We all have mental health, just as we all have physical health. Mental health may be viewed as a continuum, and is not synonymous with mental ill health – which can strike at any time and affects people from all walks of life. In fact, statistics reflect that approximately 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year, and, in England, 1 in 6 people report experiencing a common mental health problem (such as anxiety and depression) in any given week.
I invite you to join me in laying the positive foundations towards mental wealth…
I have dedicated the best part of 25 years to senior management roles within retail and hospitality – embodying a definite work-life imbalance. Through my journey, I have personally experienced how stress, anxiety and depression are interwoven with our health – both physical and mental. This point was irrevocably forced home just over four years ago, when my father – a respected medical practitioner in South Africa – took his own life.
We see the facts and figures, but every statistic is a father, a daughter – a member of someone’s family.
Prevention is better than cure. And early intervention is the best means of prevention.
Stigma still exists around mental ill health. As a society, we generally don’t know how to take care of our mental health like we do our physical health. You may not know how to support a friend, family member, or a colleague experiencing a mental health issue – or where to go for support with your own mental health.
Become a Mental Health First Aider
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is an accredited training course which teaches people how to identify, understand and help someone who may be experiencing a mental health issue. MHFA won’t teach you to be a therapist, but it will teach you to listen, to reassure and to respond, even in a crisis – and even potentially stop a crisis from happening.
You will learn to recognise the warning signs of mental ill health, and you will develop the skills and confidence to approach and to support someone, whilst keeping yourself safe. You’ll also learn how to empower someone to access the support they might need for their recovery, or for the successful management of their symptoms.
You will gain an understanding of how to support positive wellbeing, and how to tackle the stigma in the world around you.
The MHFA England Instructor Training programme is accredited by the Royal Society for Public Health, and – as an accredited instructor – I support the mission of Mental Health First Aid England:
“Mental health education empowers people to care for themselves and others. By reducing stigma through understanding, we hope to break down barriers to the support that people may need to stay well, recover, or manage their symptoms – to thrive in learning, work and life.”
MHFA training courses have evolved into a global movement with licensed programmes now firmly established in 25 countries, with over 3 million people having been trained in MHFA skills worldwide. MHFA was introduced to England in 2007, and was launched under the Department of Health: National Institute of Mental Health in England (NIMHE) as part of a national approach to improving public mental health.
If you are interested in attending one of our upcoming MHFA England accredited training courses in – and around – London, contact Colin – an accredited MHFA Instructor, and certified Youth And Adult Mental Health First Aider, trained also in ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) – for additional information, or click HERE to register your interest.
Our next MHFA 2 day accredited certification course is to be held on Wednesday, February 20th, and Thursday February 21st, at Allum Hall and Manor – less than 25 minutes from St. Pancras International, London. There is also ample provision for parking if you would prefer to drive…
Where’s Your Head At?
“Where’s Your Head At?” is a campaign which will improve the mental health of the nation by ensuring employers look after the wellbeing of their workforce. The intention is to make it easy for you to talk about your mental health at work, and to ensure that there are trained colleagues on site who know how to point you in the direction of any help that you might need. Evidence shows that the earlier a mental health issue – like stress, anxiety or depression – is detected, the easier it is to manage and treat.
An open letter was sent to Theresa May on November, 18th, 2018, calling for changes in legislation to elevate mental health to a level of parity with physical health in the workplace .
Success will ensure that employees across the country can access a trained member of staff, to receive initial support and guidance if they are dealing with a mental health issue at work. Success will ensure that every employee has the right to a mentally healthy environment. Success will mean we can finally break the stigma of mental health in the workplace.
The motion was debated in parliament on January, 17th, 2019, and was welcomed by the majority. It is now surely only a matter of time before it is passed into legislation.
Furthermore, The Health and Safety Executive has amended their recommendation to read that “Work-related mental health issues must be assessed to measure the levels of risk to staff. Where a risk is identified, steps must be taken to remove it or reduce it as far as reasonably practicable.”
“You should consider ways to manage mental ill health in your workplace which are appropriate for your business, such as providing information or training for managers and employees, employing occupational health professionals, appointing mental health trained first aiders and implementing employee support programmes.
First aid training courses covering mental health, teach delegates how to recognise warning signs of mental ill health and help them to develop the skills and confidence to approach and support someone, while keeping themselves safe.”T
There is no Health Without Mental Health.