Today is the highest profile day of the year for mental health – it’s Bell Let’s Talk. People from coast to coast to coast will be texting, tweeting, snapping, Instagraming, and Facebooking to support mental health initiatives across Canada.
But today, while we’re all out there talking, let’s remember the most important way to help someone who may be struggling with their mental health – listen.
We all know the stats – 1 in 5 people will have a mental illness in their lifetime, 2 in 3 people who need support will not be able to access the help they need, and the list goes on. These stats aren’t just numbers, they’re people. They are your Aunt Suzy, your brother Anthony, your colleague Greg, your neighbour Theresa, or yourself. Listening to a friend, family member or colleague talk about their own mental health could be the thing that starts a path to recovery.
While you’re social media-ing throughout the day, please take a moment to think about what mental health is about, and what a mental illness actually is. We all have mental health, and just like your physical health, you can have good mental health even with a mental illness.
So today, and every day throughout the year, remember the other half of what it means to talk about mental health, listening.
Associate Director, Capitalize for KidsJustin came to Capitalize for Kids from Accenture where he was a Management Consultant in the Financial Services practice. In 2013, he founded the Jack Summit, Canada’s student-led mental health innovation summit. Justin graduated from Queen’s University with a major in Life Sciences and minor in Economics.