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World Mental Health Day – Edition: Suicide Prevention

Today is World Mental Health Day.

Did you know that World Mental Health Day started back in 1992?  This year’s theme focuses on Suicide Prevention.  With the celebrity suicides we’ve been seeing lately, and the conversation around it being tied to feelings of isolation in an increasingly disconnected world, I want to take this opportunity to share a few tips for mental health in the digital age.  This list could be so much longer but I wanted 3 actionable ones you could take right away. 

So here they are:

1. Ditch the comparison game.

I’ve talked about this before but this one deserves a repeat mention. While social media feeds are beautiful forms of expression, it is just that, an expression. If at any point you start to feel down about your own life, it might mean a little break from scrolling is in order.  

2. Press Mute

In other words, turn off (or at least reduce) your notifications. Let’s face it, most of us are addicted to our phones. That’s not just a guess – it’s been scientifically proven.  Every time we hear or see a notification, we get a kick of dopamine to our brain.  Simply turning off our notifications will help prevent us from getting that quick fix when that “ding/vibrate” happens. Be intentional about both when you check your feed and how long you spend on it.  

3. Double Up on Your IRL encounters

For those of you who are like me who had to learn what “IRL” is, it means “in real life”. Yes, that is now a legit expression.   

So what do I mean “double up”?  What I hear a lot of is how challenging “fitting everything in” is.  Working out, a social life and work?!!! Commit to grabbing your friend that you would normally be IM’ing and plan a real life get together while doing something active.  Let’s face it, 1 hour of texting equates to about 10 min of conversation. (I have no statistical data for this, simply a guesstimate from my own experience of realizing after the hour of texting, re-reading the conversation took me about 10 min… or less).  So if you’re really only going to have that much of “quality conversation”, well at the very least you can be spending the other 50 min sweating it out.  BAM, you just fit in socializing, a sweat sesh and bragging rights to being super efficient. Plus bonus, if you take a selfie of you and your buddy, you have something to post for instagram. 

In seriousness though, when you ask someone “how are you?”, answering “busy” has become the new “good”.  So if time is of the essence, then efficiency is at least a small step towards bigger changes towards some balance. 

Hey, you’re busy! I get it, so I’m only giving you 3 tips! But I’d love to hear what you think, comment below or send me a dm! And for goodness sakes, take care of that beautiful brain of yours! 

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