the best mental health resources

I have found so many amazing mental health resources. I hope they will help someone else as much as they’ve helped me. But before we dive into those, let’s review…

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The American Psychiatric Association defines mental health & mental illness below.

Examples of mental health conditions include anxiety disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and more included here.

Various things can influence the well-being of our mental health, including life experiences, family history, and biology. Mental health, or emotional health, is as important, if not more important, than physical health. The issue is that most people don’t want to speak about their true feelings and mental well-being because they’re worried they’ll be seen as “weak” or “crazy.”

Personally, I’m learning how to effectively manage my depression and anxiety in daily life. I don’t want to feel ashamed for having a mental health condition (this is the new and preferred verbiage according to professionals). No one should feel ashamed by the way their brain is programmed. I want people to be able to speak comfortably about mental health…just as we speak about physical health in everyday conversation.

we need to start viewing mental health differently. 🙌

what can you do? / movements 

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Watch this “I’m Fine” video – from the UK Mental Health Foundation that portrays how sometimes we may feel bad, not wanting to burden others with our feelings. Let’s try to be more honest with each other about how we’re really feeling.

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Join the movement of speaking about mental health & mental health conditions in normal, everyday conversation. Let’s erase the stigma that speaking about mental health is a sign of weakness.

Share your experiences…because you don’t know who you’ll be helping in the process.

#EndTheStigma 

Inspired by Carrie Fisher’s death, Kat Selwyn Layton unintentionally started a mental health movement. #EndTheStigma badges encourage people to share their daily struggles with mental health conditions. Since its launch, #EndTheStigma has extended to also include the neurodivergent community.

#StigmaFree

WearYourLabel.com joined NAMI as a #StigmaFree company and helps promote NAMI’S #StigmaFree pledge.

helpful resources

Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255 or Live Online Chat

Mental Health America – have you heard of the mental health bell? Back in 1953, Mental Health America took all of the iron chains and restraints that were once used in mental asylums and created a 300-lb “mental health bell,” creating a sign of hope for mental health conditions. Over the years community leaders ring the bell to mark progress of the mental health movement.

Mental Health America focuses on the “Before Stage 4” idea, focusing on early identification and intervention, along with support services.

Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) to reach a 24-hour crisis center, or text MHA to 741741 at the Crisis Text Line. 

NAMI – National Alliance on Mental Illness is a grassroots organization, providing educational resources and support to those with mental health conditions. They are very active in advocating for mental health national policy and have local NAMI chapters you can become a part of.

CALL THE NAMI HELPLINE 800-950-NAMI info@nami.org M-F, 10 AM – 6 PM ET

Find Help in a crisis or Text “NAMI” to 741741

TWLOHA – To Write Love on Her Arms started with founder Jamie Tworkowski trying to help a friend, Renee, with her depression, addiction, and self-injury struggles. Soon Jamie started TWLOHA to inform and educate the community about mental health conditions. TWLOHA is very community-oriented, commonly attending events and festivals, spreading awareness about mental health. They also hold a yearly event called  HEAVY AND LIGHT filled with storytelling and music.

Find help by state here

The Mighty – A blog resource of inspiring posts from over 5,000 different contributors. Screenshot 2017-02-08 19.34.52.png

They focus on the realness of disability, disease and mental health. I’ve come across some amazing stories and thought, oh, someone else feels that way? You can sort by conditions as well.

Medium.com/tag/mental-health  – a compilation of mental health-related personal essays, poems, and research from people all over the world.

influencers 

Michelle Bellamore – Michelle was an active participant in NAMI Tennessee’s 2017 Faces of Mental Health Storytelling campaign for The Big Payback. The campaign highlighted self-care advocates in the local community through a 24-hour online fundraising campaign.

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michelle bellamore participating in the NAMI Tennessee campaign

By day she’s the Business Development Account Executive at US Imprints, but she lives her true purpose by sharing her personal self-care story and lending her voice to the suicide prevention cause.

With her positive outlook on life and sunny disposition, Michelle continues to provide a voice for those who may be struggling.

Grace Mendez – As a college student in Nashville, Grace is wise beyond her years.

Grace participated in the NAMI Tennessee Faces of Mental Health Storytelling campaign in 2017 by providing the community with insightful advice as to how we should be viewing mental health today. She states, “Mental health should be treated like physical health.” 🙌

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grace mendez participating in the NAMI Tennessee campaign.

Her candidness regarding self-care along with her desire to help others be more open about mental health makes Grace an inspiration to all of us.

Derek Couts – As the founder of Chase the Life You LoveDerek believes that everyone should be actively pursuing a life of happiness because we only have one chance to do so. Derek states that we all should be doing whatever is necessary to Chase the Life You Love: “Whether that is seeking counseling, quitting a job you hate even though the pay is great, getting rid of debt, or even finding self-acceptance in who and what you are, but most importantly, by serving others.”

Derek has a unique but important approach to self-care: become debt-free (get rid of the financial ties), focus on finding your passion and put your family first.

Carrie Fisher – Famous for her role as Princesse Leia, but also very well-known for speaking openly about addiction and bipolar disorder.

Wayne Brady – Openly speaks about his depression, and explains how he was scared of jeopardizing his career and personal life.

Demi Lovato has partnered with bevocalspeakup.com. Demi has bipolar disorder and actively promotes the importance of getting help when you need it. She’s open about the struggles she has with her condition, and how it takes patience to find something that works for you.

Gerald McRath – Former Tennessee Titan Gerald McRath has shared his personal mental health story at conventions across the U.S.; he truly is an inspiring speaker and storyteller. He participated in NAMI Tennessee’s Face of Mental Health Storytelling campaign in 2017.

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gerald mcrath participating in the NAMI Tennessee campaign.

Lady Gaga – “I openly admit to having battled depression and anxiety and I think a lot of people do. I think it’s better when we all say: ‘Cheers!’ And ‘fess up to it.” –rte.ie interview; check out Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation

Kid Cudi (Scott Mescudi) – Early in 2016, he opened up about his issues with alcohol and depression to Billboard Magazine. Then on October 4, 2016 Kid Cudi announced on social media to his fans that he was checking himself into a facility due to depression and suicidal urges. #YouGoodMan on Twitter also surfaced.

Kate Nash expressed her thoughts on the importance of mental health in a recent PAPER interview “I just don’t think there’s a lot of support and care for artists and their mental health. Most artists have mental health issues. This tour I’m doing in the UK — we’re doing it with MIND (a mental health charity in the UK).”

Kristen Bell explained her own personal struggles with anxiety and depression on OffCamera with Sam Jones. Kristen is thankful her mother addressed mental health at such a young age, and has been actively taking prescription medication for her mental health condition. She states that no one should be ashamed of a mental health condition by asking for help to cope with medication. 👍

art & illustrations

In October 2016, Shawn Cross released these incredible illustrations.  They speak for themselves. See more illustrations on Shawn’s Facebook page here

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Illustrator Toby Allen took to the drawing board to depict some of his own mental health struggles as actual monsters. He writes“The project aims to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness…”

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see more of Toby Allen’s illustrations here

 Have any resources or influencers you’d like to share? What has helped you with your mental health condition?

Let me know in the comments below. 

✌️

P.S. A huge thank you to Michelle Bellamore, Grace Mendez and Derek Couts for taking the time to provide insights + their favorite mental health resources!

Please note: I am not a medical professional and not trained to treat any medical illnesses. The purpose of my blog is purely informational. 

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