picked on. Whatever the reason, it is important to extend a helping hand as a friend, family, or community to let people know that it is okay and a sign of strength to seek psychological help.
This year, the theme of World Mental Health Day is “psychological first aid.” This is something that everyone around the world can embrace. Making it the theme this year encourages us to shed a light on mental health issues, how people can tackle them, and how they can feel more confident about seeking help. Having a mental illness can affect relationships and everyday tasks, but it is advised to seek help soon so that you can act early.
Nobody is immune to a mental health condition. This is why it’s important to always take a step back, take a breath, and examine your own mental health and wellbeing. Acknowledge the emotions, stress, or struggles you’re feeling and make a promise to yourself that you will not ignore it. Ignoring whatever is affecting you can only worsen your mental condition, or even overall health.
Psychological first aid does not mean that you must go to a hospital. While that is an option some people choose, psychological first aid can be anything from talking to a friend, seeking therapy, or even attending NA or AA meetings. There are many avenues to take, but it’s about finding the best remedy that works for you.
If someone you know has expressed certain feelings or worry about his/her own mental health, be there for them and extend a helping hand. Let them know that you are there and that there are many ways to get help. There’s nothing embarrassing about mental illness or seeking help for it.