Anxiety is the theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week. Anxiety is a normal emotion that we all have, but it can sometimes get out of control and affect us physically and mentally, leading to mental health problems.
Many things can lead to anxiety, such as exam pressures, starting a new job (or losing one), relationships or other significant life events. We can also get anxious about money-related issues and the inability to meet our basic needs, like heating our home or putting food on the table. But anxiety can be made easier to manage and become less of a burden.
Focusing on the topic of anxiety for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week will increase people’s awareness and understanding of what anxiety really is. The Mental Health Foundation aims to provide information on what can help prevent it from becoming an issue.
Alexa Knight, Director of England at the Mental Health Foundation, commented: “We’ve chosen anxiety as the Mental Health Awareness Week theme this year to kickstart a nationwide conversation, encouraging people to share their own experiences and any helpful ideas on how they manage anxiety.”
Together, the Mental Health Foundation have stated they will keep up the pressure to demand change – ensuring that improving mental health is a key priority for the government and society.
Help is always available, and there are many things that we can all do to protect our mental health by effectively managing anxiety. However, what works for one person will be different to another person.
Things that might be helpful include being active, getting outdoors amongst nature, practising breathing techniques, obtaining support to tackle money worries or eating well. Talking to a friend or family member, or spending time with your loved ones, is often an excellent first step to get on the right track.
The Mental Health Foundation has reviewed the evidence for what works to manage anxiety and brought together their top recommendations, which can be found here. If anxiety severely affects your everyday life, you should contact your GP as soon as possible, who can offer additional support and help.
No one should struggle alone.