Launched in 2014, Time to Talk Day has sparked millions of conversations in schools across the country and QM is no exception. Discussing mental health has the power to make a big difference and talking openly can help break down the stigma that surrounds this difficult topic.
From the fantastic Wellbeing Champions to our wellbeing-focused Deputy Head Girl, Queen Margaret’s takes the mental health of our girls very seriously. That is why we would like to remind everyone about our Five Ways to Positive Wellbeing Initiative. The pandemic has presented students across the country with some unique challenges, which can pose a risk to mental health. It’s therefore important to encourage our girls to take a moment and think about how they can look after their own wellbeing whilst learning remotely:
#QMConnect We all know that social relationships are an important buffer against mental illness. With this in mind, try to keep in touch with people as much as you can when staying at home. Call friends and family instead of emailing them - simply asking someone what their weekend was like can make a big difference.
#QMBeActive Studies have shown that physical activity helps people release those happy endorphins we all need. Trying to stay active every day can have a big positive impact on your mental health. We recommend that girls try to get outside during their lunch if they can and make it fun! Go for a run, walk or a cycle around the block. Even if you cannot leave the house, there are fun and easy ways of slotting in some exercise time - like the QM Sport Department's Daily Challenges.
#QMTakeNotice It’s important we all take notice and try to savour ‘the moment’ to broaden our awareness and enhance our wellbeing. Keeping up with your workspace clutter, noticing the change in season or your family’s feelings and even changing up your daily walk route can all help. The goal is to keep connected with the world around you and live in the moment.
#QMLearn Continued learning enhances our self-esteem and provides some structure to our daily lives. Keeping on top of schoolwork and setting yourself two productive tasks to do per day can help with your mental wellbeing. There are always plenty of new activity ideas for girls to try their hand at in the School's 'Community Corner'.
#QMGive It has been shown that individuals who report a greater interest in helping others are more likely to rate themselves as happy. With this in mind, try to be there for those around you and watch out for moments where you can be helpful. This could be anything, from delivering shopping to someone who is shielding, to video calling elderly friends and family for a much needed catch up.
The Five Ways to Positive Wellbeing initiative provides some inspiration for simple steps which can be taken to safeguard your own mental health. The main thing to highlight is the importance of communication. The more conversations about our mental health that take place, the more barriers we can break.
At times like this, it is even more important that we all try to have open conversations about mental health and stay open and honest with each other whilst learning remotely. Click here for more information on Time To Talk Day.
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