Why is World Mental Health Day so important?
When people ask me what I do for a living, I reply, a Psychotherapist. This more often than not gives people the opportunity to ask about counselling and briefly discuss their own problems. They discuss the problems they’re facing and how they would love to live a life free of anxiety or depression, however, when I begin to recommend counselling, the reply is often the same, “I think counselling is great, just not for me”. The despondent truth is that people will not think twice about going to the chiropractor for a sore back or to a dentist for their teeth, therefore improving their own health, but completely discount their need to look after their mental health.
People view mental illness as a sad thing that happens to other people, but maybe if we’re really honest with ourselves, it may be more personal than you think. According to the Mental Health Foundation (2014), 1 in 6 of us will experience a mental health problem this week. This brings me back to my original question, why is World Mental Health Day so important? It is important because it is time to educate and raise awareness of mental illness and its major effects on people's lives worldwide. It is a time to come together and remove the taboo of opening up around day to day struggles, removing that smiley mask that portrays everything as ‘okay’.
The rate of suicide in Northern Ireland is growing rapidly, to the point whether one way or another nearly all of us have been directly impacted by suicide or know someone who is. How many lives could have been saved if we could remove the stigmatism that mental health is a ‘weakness’. We need to stop comparing people's highlight reels to our behind the scenes and look at the fact that we are all human.
Let’s take the time to shed light on this growing necessity in our society. It's time to talk.
If you would like to talk about how counselling could help you, please visit www.jessicaleighcbt.com today to request a callback. We would love to hear from you.