Health & Wellness Mental Health

May is Mental Health Month plus the Mindful in May Challenge

May 2, 2018
Mental Health

 

Mental Health

 

May is mental health month

May is Mental Health Month in the United States, in Australia we have it later in the year, however, anytime is the right time to put the spotlight on Mental Health.

I was researching Mental health statistics for Australia and was staggered to read that each year, 1 in 5 Australians will experience mental health.  Although society has become more aware of the importance of good mental health, there is still some stigma attached.  This prevents some people from asking for help and they turn to substance abuse or worse – suicide.

We need to accept that mental health is just as significant as heart disease or any other illness.

If we know someone who we think might be struggling with life, ask them if they are okay.  Let them know there is no shame in asking for help.

Mindful in May Challenge

May is also the month I signed up for Mindful in May Challenge, an online mindfulness program which also raises funds to bring clean water to those in developing countries.  Each day I will be receiving emails with guided meditations and exercises to create more calm in my life.

The challenge is to spend 10 minutes each day meditating and being mindful.

Plus my contribution will have a positive difference to the lives of others.

Research shows that mindfulness can have a great impact on reducing stress and anxiety and helps to bring inner calm.

Mindfulness is not the total answer for mental health, however, it is one tool that we can all use to focus our thoughts and be present in the moment.

5 Ways to improve your mental health and well being.

  • Stay active
  • Socialise
  • Meditate
  • Unplug from technology for a period each day or at least one full day each week
  • Have a purpose in your day

I will be updating you on my progress with the Mindful in May Challenge throughout the month.

REMEMBER:  We all have our ‘down’ days but if they become more often or you feel you aren’t coping IT IS OKAY TO ASK FOR HELP!

What is one thing you can do today to improve your mental health and well-being?

Do you know someone who might be struggling?

Let’s Keep Sizzling!

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29 Comments

  • Reply Retirement Reflections May 2, 2018 at 09:20

    Hi, Sue – I’m so impressed that you went straight from the ‘A to Z Finish Line’ to a brand new challenge.
    Cheering you on for ‘Mindful in May.’ Good luck!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 09:25

      I do love a challenge Donna!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 09:26

      BTW just wanted to let you know that this time I could comment through wordpress.com and it went through! YAY

  • Reply Jennifer Jones May 3, 2018 at 08:27

    Sue this sounds like the perfect challenge to follow up AtoZ. Looking forward to your mindfulness posts. Thursday night is my long walking night. Mindfulness usually comes to me on a long walk

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 08:56

      Your Thursday night long walk sounds the perfect time to be mindful Jennifer. I’m looking forward to learning more about that and meditation this month, now that the craziness of AtoZ is over. x

  • Reply Jan Wild May 3, 2018 at 10:07

    Definitely staying active and positive social connection are so important. Good nutrition too. Have a wonderfully mindful May x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 08:57

      Such simple steps Jan but sometimes very difficult if someone is feeling depressed. I’m looking forward to hopefully being able to turn off my mind a little during the guided meditations. x

  • Reply Natalie May 3, 2018 at 11:09

    Great five tips that you shared, Sue. Plus it’s wonderful that your participation in Mindful in May will have a positive difference to the lives of others. I look forward to reading your progress update.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 08:58

      Thanks so much Natalie, 3 days in and I’m learning so much already x

  • Reply Sydney Shop Girl May 3, 2018 at 11:23

    Challenge accepted, Sue! Not ideal but I’m thinking I could use part of my drive home to meditate. At the traffic lights mainly!

    SSG xxx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 09:00

      Good for you SSG and taking a moment even at the traffic lights can help.

  • Reply Leanne May 3, 2018 at 13:02

    It was great to see that you and Min took up the challenge Sue and that it has ongoing benefits to others who are less fortunate than us. It came at a good time because I don’t think you would have had the headspace for mindfulness in the middle of the AtoZ hurly burly! I’ll be interested to see what benefits you gain from it all.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 09:01

      Yes, neither of us realised the other was doing the challenge so it is nice to have someone to compare notes with. x

  • Reply writeofthemiddle May 3, 2018 at 13:42

    I didn’t realise it was Mental Health Month in the US Sue. I think it’s fabulous that there is a lot more attention and understanding around mental health these days. It all helps to get rid of the stigma that can surround it. As for Mindful in May – Day 3 today and as you know I’ve also signed up. Its an area that fascinates me and I love that by doing this I am also helping others. I haven’t done today’s meditation or watched the interview yet but I’m loving it so far. Every little bit of wisdom I can get from others I’m so grateful for. I too will most likely share some things I’ve learned from participating in MiM on my blog. #TeamLovinLife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 08:55

      Yes it is Min and as my husband suffers from PTSD, Mental Health is front and centre with me. We need to take away the stigma so people feel comfortable talking about how they are feeling. I found Day 2 hard sitting for that long but I really also enjoyed Day 3. Have a great weekend x

  • Reply Kathy Marris May 3, 2018 at 19:50

    Sue I have a friend who is really struggling at present and it’s so difficult to get her out of her house to even have a coffee. I believe that some of us cope with life’s stresses better than others. I tend to be ok with a moderate amount of stress, but I have been tipped over the edge a few times. It’s not a nice feeling, but fortunately for me I’ve always had great family support around me. #TeamLovinLife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 05:36

      Hi Kathy when we are struggling it can be a mission just getting out of bed. I had coffee with a friend yesterday who is having a rough time and just having a chat about general things helped us both. When you are that down you really need the support of family and friends. x

  • Reply Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit May 4, 2018 at 06:57

    I suck at meditating. Sitting there just makes me think of all the things I could be doing! LOL, One day I’ll meditate. When I’m fully retired I’ll go to meditation school.

    I do practice mindfulness though in certain situations. #teamlovinlife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 4, 2018 at 08:51

      I know Leanne, me too. The second guided meditation we had to sit still for 13 minutes, I was definitely fidgeting after a couple of minutes but it was a good lesson. Have a great weekend. x

  • Reply Miriam May 4, 2018 at 17:05

    May is a big month. Wonderful challenge for you for the month ahead Sue. I’ve done Mindful in May for the past two years and throughly enjoyed it. This year it snuck up on me. Enjoy your Mindful May. xo

  • Reply Deborah May 5, 2018 at 15:08

    Mindfullness is something I try to work on Sue but it’s a struggle for me as I’m slightly manic and have a very buzzy mind. I think at least it’s something I’m conscious of though so hopefully that helps. #teamlovinlife

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 6, 2018 at 11:25

      It isn’t easy Deborah and I find it hard to meditate so hopefully I will learn something over 31 days. Have a great weekend xx

  • Reply Rebecca Olkowski (@baby_boomster) May 7, 2018 at 16:19

    My meditation is my morning walk. I walk for at least an hour and there is no one to distract me. I say affirmations and just observe what is around me. I love it.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 8, 2018 at 06:31

      That is a perfect way to meditate Rebecca because you get some movement with your walk as well as exercising your mind. Enjoy!

  • Reply Sue Loncaric May 11, 2018 at 12:18

    Hi Leanne thanks for your continued support which always makes me feel much more positive about blogging. xx

  • Reply Jennifer May 11, 2018 at 20:15

    Mental health is so important and daily meditation is definitely one of those things that helps. I love that your challenge is also helping to bring fresh water to those in need.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 12, 2018 at 05:52

      Hi Jennifer, yes I was pleased it wasn’t just another money making scheme. I feel I’m helping others in need whilst at the same time helping my mental health. Win/Win x

  • Reply Michele @liferedesign101 May 12, 2018 at 03:27

    Mental health has been getting a lot more attention in the US in the past couple of years, largely due to the increase of mass shootings. I hope people are beginning to realize that mental health is real and important. So many children in our schools struggle with mental health, and we don’t do enough to help them. On the positive side, there is also a HUGE mindfulness movement in schools and many teachers are on board with the idea. A friend of mine started a yoga for teachers and classrooms program and her business is booming! I find that encouraging.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 12, 2018 at 05:47

      Hi Michele, there is a big push here in Australia toward more recognition of mental health. Fortunately, we don’t have the mass shootings because of our gun laws but generally society seems to be so mentally unhealthy. People are encouraged to seek help and with lots of advertising I believe the idea of having a mental health problem or even visiting a counsellor or psychologist is losing the stigma which it has had for so long. My husband has PTSD which goes back to the Vietnam War but really only diagnosed about 10 years ago. He recently went to a detox program which was his decision as he was drinking more than he should. He is now 10 weeks without alcohol and I’m so proud of him. Great idea to teach children mindfulness in schools, I believe they do that in the UK as well. So much stress, anxiety and anger in the world but we have to fight it don’t we, Michele?

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