Mental Health Awareness Month Reminder: It’s Okay to Ask for Help
Feature Image: Stacy Sullivan
Self-care, therapy, mental health.
These words have grown in popularity over the last few years, whether it’s in the news, social media influencers posting about it or maybe it’s the topic of an episode of your favorite podcast. These buzzwords can sometimes paint a romanticized picture of everyone achieving and doing things “in the name of self-care.”
With this over saturation of carefully curated ideas of self-care, which I am definitely guilty of feeding into, we seem to think that a holistic approach only helpful and glamorous option.
Do you want to know something that isn’t so glamorous?
According to the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI), 1 in 5 adults experience mental illnesses in America and nearly 60% of adults went untreated for any mental health issues. Adults, however, are not the only demographic affected by mental illnesses. About 50% of youth did not receive treatment.
As we work to address the serious gaps in our mental health system, it is important to not only continue to provide people access to the proper services and treatments but allow them to feel as though they have a supportive and secure outlet.
This Mental Health Awareness Month, I want to remind you that it’s okay to ask for help and that you’re not alone.
Why Is It Hard To Ask For Help?
Being a human can be hard. We experience so many things, and we don’t always know how to handle them in a healthy way. Mental health stigmas create a huge barrier that deters people from speaking out. But what is a stigma? A stigma is a mark of disgrace that sets a person apart from others. Usually when a stigma is placed upon a person, society sees them as weak or incapable of living a “normal” life.
How To Reach Out
Searching for help is often the first step in the right direction when it comes to your mental health. It’s common to feel unsure, stressed, and even embarrassed. But it’s always okay to ask for help—even if you’re not completely sure where to start. If you know someone who is battling with mental health, it is important to make sure that you listen, offer help, and to remind them that it’s okay for them to feel what they are feeling.
Work With A Mental Health Provider
Whether you’re seeing a counselor, therapist, or a psychiatrist it’s important to find the right professional help for you.
Confide In A Friend Or Family Member
Many people feel nervous talking about their feelings to close friends or family in fear of disappointing or upsetting them. But it can sometimes help talking to someone you trust, because they can give you encouragement and support while helping you find information.
Seek Peer Support
You know the feeling when someone just understands where you’re coming from on a certain topic? We naturally feel connected to people who share common interests allowing us to feel comfortable enough to open up. Peer support brings together people with similar experiences and can provide you with even more self-care and support options.
We live in a fast-paced world. Smartphones have made it easier to stay in touch with people, organize a busy schedule, and order take-out with the use of an emoji. But did you know your phone is where you can schedule your next therapy session? Telehealth is a collection of means or methods for enhancing public health care, education, and support through technology. It’s growing in popularity and there are plenty of online therapy options for you to choose from.
Self-care and healing looks different for everyone! There’s no one size fits all method nor is it always an insta-worthy snapshot. People experience different degrees and types of mental illnesses and sometimes one or more of these helpful options need to be utilized in order to bring about a healthier you. No matter what option you choose, remember that you are worth all of the love, care, and support that you need to help you on your mental health journey!