“Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy spirit.”
It’s something my school counsellor said to me one time during one of my weekly visits with him. When I was a teenager, I struggled with depression and anxiety. My high school counsellor, Mr. Boisvert, helped me through lots of rough patches and got me through school to graduation. He was relatable because he also struggled with depression as a high school student. He shared his stories and his challenges with me that he experienced, as a kid, and I found our conversations very comforting because he helped me feel normal. He really taught me that even though sometimes I didn’t feel ‘ok’, those feelings were ‘ok’.
I would tell him the only way I would feel better was if I would exercise. Exercising and getting in good physical condition would help me feel better about the outside of myself and maybe that would help me feel better on the inside. He agreed and said, “It doesn’t matter why you exercise, what matters is that you keep doing it if it is making you feel better mentally. Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy spirit.” So, I learned that when I kept my body and mind healthy, I would enjoy a greater sense of well-being.
What do you do to stay mentally fit?
This week, May 2-8th, is CMHA’s Annual Mental Health Week. I encourage you to #GETLOUD for mental health. Find ways to keep your sense of healthy well-being. Get the clouds in your head cleared away. Exercise your mental demands. Figure out what’s bugging you and deal with it. Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) recommends strategies for you to take charge of your well-being.
SEEK PROFESSIONAL HELP:
There are many people in the Alberta Capital Region that are aware of personal challenges ALL people face and they are there to help. Contact 211 for assistance.
- Speak to your doctor if you have any mental health concerns (There is NO SHAME in going to a psychologist or psychiatrist. There is only SUPPORT)
- Speak to a career counsellor or human resources expert and make a career plan if you need direction in your work life or work related issues
- Talk with a specialist for any relationship challenges with loved ones
- Contact a financial planner or debt advisor for financial challenges
USE RESOURCES AVAILABLE TO YOU:
There are many ways to use resources available to you. Reach out and make a call, or go online, go to the library and find some self-help books, go for a walk, etc.
- Contact your local CMHA branch at cmha.ca
- Check with your employer: Employee Assistance Plans (EAPs) and benefit plans will provide access to counselling services
- Find someone you trust: personal connections are some of the most powerful healing tools for combating depression
- Live well: a healthy lifestyle can boost your mood
United Way of the Alberta Capital Region supports the work of CMHA and many other local agencies that help individuals and families live better and have a healthy well-being. It’s normal and it’s ‘ok’ to feel ‘Not ok’.
In support of your mental health and the health of friends and loved ones, download a tool kit to find out how you can GET LOUD this week!