Mental health stigma
Picture this. It’s Friday...
...and someone in your team is off because of poor mental health.
You and your colleagues rally round them, picking up the workload and being supportive.
Then, over the weekend, you see a picture of them on social media.
They’re out with friends, smiling and looking like everything’s fine.
How would you feel? Would you mention the picture to your colleagues? And what would you say if someone mentioned it to you?
There’s a lot of misinformation out there about mental health. And many of us just don’t understand it as well as we could.
This leads to damaging stigma, and makes life harder for people experiencing poor mental health. But a good way to tackle misinformation is to widen our perspective.
So how can we do this? We can start by educating ourselves by reading about mental health...
...and discussing it with others.
We should also look at our own attitudes. How do we think about mental health now? And how might this affect how we treat people with poor mental health?
And finally, we should try to approach mental health the way we approach physical health.
By understanding its importance, being sensitive to people who struggle, and giving it the same care and attention.
So now picture this. You see the same photo as before. But this time you know more about mental health stigma. Would the picture have the same effect?
Or would you understand that the picture doesn’t tell the whole story?
When we widen our perspective, we build up a much more understanding image of mental health.
Making us much better...
at supporting our friends and colleagues.
For more points of view, watch the module 3 video about how mental health affects thoughts, beliefs and feelings.