Last month I posted about 5 Ways To Take Care Of Your Mental Health, but what about other people? In this post I’m going to suggest some ways that you can support someone else who may be struggling with their mental health. I’m not a medical professional (yet anyway!) so obviously these are all ideas that I think may be useful. Not all things may be helpful for everyone, but overall I’d recommend them.
4 Ways To Support Someone Struggling With Mental Health:
TIP ONE: Spot The Signs
No, they’re going to do it for you most of the time. You’re probably have to spot the signs that they’re not coping, or they’re struggling more than usual. This will usually be changes in their mood or behaviour, such as eating or sleeping habits or even not doing or enjoying things they usually enjoy. In the future (when I’ve had more time to think about it) I’ll definitely do a post all about spotting the signs.
TIP TWO: Talk To Them
A lot of people probably don’t even need proper professional help if someone is there to support them early enough. Just having someone, a close friend, teacher or relative for instance, to talk to is just enough to reassure them that everything is okay. It might change their mood or perspective on something and gradually they’ll revert back to their ‘normal’ selves. Whereas just talking does help and benefit in most situations, it does depend on the nature and severity of the problem on whether they require any more additional support or assistance.
TIP THREE: Be Kind and Support Them
I think one of the main reasons people don’t like to talk about these kind of problems is because they’re worried about what people are going to think or say. You hear so many stories about people being told to ‘get on with it’ or ‘there’s a lot of people more worse off than you’ which is quite disheartening, so it’s understandable. If someone really opens up to you, try your best to think of the best ways to help and support them because it will really benefit them. Some people who are really struggling are very quick to blow things totally out of proportion and will also be quick to disregard you as not caring if you don’t show you’re really trying.
TIP FOUR: Advise Them To Seek Professional Help
If they begin to seriously deteriorate or they’re not taking any of your suggestions, I would make them take just one piece of advice -to seek professional help. Many may refuse because they think they don’t need it, or they’re too scared to go, but perhaps you could offer to go with them and help them explain the problem. The best place to start is always their GP but this can be a bit hit n’ miss from time to time, I know! Even after referral to a mental health professional (if applicable), the waiting lists are hefty! So, another place you could look is the Mind website. There’s so many tips and advice about how to deal with things, including suggestions of who they should talk to. Some charities even have support groups, online chats and 1-2-1s that they can join.
Hopefully with this advice, you can support whoever it is in need of help. I really hope this post is useful! Like I said at the beginning, this is just what I think. I’m not qualified, apart from being a psychology student!
Thanks for reading- let me know if this is helpful!