Mental Health Awareness Month Ideas

By May 1, 2024May 6th, 2024Mental Health Awareness Month Ideas
mental health awareness month

What is Mental Health Awareness Month?

Mental Health Awareness Month is an annual campaign to promote the importance of mental health topics in the public eye. It also raises awareness about mental health needs and trends, and shares resources for addressing mental health challenges.

When is Mental Health Awareness Month?

Mental Health Awareness Month always takes place in May. This year, May 2024 has the theme “mental health in a changing world”. With a focus on the destigmatization of mental illness, mental health advocacy, and education, the goal of this annual honoring of the mental health field is to help more suffering people know that they’re not alone.

What is the importance of self-care when it comes to your mental health?

woman doing yoga at a beachMental health requires self-care. How do you take care of the health of your thoughts, your emotions, your moods, and your states of being?

Take a look around you. How does humanity seem to be doing? Are we healthy? Are we sane? Are we happy?

If you’re like us here at Villa Kali Ma, you can see that something is rotten in the state of Denmark, as the quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet goes. All is not well. In fact, a lot is wrong. People are more despairing, more suicidal, more addicted, more materialistic, and more lost in distractions than ever.

On the other side, there is a growing movement of people who are choosing to generate bubbles of positivity, autonomy, and creative responses to the conditions we’re in. Many are more awake, aware, responsive, and on point than ever before.

Facing the world’s polarities and pressures can unbalance us internally, but it also means we have a choice. We are allowed to orient and align ourselves towards what we personally feel to be resonant with peace, sanity, and goodness, even if it goes against the grain.

We can choose to be a lighthouse, giving off peaceful, calm signals of warmth and light in the planetary storm. By keeping the flame of mental health lit in our own personal lighthouses, we help everyone who may feel lost at sea. We lend comfort and kindness and contribute a little bit of brightness that collectively, adds up to a lot – enough to see by, enough to find one’s way home by.

But to do this, we have to practice our own mental health awareness, noticing when we have no flame in our tower, but instead have become part of the madness.

What are the signs when our own mental health is off? Do you recognize any of the following?

What can we do when our mental health is showing signs of wear and tear when our flame is blown out? We can use self-care to light the lamp again.

5 5-Minute Mental Health Hacks to Reignite Your Self Care

1. Reorient to the Now

Stop what you’re doing and go outside. Look at something green and growing if you can find anything. Whatever outside space you’re able to access, stay there for 5 minutes and allow yourself to orient slowly by looking around you, observing everything you can see with your eyes.

Now listen for everything you can hear in this now moment. Now physically contact what you can touch and feel with your hands or sense on the skin (temperature, breeze, moisture or dryness, any textures you want to touch). Finally, notice any scents or other environmental now-moment signals. Take a deep breath and let it out slowly before you go back inside.

2. Move your body

Do 5 quick minutes of movement right now. For a gentle version, stand up and, starting with your head and neck, gently stretch every section of your body, down to your tippy toes. Pay attention to any portions of your body that are asking to be stretched and let them stretch in ways that feel good. For a more energizing version, instead do 5 minutes of vigorous activity (squats, jumping jacks, whatever gets your heart pumping). Don’t forget to enjoy the afterglow feeling!

3. Listen to Classical Music

Listen to a piece of classical music all the way through, not doing anything else and closing your eyes as you listen. Classical music soothes and enlivens the nervous system, restoring balance, calm and liveliness.

Here’s a beautiful piece that’s under five minutes. Of course, you can also choose your own! How about a Mental Health Month playlist?

4. Go Positive

Do a quick journal writing for 5 minutes, free-writing or listing in response to any or all of the following questions:

What am I grateful for?

What and whom in my life am I fond and affectionate of?

What and whom do I love?

What do I feel bright and positive about?

What do I self-approve of, about myself and my life?

5. Play Creatively

Play is regulating to the nervous system, and gets you back into your joy-body (opposite of Eckhart Tolle’s “pain-body”.

For five full minutes, scribble or draw something with your non-dominant hand, whichever one you don’t normally lead with. The drawing should be really “bad”. If you want some prompts, here are a couple of things: (draw anything that sparks your fancy, or something else!):

Draw a dog wearing pajamas talking to a rabbit wearing a superhero outfit

Draw a pegasus making friends with a unicorn while perched on two stars in the same constellation

Draw a bowl of spaghetti that fell into some long grass

Draw what your Dad would look like if he was part cat

Villa Kali Ma helps women experience Mental Health

woman embracing joy and freedom

Villa Kali Ma is dedicated to helping women recover lives of meaning, joy, and purpose. We help women feel what it’s like to be happy, strong, and mentally healthy, every month of the year!

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