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Little (and BIG) things you can do for Mental Health Awareness Month 2024

May is Mental Health Awareness month! As we know, it is always a great time to spread awareness of the importance of mental health but lucky us! We get an entire month dedicated to it! I know the idea of talking about mental health can be daunting so I'm going to list some little (and a few BIG things) you can do this month.


Talk about your mental health with someone you love


People care deeply about you. They want to know what you're going through. I know it seems scary but sharing about your mental health with someone you love is the best first step.


Check-in on loved ones and ask questions


Just like there are people who care deeply about you, there are people you care deeply about! Check-in on them! Send a text, call, FaceTime, knock on their front door, and ask them questions.


It's easy to fall into the "How are you?" "I'm good. How are you?" trap that doesn't tell us anything about how someone is really feeling. Instead let's focus on asking specific questions like:

  • "How has your stress level been lately?"

  • "Have you been sleeping okay?"

  • "Has anything been bothering you recently?"


Check-in on those in a similar community


Have you found your community? If not, go find it! It's out there waiting for you with open arms, ready to love and support you. If you have found your community, reach out to the members! This can be online through social media and/or email, you can text, call, FaceTime, or it can be in person.


Just like what was mentioned above, ask specific questions. If you're in the body-focused repetitive behavior (BFRB) community like me, this could look like:

  • How has your pulling/picking been?

  • What are some successes you've had recently?

  • I remember you were trying a new management strategy, how did that go?"


Like and share mental health posts that relate to you


Social media is amazing because there are so many people spreading awareness of mental health and mental illness. Search the hashtag that relates to you. Find accounts that will make you feel less alone and inspire you. Like and share their posts! Let the algorithm lead you to your online community.


Sharing a post about mental health awareness is a great way to introduce the idea of sharing with the people around you. You'll be surprised with how many people reach out to you and say things like, "I have this too!"


Try new forms of self-care


When you think of self-care what do you think of? Sometimes we can find ourselves overwhelmed with the idea of making time for self-care but it can be simple things added to your day that will ultimately make a huge difference! And finding new forms of self-care can be so fun!


Look at this self-care checklist I found on Chelseadishes.com


Listen to podcasts that focus on mental health and awareness


Podcasts are a great way to learn new things. They also make you feel comforted because you are able to listen to someone else who has had similar experiences. Of course, I am going to shamelessly plug my podcast, Trich Talks, where I interview others in the BFRB community, but I also want to plug a few more that I love!


Read books that focus on mental health and awareness


I was overjoyed to learn that there were people in the BFRB community who shared their experience in the form of a book. I've always loved to read and I couldn't wait to read them all! Also, reading is a great form of self-care, just saying! Here are a few books written by people with BFRBs that I recommend:


Attend a support group


Meeting others just like you is incredibly healing. Talk about a safe space! Here are some support groups that I recommend:


Reach out to a mental health professional or coach


No matter where you are on your healing journey, it’s never a bad idea to reach out to professionals. Whether it’s traditional therapy, peer coaching or both, see what makes the most sense for you!


HabitAware offers virtual peer coaching with me, Ellen, and Aneela! We've been through our own BFRB recovery and can't wait to share our wisdom with you! You can learn more here!


Share your experience on the internet


This one might be the scariest and biggest thing to do in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month but I promise you it is life changing in the best way possible. You are not alone. You never were! And there are people out there who need to hear your story (when you're ready). You'll never know just how many lives you are changing because of your vulnerability until you take the leap!


Sharing your experience also helps get rid of some of the shame you may have been experiencing. Shame tells us that we should hide our experiences because we could be perceived as "weird" or "bad" but believe me when I say, other people do what you do! Even down to the most intricate details! Press "post" and watch as others comment and message you saying, "Me too!"


Want more ideas? Check out these websites!

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