MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS WEEK 2023
15-21 MAY 2023
If you've ever experienced Anxiety before, you'll know it can be incredibly intense and scary. For some, people live with an anxiety disorder which can deeply impact their quality of life.
Anxiety disorders affect over 8 million people in the UK[1.] in varying degrees. It's never "just". "Just" is harmful, dismissive and invalidating.
The wonderful team at MentalHealth-UK.org have created some wonderful resources this year to share truths about the condition, and how we can help those suffering.
What NOT to say and what to say instead:
|What Not To Say||What To Say Instead|
|"What do you have to be anxious about?"||" How can I help you to feel less anxious?"|
|"Just calm down!"||"I can see you're anxious, what can I do to help?"|
|"Worrying won't solve anything."||"Let's focus on what you can control."|
|"Other people have it worse."||"Your feelings are valid. What can I do to support you?"|
Make the person feel heard and safe.
What to do if you are feeling anxious?
Try these 10 minute techniques:
- Adrenaline Burn-Off: Undertake something physically active for 10 minutes to burn off excessive adrenaline your body is making. Go for a fast walk.
- 5,4,3,2,1 Grounding: Name 5 things you can see, 4 things you can feel, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell, 1 thing you can taste. It doesn't have to be in that order, but it's your five senses.
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation: In a quiet place, take a slow deep breath in, tensing an isolated muscle and then slowly breathing out to relax it. Start at your feet and work up through the body to your eyes.
We need to calm our nervous system as we enter 'fight-or-flight mode'. A deep breath repeated can be a good start to use tools to cope with feelings of unease and anxiousness.
You can visit: https://mentalhealth-uk.org/mental-health-awareness-week/#resources to learn more about mental health whether it's for yourself or to help others. Remember to look out for each other, you never know what another person is going through.