The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year. This year’s theme set by the World Federation for Mental Health is ‘mental health for all’.
In some respect, awareness days such as these bring a subject into focus, encouraging discussion and acceptance. It is advertised on tv and social media every day at the moment, letting people know that it’s OK to talk about mental health, emotions and #wellbeing. It could lead to someone identifying they’re living with mental illness, seeking support and continuing to seek support, and beginning their journey to recovery. If that can be achieved with one day in a year – what about if that happened more than once a year? What if there was a world mental health day every month? What if it was an everyday topic, one we were comfortable discussing, addressing and supporting? Reminding people that 1 in 4 (globally) of us will be struggling with our mental health at any one time. Letting us know that it’s not something to ignore, it is something we can all help and #support. Maybe the prime minister or health secretary has a few words of encouragement in the adverts for making it a place where we can talk mental health? Would that make a difference?
With more frequency to this awareness, we would be encouraged to talk to about mental health, at the very least once a month – that kind of reminder would make a difference. When these annual days pass, their message is often forgotten.
What are your thoughts? What do you think would help?