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Time To Talk 2022

Posted by Andrew Chapman on February 2, 2022

The TIME TO TALK logo

It's hard enough going through any mental health problems without facing judgement, shame and isolation that often surrounds these issues. That's why Time To Talk is looking to reduce stigma and end mental health discrimination. 

February the 3rd is Time to Talk day! An awareness day run by registered charity Mind and national institute Rethink Mental Illness. Time to Talk Day is the UK's biggest mental health conversation. 

Conversations have the power to change lives, helping to create a supportive community where we can talk openly about mental health and feel empowered to seek help when we need it. However you start your conversation, join in with the hashtag, #timetotalk.

What Is Time To Talk?

Time to Talk day is run by Mind, Rethink Mental Illness and this year, it's also in partnership with Co-op. The campaign runs UK wide. Scotland is in partnership with SAMH (Scottish Association for Mental Health) and See Me. Mental Health Services Change Your Mind are the Northern Ireland partners, and Time To Change are partners in Wales.

Time To Talk day is all about creating support within your community by having conversations with family, friends, or even your colleagues in the workplace about mental health. We all have mental health, and by talking about it, we can support ourselves and others and help each other to enjoy life and find support.

Everything from the normal stresses of daily life, to anxiety, depression and serious mental health disorders, need discussing, and Time To Talk aims to do this.

An image of two people sat in front of a sunset

Image by Harli Marten from Unsplash

This year, Time To Talk is aiming to support communities across the UK to have more mental health conversations than ever before, and it's no secret that open conversations about mental well being in communities are incredibly important.

Co-op are raising £8m for Mind, SAMH and Inspire, helping to bring people together to improve mental and emotional well being. Along with delivering Time To Talk as a concept, these funds are providing support for mental health services in over 50 local communities.

Launched in 2014 by Time To Change, a campaign to end mental health stigma and discrimination and, in recent years, this has grown to the biggest mental health day in Britain.

Why Open Discussions On Mental Health Are Important

One in four of us will experience mental health problems in any given year. This can affect our relationships with family, friends, even our children. It can impact the ability to work productively, or simple daily life activities.

Everyone should feel comfortable talking about their mental health, whenever they like. Talking about mental health will help to reduce the stigma, helping to create supportive environments where we can talk openly about mental health and feel empowered to seek help when we need it.

Coping by ourselves is not always easy, and self help is not always the best of treatments. Anxiety, depression and stress can occur at any time, and while these events might not always lead to severe situations, or provoke a response like self harm, or suicide, recognising the early signs and leading causes of these problems are key. One of the easiest ways to do this is to talk about it.

Mental Health Discussion Tips

If you haven't guessed already, Time to Talk day is about everyone being open to the idea of talking about mental health. We all have mental health, and by having these discussions about it, we can help ourselves, our family, children and other adults. It's not about encouraging people to talk about a mental health disorder if they don't want to. By running an event in your community, sharing articles, or videos, hosting a "lunch and learn" session at work, or even just as simple as asking how someone's doing is a simple way to start the conversation about mental health and show people in your life that you're prepared to talk, or listen, without judgement.

Two men sitting and talking on a bench

Image by Anna Vander Stel from Unsplash

If someone does want to open up about their mental health issues, we know it might not always feel easy to know what to say, or what advice to give. But it doesn't have to be awkward, and providing support by being there for someone can make a big difference.

There is no right way to talk about mental health however, these tips can help make sure you're approaching it in a helpful way…

Ask Questions And Make Sure To Listen

Asking questions can give the person you're talking to, be it friends, family, children, or otherwise, space to express how they're feeling and the mental health, or physical health issues they're going through – it will also help you to understand their experiences better. Try to ask questions that are open, and not leading, or judgemental, like "how does that affect you?" or "what does it feel like?"

Think About The Time And Place

Sometimes, it's easier to talk side by side rather than face to face. So, if you do talk about anything from low mood to trauma, you might want to do it while you're doing something else. Start the conversation while you're walking, cooking, or stuck in traffic. However, don't let the search for the perfect place put you off.

Don't Try And Fix It

Unless you're a mental health professional, don't try to offer treatment of symptoms. It can be hard to see someone you care about, or someone in your family needing support, but try to resist the urge to offer quick fixes, or treatment to what they're going through. Learning to manage a mental disorder, or recover with mental health treatment, can be a long journey, and they've likely already considered lots of different avenues of mental health support, tools, strategies and research. Just talking can be really powerful, so unless they've asked for advice directly, just listen.

Support

If you're looking for support for anxiety, stress, or you're struggling to cope with mental health issues right now, below are some of the UK's best mental health charities and immediate support options.

Mind - provides advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.

NHS - if you need help for a mental health crisis, or emergency, you should get immediate expert advice and assessment.

Samaritans - offers suicide prevention and judgement free discussions. Samaritans are synonymous with helping the UK with any mental health issues.

Rethink Mental Illness - the Rethink Mental Illness advice and information service offers practical help on a wide range of topics, such as The Mental Health Act, community care, welfare benefits and carers' rights.

 

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