Time to Talk day will be taking place on the 1st February as part of a national drive to get more people talking openly about mental health which has sparked millions of conversations. This was an initiative created in 2014 by the organisation 'Time to Change' in an effort to change the way we all think and act about mental health problems.
'1 in 4' people will experience a mental health problem in any given year, however stigma has resulted in a 'fear' to talk about this. A survey carried out by Time to Change in 2013 found that young people had experienced stigma from: 65% of friends, 50% of parents, 45% partners and 43% teachers, and the one that always resonates with me is 28% said that negative reactions from others had made them want to give up on life. This desperately needs to change.
It may seem daunting to start a conversation about mental health, and it can result in some incredibly difficult emotions, but it can most importantly change lives. This does not have to be some movie style big gesture, it can be as simple as sending a loved one a text, asking how they are doing, making sure to include them, letting them know you are there if they ever wanted to talk.
Mental health is something every single one of us have and it is an incredibly important that we feel able to talk about this in the same way we do with physical health. Too many people with mental health problems are made to feel isolated, worthless and ashamed. Time to Talk Day is a chance for all of us to be more open about mental health – to talk, to listen, to change lives.
Wherever you are – at home, at work or up the top of a mountain! – have your conversation about mental health this Time to Talk Day.