It’s Time To Talk…”I’m listening”
On 2nd February, it’s Time To Talk Day 2023. This day is a time for friends, families, communities, and workplaces to come together to talk, listen and change lives.
Starting a conversation breaks down stigmas about mental wellbeing and can help those experiencing mental health concerns to access support. Wherever you’ll be and whatever you’ll be doing, why not use this day to kickstart a conversation about mental health?
As an employer
Mental health should be on your agenda throughout the year, so use Time To Talk Day as a marker to increase the visibility of your mental health and wellbeing provision:
- Organise a ‘lunch and learn’ session - invite an expert or someone with experience from your team to talk about how best to support and talk about mental health.
- Use the tips for talking on the Time To Talk website and create time for conversations among employees.
- Publicise Time To Talk Day via social media, email signatures and your company website.
- Share resources for mental health support with your employees, signposting services and organisations. You can find local services via the Community Search on our website.
- Make a commitment to further mental health support and training for your organisation with our Working Well programme.
Start a conversation with family or friends. Something as simple as “How are you?” and “I’m here to listen” can be exactly what someone needs if they’re struggling. Remember, you don’t need to have any answers, you just need to listen.
Use the opportunity to check in with your own needs too. Be honest with yourself: How are you feeling? Is there anything that’s bothering you? What do you need most at the moment?
If you or a loved one need support locally, find out how EWS can help.
Within your community
There are so many ways you can raise the profile of mental wellbeing within your community and start conversations about mental health:
- Ask a local community space if you can run a ‘tea and talk’ drop in session.
- Organise a ‘walk and talk’ event in a local green space.
- Use your existing community links to share information about local mental health support or to organise an event.
- If you’re in a sports club, creative group or other community organisation, hand out mental wellbeing information, conversation cards, or tips to members or supporters.
- Think outside of the box to organise a conversation starter you think will get your community talking!
- Consider becoming a volunteer with a local organisation - there are benefits to both the community and your own wellbeing when you volunteer!
With young people
The latest figures show a sharp increase in the numbers of young people needing mental health support, so it’s never been more important for children to be informed about how to access help:
- Start a conversation - it’s never too early to start a conversation about mental health. Use age-appropriate language that your child will understand and deliver the all-important message that there’s no problem that isn’t better shared.
- Paint rocks in bright colours and add a message that will act as a conversation starter, then hide the rocks around your local area for people to find. If you add the hashtag #timetotalk, the person who finds your stone might share their discovery on social media.
- Make posters or artwork that will help start a conversation about mental health - include the Time To Talk Day website address so people can get more information.
- If you’re a youth leader or teacher, take this opportunity to speak to the children in your care about mental health. You can use the resources on the Time To Talk website.
To find out how Essex Wellbeing Service can help you personally, take our assessment.