Time to Talk Day 2022 is on Thursday 3rd February and I think this year, talking is even more important, after two years of pandemic related uncertainty. None of us are where we thought we'd be this time last year and we are all struggling. Sadness and feeling sad have become a day to day occurrence and we all need a boost. I was absolutely convinced that the vaccines would have allowed a return to normal life by now - and I don't mean a new normal, I mean I really hoped and believed that life would be back to how it was back in January 2020. Nearly there though and it is time to fight back!
Being someone who is a natural chatterbox I find it easy to talk and I also like to listen and help others. But not everyone is like me and sometimes talking about our problems can feel impossible. But a problem shared, really is a problem halved.
I realised during the last two years how much I missed the casual interactions with my friends. I love time at home and I enjoy solitude but I also know I need a balance of being with people too. Day after day spent at home alone are not good for my mental health. And as you know I am not a keen supporter of the WFH (Work from Home) trend - post-pandemic I think offices should reopen, especially for the younger generation. They need the mentoring and social support, we all do. And the economy needs city centres to be busy again!
And with the pandemic having taken a devastating toll on the physical health of millions of people, the mental health effects could prove even more enduring. A study published in The Lancet attempts to quantify the impact of the pandemic on mental health and wellbeing around the world. The authors estimate there has been a 28% increase in cases of depression (source The Economist).
So how do we encourage others to open up about their struggles and talk to us?
And if we are suffering, how can we feel comfortable with reaching out and talking to a friend, a colleague or counsellor and asking for help?
Start a conversation
If you are worried about someone you care about ...
What if you find it really difficult to talk about your worries ...
Being brave and finally talking and sharing your worries feels worse than the reality, your loved one will want to help and be relieved you are finally willing to talk.
Time to Talk has a lot of really helpful resources including personal stories presented in a simple, concise format and you can download resources and tips to help you if you are struggling or you are worried about someone you love.
Back in February 2020 I had a recurrence of my low mood and I decided to open up about some of my struggles on my blog. For Time to Talk Day 2020 I wrote about my personal struggle with emetophobia and how I overcame my phobia and anxiety. I also talk quite openly about my perimenopause journey and my decision to take HRT. I am not an expert but I hope by sharing my own story, I can help others find the support they need.
I've been listening to two podcasts recently The Don't Buy Her Flowers Podcast with Steph Douglas which then introduced me to How to be Sad by Helen Russell, a book and a podcast. I've not read the book yet but I plan to. It is the 'happiest book about being sad' and Helen shares everything she has learnt about getting happier, by being sad, better! We all need to be sad sometimes, to feel happy. It makes sense. Anna Jones says "A very persuasive account of how accepting sadness as a key part of our human experience can lead to more fulfilment and ultimately more happiness - this book reframes feeling sad."
I have some amazing friends and I know that they and my family are always there for me if I need to talk. My inbox is always open and I love to hear from my readers, if you need to talk or you just want to ask me something about menopause for example, please do get in touch.
Finally, let's all get back to normal life now, get out there, see friends, hug and have fun!
Disclaimer: 'do buy me flowers' haha and the book link uses an affiliate code.
My red coat is from Next last year but similar here.
Welcome to Fifty & Fab, a lifestyle blog to inspire you. I am a blogger with a passion for writing about health, menopause, fitness, beauty and style with a focus on the over 50's.
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Hi, I’m Michelle and my blog Fifty & Fab is all about my journey into and through my 50s. I started this blog in 2016 with the purpose of helping other women at this stage of life. I’m delighted that my blog has grown to over 13k visitors per month. Visit my Work with Me page and request my Media Kit for details of product reviews, blogging services and social media content creation.
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