Reflecting on discussions on last Saturday’s Mental Health Day, one question that someone posted on LinkedIn really stood out for me.
“Why isn’t there a ‘first aid kit bag’ like the one we have for physical injuries?”
Yes, there is the great and increasingly popular #MentalHealthFirstAid course but this focuses primarily on people who are actively mentally unwell – suffering from anxiety, depression, suicidal tendencies – and how to talk with them in the immediate moment before they access professional help. It’s like Red Cross’ First Aid training – handy at the scene of an accident ahead of the Paramedic team arriving to take over.
Yet, most physical accidents don’t require a professional medic. My kids go through a bewildering array of plasters, lotions and potions for their minor physical ailments. But what about minor mental health ‘ailments’? Many of us might have times when we feel decidedly more Eeyore than Tigger the Tiger. But is there a mental health first aid kit bag – one with metaphorical plasters, cleaning wipes and paracetamol – like the physical one you might keep at home?
There certainly are the equivalent things in the world of mental wellbeing. So to rise to the LinkedIn challenge posed, here’s a metaphorical First Aid kit bag for your mental health.
NB this kit bag is designed for people with generally sound levels of mental health but who occasionally lapse into dips in their sense of mental wellbeing. It is designed to be informative but is light hearted in style. If you feel you are experiencing more serious mental wellbeing problems such as depression, anxiety etc, please contact a professional via one of the organisations listed here.