Hi everyone. I just want to start by introducing myself. My name is Shirley Allmark but please call me Shirl!
I am part of the Learning and Development Team and I am also a Mental Health Nurse. Mental health is something I am really passionate about, and a couple of years ago I joined the ‘Time to Change’ campaign and signed up as a ‘Champion’. My idea was to try and raise awareness of mental health at work and get people talking about it.
Mental health is being talked about a lot at the moment in the media. Celebrities, footballers and even the Royal Family are getting involved, talking openly about their experiences with mental health. This is a step in the right direction as it helps reduce the stigma and creates great role models. People talking can help save people’s lives (Fact).
Quite a few years ago I had my own challenges with mental health. I had depression that resulted in me having to take time off work. I went through a really difficult time, so I know from personal experience how isolated you can feel, especially from work, your colleagues and sometimes even your friends. This contributes to the difficulties you’re already having. On occasion, I still have difficulties, especially at certain times of the year. I still need to look after my mental health in the same kind of ways I look after my physical health.
So let’s get talking…… Let’s share……
Every year, the Time to Change Campaign promotes a ‘Time to Talk Day’. This year, it will take place on Thursday 6th February (tomorrow!). With 1 in 4 of us experiencing a mental health problem in any given year, it’s a great time to get involved.
If you are interested in getting involved here’s a link to some great activities you can do at work. There is a conversation pack and there are some great games here
If you do, let me know how it goes.
Even better: if you as passionate about mental health as I am, go on the website and sign up as a ‘Champion’. There are loads of activities to help support you.
Please also contribute to the blog; let me know your thoughts, let me know what you would like us to discuss. I am planning to do a monthly blog, so please if you want get involved, talk, ask questions, and share! Help me to break down those barriers!
Talk to you soon,