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  • Writer's pictureVanessa Bostock

Time to talk day 2022

It's 'Time to Talk day 2022, and today we are encouraged as individuals and communities to talk about mental health.

Run by Mind and Rethink mental Illness (supported by the Co-op), this day was set up to encourage open dialogue with friends, family and colleagues to discuss mental health and to offer support to one another. For me this can start with a cuppa with someone I trust but there are some other areas I’d like to discuss. We hear alot about mental health, and it is really encouraging -that it can be spoken about now in everyday conversation so I wont regurgitate what others are saying, but what I would like to discuss is where I have seen success on a more day to day, low level. For me these three words sum up starting point areas when considering mental wellbeing.

acceptance connection and purpose These three areas have helped me overcome the everyday tough times and the times I thought I would never see the light again. But one step at a time, when each tricky phase appears - and its life, so there are many of these in between the good stuff - I have to overcome that difficult, awkward feeling and accept that this is happening. Interestingly, 'acceptance' as a word is taken from the Latin, 'acquiēscere' meaning 'to find rest in'. And isn’t that so true, when you have finally accepted a tricky situation you feel rested.

One of the definitions in the dictionary is 'willingness to tolerate a difficult situation'. Like it or not it's true - acceptance is key. From acceptance you can move into connection -another step which enables us to open up, find a friend, step outside the comfort zone of denial. Connection can also come in many forms and sometimes can be so unexpected - these are the times to hang on to. If you have an exchange with a stranger and they accept you for who you are - it's a wonderful feeling. Hold on to it as these mini buzzes can be hard to find sometimes.

..and finally onto purpose. That's hard when you enter a new life stage or chapter in your life that wasn't quite what you expected. I found this entering motherhood, but with purpose I found I could ground down my week and realise that there is a reason for what I am doing and it does matter, however small that is, putting the bins out, is purpose, your job, being a parent, volunteering, is all purpose and it all counts. But it must give you satisfaction or the purpose is not there, in which case you need to search in a different direction.

Do foods help?... YES! A small dietary change can make all the difference. At the very least adding omega 3 derived from fish oil into your weekly diet.

With a higher weighting of Omega 6- Omega 3 ratio, consuming SMASH fish (salmon, mackerel, anchovy, sardines, herring), once a week has been scientifically proven to reduce symptoms of depression. Taken daily for approximately 3 months to reach a therapeutic dose has shown benefits in participants during trials.

But fish oils come with a slight warning. The source is key to the effect it will have. Of course there are no rules to supplementation but when considering fish oil choose a brand that has been purified to be free from toxins such as mercury and PCB's. Get fishy my friends..

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