May is Mental Health Awareness Month
May is recognized each year as Mental Health Awareness Month. In the wake of over a year of global disruption, societal conflict, and forced isolation due to the pandemic, mental health resources have never been in higher demand. Take an honest look at yourself, how are you feeling today? How has this week been? Have you noticed any changes that concern you? For example, are you feeling anxious at strange or inappropriate-feeling times? Or maybe you have recently and inexplicably lost interest in activities that you once enjoyed?
It may be helpful to explore some mental health websites or speak with a professional counselor to get perspective on what you are experiencing and work actively towards improving your quality of life. We want to highlight some useful links that focus on your mental health and self-care skills, as well as review essential community support services.
- Mental Health America offers a mental health toolkit, with separate links to different pages focusing on key topics such as adapting after trauma and stress, dealing with anger and frustration, processing big changes, and more.
- The National Alliance for Mental Illness continues to be an excellent local resource for mental health support. Be sure to check out the virtual NAMIwalks event May 22, and the May 2021 mental health awareness page to share your story.
- City employees have free access to the Boston Navigate Wellness Portal, which offers wellness resources, healthy recipes, seminars, and more to help you maintain your mental health.
- The National Suicide Prevention Hotline provides free, 24/7 phone support to any person in distress, as well as prevention and crisis hotlines for friends and family. The number is 1-800-273-8255.
- The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance continues to offer online support groups for individuals facing depression, bi-polar, and anxiety. They also offer groups for friends and families of people struggling with these mental health issues. It's free to register, completely anonymous and confidential, and no webcam is necessary.
- Care Dimensions is a hospice organization that also hosts numerous support groups for those struggling with grief and loss. Check out their event calendar for topics, dates and times.
- If you are looking for long term therapy, you can work either through your insurance provider’s list, or use the following online resources to search for a therapist in your area.
And as always, you can reach out to us at the Employee Assistance Program to speak to a professional counselor for an evaluation, counseling, or assistance with referrals. We are available 7 a.m. - 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, at 617-635-2200, and offer on-call hours from 6 - 8 p.m. Have a safe and healthy month.