Spending time with supportive people

We all need people in our lives we can turn to when we’re struggling, whether for a deep discussion or just a chat. It can take the pressure off of needing to seem ‘okay’ just for a little bit because you know you can trust them. This could be a friend, family member, teacher or mentor- it doesn’t matter as long as you feel safe and able to be real with them. Sometimes we just need a listening ear or a shoulder to cry on, other times advice can be really helpful.

Sometimes I get myself into such a tangled mess in my brain that I just need someone to talk it out with. I don’t need an expert just someone to listen. There’s a teacher at my school who is really good to go to.

If you’re not sure who to go to that you trust or can’t think of anyone in your life at the moment why not contact your local voluntary centre. They often have lots of knowledge around local charities and there are lots of organisations out there that exist specifically to provide young people with mentors and people they can talk to. 

In this video, Dr. Roslyn Law gives some advice about how being around supportive friends and family or other trusted individuals can help you if you're feeling low or anxious or struggling with poor mental health:

What young people have told us:

'I think it helped because if you spend time with the people who support and care about you then hopefully, like me, you won't feel as bad and you will feel like if you have a really bad day then you can always message or talk to them as you will feel like they are always there for you.'

'It is a really helpful way to try and reduce your worries/problems. A problem shared is a problem halved.'

'Having people around you who might know you're struggling and might not be able to engage as you'd like is really helpful. I don't always want to be alone but don't always feel like talking.'

'Try and surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you.'

There isn’t much academic research in the area of self-care for young people who are living with mental health issues. We are trying to find out more about what works for different people so we can better advise other young people what to try.

If you’ve tried this activity when you were struggling in relation to your mental health, please let us know if it helped you and how by clicking on the ‘Did this activity help you’ button.

Did this activity help your mental wellbeing?

If yes, why do you think it helped?

What would you say to other young people who are thinking of trying this?

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