Our modern society in the U.S. often puts the spotlight on physical health rather than mental health. In recent years, many people have worked to raise mental health awareness, but there is still work to be done in order to help our society see the need for mental health resources.
Raising mental health awareness could lead to better access to mental health resources (therapy, mental health days, hotlines, medication, and more), people being more willing to seek therapy and medication, and helping people speak more freely about the feelings they battle with daily. Below are some reputable ways you can help to raise mental health awareness in your own circle and reduce the stigma.
Share Reliable Resources And Hotlines
As the internet and more social media platforms take over our lives, there will be a plethora of information to sort through. Sharing mental health statistics and resources that are accurate can be tricky. When you are sharing resources with others, make sure that it emphasizes that mental health is a spectrum. Not all mental illnesses are the same and not all people experience the same symptoms.
Reliable resources should be nationally recognized institutions or those with neurological or psychological degrees. Some resources that are factual and prevalent include:
- The 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline
- Veterans Crisis Line
- The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
- National Alliance on Mental Health
- Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
- Anxiety and Depression Association of America
Resources in Utah and around Ogden include:
- Office of Substance Use and Mental Health (SUMH)
- Mobile Crisis Outreach Team (MCOT)
- SafeUT Crisis Chat (app available for download)
- Live On– Utah’s statewide suicide prevention and awareness campaign
Partner With Others
There are many established organizations that are working to raise mental health awareness and provide care to different patients. In order to expand your reach, ask if you can partner with organizations to help bring resources to your school or workplace.
Many of these organizations host community events as well. Attending these events can help raise money for more resources, bring awareness to the event so more people can attend in the future, or give you resources to help improve your own mental health.
If you want to do your own work to spread mental health awareness, try hosting a 5k walk/run, fundraisers, or a yoga/mindfulness meditation group. During these events, you can raise funds and tell people about mental health coping mechanisms.
Use Social Media And Graphics To Attract Interest
Social media is all about visually appealing content and mentally engaging the audience. Infographics are a good way to share numbers and facts while still keeping your social media looking aesthetically pleasing.
Many social media accounts share graphics and text posts that are easy to share with your profile or story. These can help raise mental health awareness because those who struggle will feel less alone. Sharing facts can help your friends and family learn more about mental illness from the comfort of their homes. Sharing posts may help spark an interest in people doing their own in-depth research as well.
Plant Seeds For The Future
In order to help mental health awareness efforts continue into the future, it is important to teach the younger generation about their own mental health. Implementing school programs about mental health and boundaries can help foster more healthy relationships in their adult years.
Providing after-school support groups or recommending age-appropriate therapy are other ways you can help foster the mental well-being of younger peers. Teaching at an early age will help create lasting change.
Share Stories Of Success
There are many people who seek different treatments for their mental health and have found healing. Sharing success stories of different therapy methods or changing diet and behaviors could help those who are struggling mentally.
Some ideas you could share include:
- Your personal experience with therapy
- Stories of those who feel medication helped them
- Organizations that have made contributions to raise mental health awareness
- Stories of how the change to the suicide and crisis line has helped
- Highlight different prominent people who have coped with their mental health
- Show what you do to take care of your mental health
- Read and review books about mental health
Take Proactive Steps To Improve Your Own Mental Health
While healing is not linear, taking the steps to improve your mental health can help others feel inspired to seek help. This doesn’t mean you always have to pretend to be mentally well, but you can share tips and struggles from your own life and how you have overcome them.
If you are in therapy, ask your therapist about ways you can raise mental health awareness without sacrificing your mental health. They may be able to even share some well-researched tips to share on your social media or with friends.
Our therapists and counselors at Ogden Psychological Services are ready to help you no matter where you are on your mental health journey. We provide individual counseling, couples counseling, neurofeedback therapy, and more. Each patient gets unique treatment from our team to help them achieve their goals.