Date: 31 January 2019
This year's Time to Talk Day is all about bringing together the right ingredients to have a conversation about mental health. NIHR CRN Greater Manchester and the Division of Psychology and Mental Health at the University of Manchester (UoM) will host an event to mark the day on 7 February. Here, Isabelle Butcher, a researcher within the division at UoM, shares her thoughts on the campaign.
How are you? How have you been? Many of us often ask one another these questions daily, either via face to face or via text messages.
As a society we are faced with slogans such as ”Keep Calm and Carry On” and we feel compelled to do just that. However sometimes we need to stop, pause and talk to someone about how we are really feeling and what is going on in our lives. Failure to do so can leave us feeling anxious, isolated and alone.
Isabelle Butcher, a lead researcher at the University of Manchester's Division of Psychology and Mental Health
Often by sharing how we are truly feeling with one or two close friends, family members or work colleagues, it can help us feel less alone. Two-out-of-three people suffer in silence, fearing judgement and rejection. Are we prepared for an individual’s response to the question to be more than ‘I’m fine?’
Being open to a conversation is the first step towards eliminating the stigma.
As individuals, are we prepared to actively listen to those who share with us openly and honestly their true feelings?
Research shows that social support has a key role in establishing good mental health. There is current research ongoing within the Division of Psychology Mental Health at University of Manchester highlighting the importance of acknowledging the role that our relationships with others can contribute positively to our mental health.
So, not just today but every day, take a moment to pause and tell someone how you are feeling; and will you listen?
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