Today marks Time To Talk Day, and the concept is simple: talk about mental health. Anywhere, anyhow, with anyone. As easy as it sounds, for many people, talking about mental health, whether they suffer from a mental health issue or not, can be difficult, even more so to start the conversation. With that in mind, we thought it best to suggest a few ways that can get people talking for this Time To Talk Day.
1. Just sit down and talk.
The most basic of ways to talk about mental health. Whether it’s with a friend, parent or other family member, or even a loved one, get cosy in the warm, stick the kettle on for a cuppa and get the biscuits out. As intense as it sounds, this set-up doesn’t have to be. There are many casual ways that you can bring mental health into your chat, and you’ll be surprised where the conversation can go from there.
2. Chat with a distraction.
Break the ice (and the stigma) by talking whilst doing something else. Sometimes, having a conversation face to face with someone can be overwhelming and can put pressure on people who are unsure how to talk about mental health, or experience anxiety when they do. Whether it be whilst driving in the car, organising cupboards, or something equally mundane but focus-based, opening up about mental health with a distraction can help ease your worries.
3. Reach out to someone you know who lives with, or has lived with, mental health issues.
Talking about mental health doesn’t have to be because you’re the one struggling. If you know someone who, past or present, has experienced poor mental health, make today a great opportunity to reach out and check in. It doesn’t have to be as blunt as hey, how’s your depression?, but just asking how they’re doing and how they’re feeling is a great step in the right direction. Plus, they’ll appreciate that someone is looking out for them and is there to listen without judgement.
4. Head to social media.
Social media is the fastest way for us to access our peers and the rest of the world, so why not open up with a Tweet or a similar post on Facebook or Instagram? Your input will encourage others to reply, share your post, or even talk about their own experiences. If you’re unsure about going at it alone, why not search the #TimeToTalk hashtag and find threads that you feel comfortable joining in with.
5. Share your Ingredient Selfie!
This year, Time To Talk’s Ingredient Selfie is serving as the perfect opportunity to support Time To Talk Day on social media, and is a great alternative if you’re daunted by the idea of initiating a chat about mental health. All you have to do is think about what a good conversation around mental health would include for you. For some, they might think of being with their best friends, a takeaway, or even a walk in the park. For others, it may be less about the specifics, but more about the feelings that they want to have, for example, non-judgement or total support. Whatever it means to you, they’re your ingredients. Take them and, legibly, write them down. Take a photo and share them to social media, and be sure to see what ingredients other people include in their perfect Time To Talk recipe!