Kindness has never been more essential in these testing times, and this marks the topic of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week.
Taking place from 18 to 24 May, Mental Health Awareness Week is a fantastic time to raise awareness of mental health conditions and tackle stigma.
There’s no denying that the current COVID-19 pandemic can be testing on our mental health, but this week, it’s time to celebrate the kindness taking place across the world.
A sense of community has never been more important, and the kindness of strangers has become clear during the pandemic.
From clapping for everyone working on the frontline; getting shopping for neighbours; or checking in with friends over FaceTime, kindness is helping to support us all.
Not only is being kind and helping others beneficial for the wider community, it is a wonderful, powerful tool for our own mental health and wellbeing.
Now, the Mental Health Foundation is calling on all of us to continue to e kind after the pandemic to ensure all members of society are supported and not left behind.
“Kindness could transform our schools, places of work, communities and families,” commented the Mental Health Foundation.
“Let’s shape a society that tips the balance in favour of good mental health, for all of us, but especially for those who are most vulnerable.”
In what could be the most poignant theme during Mental Health Awareness Week, kindness is sure to be a gesture – however small – can have positive rippling effects.
“We have chosen kindness because of its singular ability to unlock our shared humanity,” writes Mark Rowland, chief executive of the Mental Health Foundation.
“Kindness strengthens relationships, develops community and deepens solidarity. It is a cornerstone of our individual and collective mental health.
“Wisdom from every culture across history recognises that kindness is something that all human beings need to experience and practise to be fully alive.”
Evidence shows that helping others can have a positive impact on your own mental health, alongside the mental health of those that you help.
From volunteering to building on your own support networks, keeping things in perspective to making your local community a happier place: kindness can keep us all connected.