We all have mental health, like we all have physical health. Sometimes it's good, sometimes we struggle. Mental ill health can strike at any time and can affect people from all walks of life, I have lived through periods of extreme mental ill health and know the need for support from family, friends and colleagues. I have wanted to become a Mental Health First Aider for many years but couldn't figure out how I would cope with the need to be physically present for the training. In Lockdown however all the training moved online and I took the opportunity to get trained.
This is what MHFA say about the purpose of their training.
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is a 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, reassure and respond, even in a crisis – and even potentially stop a crisis from happening. You’ll learn to recognise warning signs of mental ill health, and develop the skills and confidence to approach and support someone while keeping yourself safe. You’ll also learn how to empower someone to access the support they might need for recovery or successful management of symptoms. This could include self-help books or websites, accessing therapy services through their GP, their school or place of work, online self-referral, support groups, and more. What’s more, you’ll gain an understanding of how to support positive wellbeing and tackle stigma in the world around you.
I am sharing this so that hopefully you know that you can come to me if you have questions about mental health, but also to encourage you to think about mental health and perhaps think about getting some training as an MHFA or attend a mental health awareness course.