May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This event provides an opportunity to bring awareness to mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and other mental illness and promote positive mental health.
Mental Health Awareness
According to Mental Health America, nearly 1 in 5 American adults will have a diagnosable mental health condition in any given year.
When you’re mentally healthy, you can enjoy life and the people in it, feel good about yourself, maintain good relationships, and deal with stress in healthier ways. It’s normal for your mental health to change over time – especially when faced with difficult situations in life. However, creating positive habits is a great way to support your mental health when you’re doing well and helps you build skills to use if you do face symptoms of a mental health condition.
Studies have shown that stress’s physical and psychological symptoms can decrease in minutes from activities, such as breathing exercises, walking in nature, meditation, and listening to music. All of which are mindful ways to engage with your life.
Keeping up with a mindfulness practice won’t solve all of your problems but will cultivate resilience and a sense of inner peace that will help you reframe things in a more positive light. Mindfulness practice isn’t necessarily about being happy. It’s about stepping into a space of awareness. You can learn to gain control of your focus through practice and repetition, to choose how you want to respond to difficult situations; how you want to relate to difficult moments, instead of the old patterns that lead to anxiety, depression, or feeling overwhelmed.
Mental Health Resources
And without further ado, here’s a list of helpful resources to support you and your loved ones with a range of issues including depression, anxiety, relationships, trauma, grief, and more:
Learning the Signs and Symptoms
NAMI – (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Signs and symptoms that might signal a mental health condition.
Lifeline – Suicide Prevention Hotline 800-273-8255
Bring Change to Mind Crisis Text Line – text BC2M to 741741
National Alliance on Mental Illness – 1-800-950-NAMI (1-800-950-6264)
SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) – 1-800-662-HELP (1-800-662-4357)
Toolkits & Guides
Mental Health America – Building Your Coping Toolbox.
NAMI – Mental Health Education Courses.
Mentally Healthy Schools – Building Healthy Habits Toolkit resources for primary & secondary education settings.
Intelligent.com – College planning guide that explains the resources and accommodations most schools provide, and offers tips on how to access these mental health services.
IvyPanda.com – Offers a comprehensive article filled with over 200 free/ affordable resources for students navigating mental health challenges.
Bring Change to Mind – Tools to understand and learn how to talk to anyone about mental illness.
Caring.com – A comprehensive guide that addresses the emotional and physical challenges of caregiving. This guide covers managing burnout, stress relief, and exploring respite care options, among other topics.
Camp Lejeune Claims Center – Veterans cancer resource guide filled with helpful tips to help veterans talk to their children about their cancer diagnosis. This guide also provides advocacy resources for veterans with cancer.
ResumeBuilder – This guide helps those living with mental health conditions gain employment while receiving treatment. It provides specific resume and cover letter writing tips, example interview questions, as well as tips to stay confident and centered while pursuing their professional goals.
Therapy, Support Groups & Networks
Cerebral – Meet with a telehealth prescriber or therapist who can diagnose and treat anxiety and depression with or without medication online.
Open Path Collective – This nonprofit serves clients who lack health insurance or whose health insurance doesn’t provide adequate mental health benefits. Helping members access their choice of affordable in-person or online care from vetted mental health professionals.
Better Help – The world’s largest network of licensed, accredited, and experienced therapists who can help you with the ability to communicate when and how you want.
Defining Wellness Centers – Provides addiction and mental health services for the BIPOC community.
Therapists of Color – When therapy looks like you, you no longer feel misunderstood.
Asian Mental Health Collective – AMHC aspires to make mental health easily available, approachable, and accessible to Asian communities worldwide.
LatinX Therapy – Founded in 2018 with the mission to de-stigmatize mental health in the Latinx community. You can find a directory of mental health therapists and other helpful information for the Latinx community.
LGBT+ Mental Health Resource Center – Serving the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning community by providing confidential peer support and local services.
Granite Recovery Center – Offers drug and alcohol rehabilitation facilities featuring an extensive selection of therapies and program options that treat individuals who have often experienced unique and traumatic experiences that stem from their LGBTQ identity.
Mental Health America – A comprehensive list of support groups, including specialized support.
National Federation of Families – A nationwide organization advocating for the rights of families who have children with emotional, behavioral, mental health, and substance use challenges.
Boca Recovery Center – Boca Recovery Center provides the best quality care in the treatment of drug and alcohol addiction. They are passionate about helping people overcome addiction and supporting them to rebuild their lives on a foundation of health and well-being.
Podcasts & Webinars
Be Here Now Network – A network of spirituality and mindfulness podcasts, articles, and videos.
The Happiness Lab With Dr. Laurie Santos – This podcast is based on the psychology course she teaches at Yale. Laurie will take you through the latest scientific research and share some surprising and inspiring stories that will change the way you think about happiness.
On Purpose Podcast – On Purpose podcast offers up fascinating conversations between former monk, Jay Shetty, and some of the most insightful people in the world.
PsychAlive – Free webinars to assist in your mental health journey.
Ergos Institute of Somatic Education – Free interviews and webinars on how to heal trauma.
Lastly, here are a few resources to support you in navigating your life with more self-compassion, mindfulness, and calm:
Mindfulness & Meditation Apps
Insight Timer – Insight Timer offers a free massive library of free meditations, yoga classes, and other live courses which you can filter by what you’re looking for. They also have a premium membership option for about $60/year.
Simple Habit – Offers free, short meditations and bedtime stories from top mindfulness experts. There are also monthly, yearly, and lifetime premium membership options.
Smiling Mind – This not-for-profit app features hundreds of meditations, enough to keep you engaged without overwhelming you with choices. The app also offers a variety of specialized programs for families, children, teens, healthcare workers, and educators (including curricula they can use in the classroom); all developed with the help of psychologists and health professionals.
Mindfulness.com – Free to sign up, this app offers guided meditations, articles, and courses led by former monks, spiritual leaders, psychologists, professors, and other experts.
Mental Health and Mindfulness Articles & Meditations
By no means is this an exhaustive list of mental health resources. It’s meant to be more of a jumping-off point because it can be quite overwhelming to wade through all of the available information out there on your own.
I hope you can find some value in the information provided here. Please share this post with someone you know who might need support in their mental health journey. Take care.