How are you? Really - we’d like to know. How are things going for you?
Researcher can be mentally challenging in the best of times, and it would be very easy to make an argument that right now, it is not the best of times. Pandemic, wars, climate change, political upheaval. It’s a lot.
So, let’s park all of that for the moment. Here in the UK it’s Mental Health Awareness Week, and we wanted to open a conversation about what helps you to stay well - and what support you may need as well.
- How are you feeling? (We’d really like to know
- What have been some of the challenges you’re facing?
- What methods, tactics, and/or resources have you been using to manage your mental health?
I’ll go first
- I’ve been finding the sheer amount of bad news punishingly overwhelming, and I still find it a challenge to actively switch off from news and social media feeds. I know there’s good news out there - it’s just harder to find that signal from all the noise.
- I’ve found being outside to be incredibly helpful to find balance and perspective. Daily “mental health” walks around my local neighbourhood have helped keep me sane.
Listening to music has also been a great help. It’s been of comfort to me to match my sonic landscape to either how I’m feeling now, or how I want to be feeling in an effort to move in that direction. Keen for recommendations on what you’re listening to as well!
Feel free to share how you’re feeling below if you’re comfortable to do so. Let’s treat this as a safe–albeit public–space, so please be kind and supportive of others experiences. If you’d like to speak more privately, feel free to PM me @jon and I’ll endeavour to help.
- Unleashed has put together a mental health hub packed with good suggestions to read, listen, follow, and do.
- If you’re keen to support others in their mental health challenges, becoming a Mental Health First Aider is a great way to be of support. Local chapters of MHFA (e.g. England, USA, Australia) provide excellent training and support that will equip you to support others.
- Mind and the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) are excellent mental health charities
- Samaritans run a free hotline 24/7 at 116 123 if you ever need them.
- The NHS has a great resource hub which will direct you towards more local help.
- VeryWellMind has a comprehensive list of organisations/initiatives in the US
- Inclusive Therapists helps you find someone to talk to
This is by no means an exhaustive list, and certainly limited in its global scope. I’d love to know what resources you find useful - please share in the comments below.