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We Need to Talk About Mental Illness

Taking care of your mental health is just as important as tending to your physical health. January 25th marks Bell Let's Talk day, a day that was started by Bell Canada to raise awareness and funding towards mental health initiatives. You may have seen the  emotionally charged commercials on TV featuring family members, teachers, and coaches that support fellow mental health sufferers. This movement has us talking and here's why...

Watch Howie Mandel's Testimonial: "We've Got to Talk About It"

Four Mental Health Initiatives

Bell is aiming to start a conversation. This conversation does more than just get people talking. Bell has established four main pillars in their initiative which include:

1. Anti-Stigma

Overcome the stigma attached to mental health by driving a conversation to promote awareness and understanding.

A couple sitting together in the grass.

2. Care & Access

Support grassroots agencies, local hospitals, and universities so that Canadians can find support and services.

A patient talking to his doctor.

3. Workplace Health

Mental health is the leading cause of workplace disability. This movement aims to encourage corporate engagement.

A woman with her head down at her desk.

4. Research

Fund research programs that can positively impact the mental health of Canadians.

A doctor studying brain scans.

Five Ways You Can Help

One in five Canadians will suffer from mental illness at one point in their lifetime. You can help end the stigma by taking small actions every day. Today try to:

1. Watch Your Words

Words can help and words can hurt. Stay away from throwing around words and phrases that enhance the stigma like "you're acting crazy" or "this weather is bipolar".

2. Stay Educated

There are a lot of myths around certain mental illnesses. Make sure you know fact from fiction.

3. Be Kind

Being kind is free. Let people know that you are there for them and be kind with both your actions and your words.

4. Listen & Ask

Support can transform someone's day and even their life. Try to be a better listener or ask a loved one how you can help when you notice they are struggling.

5. Talk About It

The first step to recovery. Let go of the stigma, make a positive change, and start this very important conversation.

Let's Continue the Conversation

To learn more about Bell Let's Talk Day visit their page. Check out the resources below if you or someone you know is in need of support in their journey to better mental health:

Kids Help Phone
www.kidshelpphone.ca
1-800-668-6868

Canadian Mental Health Association
www.cmha.ca

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
www.camh.ca

If you are in crisis, please go to your local hospital or call 911 immediately.

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