World Mental Health Day 2011

City Connect proudly supports World Mental Health Day on 10 October 2011 which raises public awareness about mental health issues. The day promotes open discussion of mental disorders, and investments in prevention, promotion and treatment services. The World Health Organisation created World Mental Health Day in 1992 – it has been a yearly event since then and is celebrated globally.

It’s thought that one in four people are likely to experience a mental health problem every year so it’s likely that you or someone you know will be affected by mental health problems during your lifetime. Therefore it is critical to raise awareness and promote good mental health for the benefit of all members of society.

Charitable organisations such as MIND and RETHINK campaign vigorously to educate people about mental health issues and work to create a society where those who suffer from mental health problems are treated fairly, positively and with respect. In addition, the groundbreaking Time to Change coalition campaigns to reduce the stigma and discrimination faced by people with experience of mental distress.

To find out more about these charities and how to support them, please check out their websites. Below is the Time to Change interactive YouTube advert that looks at what’s the worst thing that could happen when you talk about mental health.

The Five Steps to Well-being give guidelines on ways to improve your mental health. Each step relates to very practical things that everyone can do to improve their mood and feel significant and connected to the people in their lives and world they live in. Listed below are the five steps with suggestions on how to put each one into practice.


1. Connect
Make connections with the people around you; with family, friends, colleagues and neighbours.  These are the cornerstones of your life so invest time in them. Building these connections will support and enrich you every day.

2. Be active
Go for a walk or run, step outside, cycle, play a game, do gardening, dance or just get moving. Exercising makes you feel good. Most importantly, discover a physical activity you enjoy and that suits your level of mobility and fitness.

3. Take notice
Be curious. Catch sight of beautiful things. Remark on the unusual. Notice the changing seasons. Savour the moment. Reflecting on your experiences will help you appreciate what matters to you.

4. Keep learning
Try something new. Rediscover an old interest. Sign up for that new course. Take on a different responsibility at work. Fix a bike. Learn to play an instrument or how to cook your favourite food. Set a challenge you will enjoy achieving. Learning new things will make you more confident as well being fun.

5. Give
Do something nice for a friend or a stranger. Thank someone. Smile. Volunteer your time. Join a community group. Look out as well as in. Seeing yourself, and your happiness, as linked to the wider community can be incredibly rewarding and creates connections with the people around you.

I hope these examples give you some practical suggestions to try out. Enjoy finding out which ones work best for you in your journey to improving your well-being.

Do you have any examples to share about the things you do to improve your well-being? Please leave your comments below.

Video reproduced from YouTube / ttcnow2008
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About Alan Philippe

Describing himself as an extraordinary guy doing ordinary things, Alan Philippe is the epitome of a people's person and it's no suprise that this perfect host is a typical ESFJ. Before starting his publishing career, Alan graduated with Joint Honours from University College London having read Physiology & Pharmacology. He worked for many years in Learning & Development, although his experience spans much more than this. Indeed, he was even once a recruitment consultant although Alan says he left the Dark Side relatively unscathed! Alan Philippe has a passion for fashion, interior design and all things vintage. When he's not busy in his role as Creative Editor of City Connect, you'll find him in either socialising in his favourite hotspots, getting a culture fix in the world of Art & Theatre, following the latest fashion and design trends or simply enjoying the best that life has to offer at home and abroad. Follow him on Twitter @A1Philippe
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