Wednesday 10th October is World Mental Health Day. Mental health can take the form of many different things, but what is it and what does it mean?
The definition of mental health is: “a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being.” It can take the form of depression, low mood, anxiety, schizophrenia, and thoughts of suicide, just to name a few.
It is very widely thought that exercise and a good diet helps with all forms of well-being, both physically and mentally. The work we do in the community helps to break down the barriers created by society and ultimately helps to improve the way in which people live their lives.
One such project is run in partnership with Bury SAPAS, and that's our Walking Football project. Some of the participants are people with a history of mental health problems. We caught up with one of the participants who has asked that his identity is kept anonymous, so we will refer to him as Andy for the purpose of this story.
Andy has been attending the Walking Football sessions at Castle Leisure Centre for almost a year. He was referred to us by a mental health support group which he is a member of. When asked about his story, Andy said the following: “Coming to Walking Football has benefited me massively, both physically as well as mentally. I was diagnosed with schizophrenia at an early age. I have seen and spoken to different people, been on lots of different types of medications, and now it seems I am finally starting to get it under control. Initially, I was worried and anxious about coming to Walking Football, but now I’m here, and I love it! Everyone has been so welcoming and accepting. I’d recommend anyone give it a go and talk about their problems.”
This is only one person whose well-being has been improved, but there are many others. On World Mental Health Day, and in fact every day, let's talk about how we feel, and let's listen. What you see on the outside isn’t always how people are feeling on the inside.
If you feel depressed, anxious, or that you can’t go on any longer, don’t suffer in silence, please pick up the phone and speak to someone on the following numbers:
Mind: 03001233393 or text 86463
Samaritans: 116 123