February 13, 2020
by Jillian Cecchini, Managing Editor
As I’m writing this editorial, it happens to be the 10th #BellLetsTalk day. The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) is honouring Bell Canada for its visionary leadership on mental health and is urging everyone across Canada to join this game-changing and important annual conversation. Over the past decade, Bell Let’s Talk has made major strides in reducing the stigma around mental illness. Building on this momentum, Bell is using its sizeable influence to help us move beyond the talking phase.
Expanding the campaign’s focus — from opening conversations to opening doors to improved services — is a natural progression. It speaks to the overwhelming desire of nearly nine in ten people in Canada to have increased funding for mental health services. According to MHCC’s press release, polling data was released that shows what matters most to people when it comes to mental health. Whether it’s suicide prevention or addressing the needs of youth, 85 per cent said mental health care is as important as physical health care.
It’s a new decade, which means now is the ideal time for change. Now is the time to sit back and reevaluate what is making you happy – and simply put, what isn’t. I don’t necessarily believe in new year resolutions even though this editorial may sound like a “new year, new me” piece. I don’t enjoy the pressure of fulfilling goals that might be unrealistic for my lifestyle. I also don’t enjoy the guilt of not living up to said goals. But one goal that I did make for myself last year was fairly simple: selfcare and my mental well-being.
I’ll be transparent – 2019 was a year of many challenges. I recognized that changes needed to be made and reevaluated multiple aspects of my life to get back on the right track. One of the most important lessons I learned was that the way to become the person I want to be is by taking small steps consistently over time.
I believe that making time for self-care is vital to our overall health and happiness, no matter how busy we are. If you need a bit of inspiration, here are the steps I’ve used to make self-care a priority:
Remember, the relationship you have with yourself sets the tone for every other relationship you have. Self-care isn’t selfish – it’s necessary. Let’s end the stigma.