29 Oct A doorway to meaningful mental health discussion – my most important pin yet
A meme most can relate to, whilst we smile at the cute doggo here smiling and ironically stating ‘This is fine’ while the room burns, we need to remember how important it is to stop and listen to others and have an actual conversation. Don’t know your meme’s, read up here.
How often do we ask someone “how are you?” out of politeness, only to get a generic “good thanks, you?” in return? Yet deep down, the individual might be struggling and could really do with an honest and deep conversation.
Founded 10 years ago, Australian non-profit suicide prevention organisation ‘R U OK?‘ recently had their annual R U OK? Day and it was terrific to see so many Australian businesses, schools, sporting institutions and media outlets promote the campaign so strongly. I encourage everyone that isn’t familiar with the organisation to read up on their website.
Thursday October 10th was also World Mental Health Day (10th of the 10th), raising awareness that 1 in 5 Australian’s are affected by mental illness, yet don’t speak out due to the associated stigma. Each year, more and more awareness is made towards how normal it can be to feel flat and down, and the importance of seeking help when you feel as such.
The trouble is that when you are feeling flat, reaching out for help is not at the front of your mind, and therefore a meaningful conversation initiated by someone else could help change your life. If you ever suspect someone isn’t doing well then a conversation may be the best thing for them. I wear this pin to provide the small-talk platform to open the door for such meaningful discussion.
Every interaction may benefit from such discussion, these are some examples just from my own industry:
Mental health awareness for migrants:
It’s stressful enough moving to a foreign country, learning a new language, paying bills and working towards your Australian-dream all whilst maintaining a fake smile within the friendly and overt Aussie culture. Common concerns I hear from migrants include:
“I had heard finding work in Australia was hard, but I struggled for more than a year to find the work that was right for me”.