Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Time to Talk Day: Get involved

Time to Talk Day

Time to Change is a programme created by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, designed to challenge mental health stigma and discrimination. On 5th February they are hosting a day called 'Time to Talk Day', where they are asking people to chat to someone for at least 5 minutes about mental health during that day, and then log on their website how long they talked for. Time to Change's aim is to have a 24 hour conversation about mental health, to get people thinking and show that it is okay to talk about it.

You can choose to have your conversation with friends and family, at work, in the community, at school or university, or even online. I decided that I would talk to my friends and family about it (as well as online with my blog!), so I ordered their free pack for this purpose. I received it the other day (you can see it here): it includes leaflets, postcards, posters, fortune teller conversation starters, and 10 badges. I am planning to use the fortune teller conversation starter to decide what to start a conversation about, and will be handing out the leaflets and postcards to people at university during the day. I will also be proudly wearing my badge, which states "I've had my conversation. Have you?", and will be asking my friends to do the same (sorry guys!). You can also get free packs for work, the community, and school or university, but you can also have your conversation without receiving one of these. Just ask someone how they are feeling, or get your views across about mental health. We can all help to stop mental health discrimination - and on the 5th February all you need to do is chat for 5 minutes.

As well as talking on 5th February, you can help share the message with social media. Sign up to Time to Talk's Thunderclap here, and on the morning of Time to Talk Day a message will be posted to your social media account showing that you are supporting the movement.

You can also help Time to Change by adding your pledge to their pledge wall, to help end mental health stigma. Over 75,000 people have already signed up which is amazing - every person is helping and it shows how important the issue really is. Mental health will affect everyone at some point in their lives, whether it is them directly or someone they know, so it's incredibly important to stop it being a taboo. We should be able to talk about it freely without being judged as it's a completely normal part of life to suffer from a mental health illness, and talking about it is one of the things that really helps overcome it.

I am so passionate about this subject, and am proud that I will be a part of Time to Talk Day, helping to end mental health stigma. You can see my post with my views on it here.

Today has been a normal day spent on placement in hospital, and then doing a bit of work and relaxing when I got home. I've recently got into Pretty Little Liars, which is really bad as there are over 100 episodes and I often find myself binge-watching, distracting myself from work. Oops. I also had a hilarious discovery when I found that one of my top referring sites for my blog this week has been from "Rainwear Central" - you can tell that I'm really moving on up in the world.
Life is a never ending journey of discovery.
                - Gillian Roberts



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