Today is Time to Talk Day which is an annual campaign run by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, that aims to break the silence surrounding mental health, and create a space for open and honest conversations. The day focuses on creating supportive communities by having conversations with family, friends, or colleagues about mental health. We all have mental health and by talking about it we can support ourselves and others.
Why is Time to Talk Day important?
Mental health is a crucial aspect of our overall wellbeing, and open conversations play a vital role in reducing stigma and fostering a supportive environment. NHS England found one in four of us will experience a mental health problem in any given year, so it is more important than ever to discuss how we are feeling and to reach out for help if we need it. By participating in Time to Talk Day, we contribute to a larger movement promoting mental health awareness.
Our health and safety advisor, and mental health first aider Robert Brayford, tells us about the stress bucket model, and why talking about how we feel is vital to our wellbeing.
“Talking about mental health is so important. We’re in a much better place now as a society but historically there has been a stigma attached to poor mental health and indeed talking about it. Initiatives like Time to Talk Day have really made a difference to how mental health is perceived and thankfully is normalising these conversations.
“From personal experience, I used to be a bit of a closed book and would never share personal feelings and thoughts with anyone, until one day I reached my limit.
“As a mental health first aider we’re taught about the stress bucket model. The model is essentially a bucket with rain pouring in, with the rain representing life. The rain could be due to work, stress, relationships, financial problems or unresolved trauma. The rain/life fills the stress bucket and there’s only so much the bucket can take before it overflows.
“As I was learning about the stress bucket, I recognised myself from a few years ago before I opened up and started talking. Talking is one of the healthiest ways to empty the bucket.
“Talking helps whether it’s to a counsellor, a friend, family member or a colleague. Once you open up, you’ll be amazed at how many people have similar experiences.
“If you suspect someone is struggling, it may feel hard to broach the subject and may be a bit awkward at first, but once the initial ‘are you okay?’ is asked, the conversation will likely just flow.
“Remember to keep your questions open when approaching a mental health conversation, and let the person lead.”
We hope you find time today to have an open and honest conversation with a friend or loved one.
If you would like to find out more about Time to Talk Day and how you can get involved, please visit their website.
For further resources on mental health, see below: