World Mental Health Day reminds us ‘It’s ok to not be ok’

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With the pandemic and other stressful initiators present this year, it is important to prioritize one’s mental health as well as those nearby on a daily basis. Photo by Spencer Selover from Pexels.

World Mental Health Day is observed annually on Oct. 10. The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness and mobilize efforts in support of mental health issues. 

This year, the day came at a time when many people’s lives have been upended by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the mental health of millions of people has endured negative effects. 

Healthcare workers have been on the frontlines battling COVID-19 for many months now and deal with the fear of contracting the virus daily. People who live alone are experiencing increased feelings of loneliness from being isolated by themselves. Students are taking classes from home and are unable to be in contact with many of their peers and teachers. People who have lost a loved one to COVID-19 are in the grieving process and may not be in contact with their support systems of family and friends. 

Whatever your situation is, it is likely that COVID-19 has had some effect on your mental health. This is why the goal of this year’s World Mental Health Day campaign is to increase investment in mental health. 

The National Council for Behavioral Health found that Americans are seeking mental health services now more than ever before, and the lack of access to services is now the main barrier preventing many people from receiving proper care. 

The Unite for Behavioral Health Campaign is leading the fight to improve the health and well-being of the entire country through initiatives that work to strengthen the behavioral healthcare professional field and integrate the treatment of mental and physical health. 

Historically, the stigma surrounding mental health has been the biggest barrier holding people back from feeling comfortable enough to talk about their struggles and reach out for help, but in recent years, this stigma has been broken down and more people are willing to talk about their mental health issues. 

Celebrities have been using their platforms, specifically social media outlets, to open up about their own struggles with mental health and help diminish the mental health stigma. 

“It’s ok to not be ok,” Mindy Kaling shared via Tweet over the weekend. “It’s a tough world out there and we need to be there for each other…You matter.” 

Camila Cabello, another celebrity, shared her own mental health struggles during this year’s World Mental Health Day and posted a video on Instagram that shared the tools she uses to deal with her anxiety and improve her overall mental health. 

“Healing is a lot of work, but don’t let anybody tell you it’s impossible, even if it feels like it right now”

“Healing is a lot of work, but don’t let anybody tell you it’s impossible, even if it feels like it right now – you will be stronger, wiser and a more compassionate human for it,” Cabello said. “Let’s destigmatize conversations around mental health, mental illness and trauma so we can help each other heal and also take preventative action.” 

Cabello has implemented daily practices of mindfulness, movement, gratefulness and adjusting her self-talk to learn how to be kind to herself and calm her anxious thoughts. These are just a few of the many ways you can address and work toward bettering your mental health on a daily basis. 

Although World Mental Health Day is only celebrated once a year, mental health is a crucial aspect of a person’s life and it is important to prioritize your own mental health and the mental health of those around you on a daily basis. Increasing funding for mental health services was the focus of this year’s celebration, and we must continue to work toward achieving this goal so that proper care can be provided to those in need.   

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