In this New Year’s message, I’d like to share thoughts about three factors of behavioral health that have particular meaning to LEAD: Awareness, Prevention and Access.
Raising awareness and educating about depression are the essence of LEAD’s mission. I believe strongly that the more people talk about and learn about depression, stigma will be reduced and people will be more likely to reach out for help when needed. Let’s all resolve to keenly listen this year when others share their struggles, and guide them to helpful resources (such as those found on LEAD’s website: www.leadpittsburgh.org )
Before LEAD created our SCoRE and CoRE resilience education programs, a trusted mentor shared his hope with us—that people would learn and practice skills to PREVENT anxiety and stress from spiraling downward into deep depression. The potential of prevention drove LEAD forward to build our resilience education programs. It is our great hope that everyone will realize they can build and strengthen their own resilience–just like a muscle—and use 2018 as the year to start their resilience exercises!
Finally, even if one is aware, educated, and resilient, having access to quality help when needed is vital. LEAD will focus on the importance of access in the coming year by helping individuals learn where to start/where to go when either they or a loved one are facing behavioral health challenges. Again, LEAD’s website is one place to look for a list of resources : www.leadpittsburgh.org
My wish for all of you this New Year is that you learn more about mental wellness; you work to strengthen your resilience “muscles,” and that you seek and have access to quality help in your times of need!