Whilst today Feb 7th is #TimeToTalk Day, a day that symbolises the need for people to talk about their Mental Health, this also raises a perhaps unspoken point around the need to write about mental health as much as it does to talk about it.
Writing about your own mental health can be extremely daunting to begin with, with many questioning where to start, should it be public or private, what level of detail should you go to and other similar questions. However it needn’t be daunting for long and with the following suggestions I think you too can start writing about your own mental health more, even if it is just for simple tracking purposes.
So lets look at how you could make getting started with this, perhaps, a little easier.
Firstly lets look at it whether you should write publicly or privately and the benefits of both
Writing Publicly, whether it be a blog post like this, on a site like this, or via Facebook or Twitter, can be hugely beneficial, especially if you have a number of good & supportive people that are following your blogs/posts/tweets as they will likely be open to providing you moral support on the good and the bad days.
When writing Publicly I would recommend starting with something as simple as
Today was a good day #MentalHealth #mhasl #HappyToTalk
Today was a bad day #MentalHealth #mhasl #NotHappyToTalk
These are just some simple examples of how simple you can go with this but you can go the other way too and be more detailed instead.
Today was a good day as I was able to control not only my anxiety, but I also felt like I had a happy day overall which is means my management of my depression is getting better.
or perhaps something more like this
Today was horrendous, I had a pretty bad panic attack and since I’ve been unable to stop crying at small things that typically wouldn’t get me upset, like running out of milk so I couldn’t have a much needed comfort bowl of coco pops.
These are good examples of micro-blogging and if you get into the habit of posting these kinds of items in public, over time you’ll find it easier to open up further, when and most importantly, if you feel confident to do so.
However, openly publishing about how your mental health is, is not for everyone, and if you don’t feel comfortable in doing so, then please don’t feel like you have to, especially as no one is going to force you to do so.
Some people find that writing privately is much easier and also much more beneficial, and whilst this can be for many reasons, typically writing privately is for many the easier initial option, often this is because they don’t have to worry about any potential negative interaction from anyone. If you think that writing privately may be more useful for you then there are a few different ways you can do this and here are some of my own suggestions (comments on other suggestions are welcomed)
- Get a dairy and write it in there, the benefit of this is that it is there for you to look back on.
- Send yourself a daily email using the same subject line.
- Update a daily spreadsheet with a simple rating system of how you felt the day went.
- If you use Facebook you can actually make a post that is only visible to you. This is something that I used to do quite regularly especially on particularly special dates in the year, like birthday’s / Christmases etc as this allows me to see how whether or not over the years has my Mental Health been improving and how well it has been improving.
- Post it notes – these are great for jotting down a quick thought and sticking it somewhere like the back of a wardrobe door. Be sure to date them as they can be interesting to come back to in future when tidying up and either reliving the bad days or reliving the good days. If you go with this I’d recommend either using the left door for bad days and right for good days, or using the front for the good and the back for the bad. That way if you are having a bit of a bad day you can go to your door and read through the good times to help cheer you up.
Personally, I do a mix of both Public and Private posts and at varying levels of detail with a much higher proportion of them being private, but when I do post publicly I tend to find that I get support from others, whether that be publicly for others to see or privately via DMs.
If you have any further questions that you think would be good to be added to this post please either comment on this post or you can find me on twitter where you can DM me.
If you are interested in writing here on mhasl then please see this previous post where you can find out more and if you do publish any tweets about mental health please add the #mhasl ( as we are tracking this hashtag)
I’m Ryan ( twitter | blog ) a successful IT Consultant & the founder of mhasl and Mental Health Affects Someone Like Me