"A problem shared is a problem halved."
We’ve all heard that phrase at some time or another, and although it sounds like the worlds’ biggest cliché – especially if it’s you that has the ‘problem’, it’s very true.
The easiest and quite frankly British thing to do is to pretend to the outside world that everything’s rosy and couldn’t be better when in fact that couldn’t be further from the truth. But bottling things up is a recipe for disaster and being unable to open up about the things that stress us out can lead down the road to disaster.
That’s why Mental Health Awareness Week is so important.
Now, when you think of the words Mental Health it may conjure up all sorts of images and emotions – but mental health problems can affect anyone. Research has shown that two thirds of us will experience a mental health problem at some time in our lives.
Mental Health Awareness is a campaign that encourages people to open up about issues affecting them whilst also raising awareness and funds to help people cope. The theme for this years’ campaign is stress.
Everyone knows what it feels like to be stressed, let’s face it, it’s part of everyday life isn’t it? But the big problem with stress is that if you’re struggling to cope and it overwhelms you – it can lead to much bigger problems down the line.
Stress can lead to anxiety, depression, and in some cases self -harm and suicide. Mental Health Awareness Week is all about educating people on how they can tackle stress and improve their mental health.
So how can you get involved?
The campaigns national fundraiser is called Curry and a Chaat. The aim is simple, get together with friends, enjoy a tasty curry, raise awareness about mental health and raise some money whilst doing so.
And there are also some fantastic events taking place locally too.
Barrow Library will be holding a couple of events during the week.
Firstly they have their Haiku writing session on Monday 14th between 10.30am – 12.30pm. It’s a therapeutic two hour session, followed by homemade cake and tea and coffee. Further details can be found here https://www.thebestof.co.uk/local/barrow-and-furness/events/feature/haiku-japanese-poetry-writing-session/
They also have a Mental Health awareness coffee morning and Yarn Bomb event planned for Friday 18th May in conjunction with Mind In Furness starting at 10.30am. Here you can chat over tea, coffee and cake, helping to raise awareness about mental health issues whilst enjoying the creative talents of Walney School. Take a look here: https://www.thebestof.co.uk/local/barrow-and-furness/events/feature/mental-health-awareness-coffee-morning-and-yarn-bomb/
Ulverston Library is holding a tea and talk session on Thursday 17th May at 10am where everyone is welcome. Conversations can be had with local partners, and members of the community to identify resources that are available locally to help manage and reduce stress.
Mind will be looking at dealing with stress in the workplace, offering strategies and systems that help to create a less stressful environment for both employers and employees.
Mind work with a range of organisations helping them with their approach and awareness to mental health. You can see the strategies and ideas that they have for businesses to implement here https://www.mind.org.uk/workplace/mental-health-awareness-week-2018/ allowing the workforce to cope better with day-to-day demands and pressures.
To find out more about Mental Health Awareness Week and how to get involved, please visit https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/mental-health-awareness-week