As we approach national Mental Health Awareness Week, Guernsey Mind is highlighting the importance of being kind to others and the benefit it can have on our own wellbeing.
The week is organised by the Mental Health Foundation, which claims acts of kindness can reduce isolation, stress and help to create a sense of belonging.
"Kindness strengthens our relationship with ourselves and everyone around us," said Executive Director of Guernsey Mind, Emily Litten. "It helps us to try and understand and not to blame when things go wrong and to reach out when we need to and create healthy connections where each party can be jointly open and vulnerable.
"Kindness enables us to create positive boundaries around meeting our own needs, to build trust in our ability to make our own decisions and accept other people's right to do the same thing. It helps us deal with negative thoughts, to accept that we aren’t perfect and to accept that same imperfection in other people."
Pictured: Emily Litten of Guernsey Mind.
The Mental Health Foundation has defined 'kindness' as doing something towards yourself or others which is motivated by a genuine desire to make a positive difference.
"As we begin to emerge from the corona virus pandemic, thinking about kindness and what it means can help us to explore the kind of society we would like to be," continued Ms Litten. "What has been truly amazing about the last few months is how resilient we all are. Regardless of gender, job title, age, or income level, we have all been resilient, respectful and kind to each other in our different ways, and using our different strengths. There has been no them and us, just #GuernseyTogether.
"This week gives us an opportunity to reflect on this and think about what we can learn and take forward as we head towards reintegration."
Guernsey Mind is encouraging is people in the island to be kind to themselves as well as others, while recognising other things we can do to improve our mental wellbeing. One idea is putting together a 'mental health toolbox' of coping skills and strategies.
Pictured: Guernsey Mind is advising people to put together a 'mental health toolbox'.
"During the week we will share tools and ideas about how to be kind to ourselves and encourage people to build their own toolbox," Ms Litten explained.
"We have been very focused on being kind to other people and this is an opportunity to be kind to ourselves and to reflect on who we are and what we want. To understand how to provide a safe space for our own emotional needs, and to be more compassionate to our own failures. If we can do this for ourselves, we can do this for everybody in our lives."
Guernsey Mind will share further information throughout the week via its Facebook page.
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