As one of the leading healthcare staffing agencies in Canada, Advanced Home Care Solutions takes a strong interest in all areas of wellness – with mental health being a particularly important element. As the world emerges from a two-year pandemic, we find ourselves struggling more than ever with mental health issues. COVID-19 caused many of us to have difficult feelings related to stress, isolation, and divisiveness. In honour of the 71st annual Mental Health Week, there could be no better time to weigh in and put those feelings into words – in other words, name it, don’t numb it.
This year’s Mental Health Week has placed a special focus on EMPATHY. Empathy is generally defined as the ability to sense other people’s emotions, coupled with the ability to imagine what someone else might be feeling. It is the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to and vicariously experiencing the thoughts and experiences of others. Here are some examples of this dynamic as it relates to Mental Health Week and how we can all make a difference.
When someone is struggling, you don’t have to “fix their pain”. Instead, tune in and see through their eyes – this is empathy. Keep in mind that although we may be different, we’re not on different sides. Make the effort to see the world as others do – this is also empathy. And try to remember that you can understand, even if you don’t agree. When you strive to understand someone’s feelings – that is empathy. It’s important to bring empathy alive by starting with the people in your own life – meet them where they are, listen completely, and see the world through their eyes.
Mental Health Week provides an opportunity to recognize the part that we all play in building a society that champions mental health. As social animals, all human beings have a responsibility to help challenge the stigma around mental health and start talking about their feelings and emotions in meaningful ways. One person can truly make a difference, and through connection and conversation create a ripple effect far beyond their own circle. For example, when you ask someone how they’re doing – really LISTEN to their answers and look for authenticity. In much the same way, sharing your own story about personal struggles with mental health can sometimes be an invitation to other people and encourage them to open up and feel like they’re not alone. Using and advocating ‘kind language’ can be an incredible tool with a far-reaching impact that models empathetic behaviour and removes stigma. In addition, encouraging people to see the scientifically proven connection between physical and mental health can have powerful results.
With mental health becoming a highly publicized topic, Advanced Home Care Solutions is perfectly positioned to advocate for increased awareness and best practices in all areas of mental health. We value our staff of health care professionals and understand that the quality of service they are able to provide is directly linked to their individual wellness. These same superstars are also exceptionally trained to identify and deal with various mental health issues they might encounter in the community and beyond.
AHCS is here for you, and together we can showcase the importance of Mental Health Week and make a difference.