May is Mental Health Awareness Month, a date that has been observed since 1949 and focuses on the importance of taking care of one’s mental health by reaching people through the media, local events, and screenings.1
With one in every five people experiencing mental illness, this year’s theme “Tools 2 Thrive” is more important than ever. COVID-19 has impacted society in different ways, and that includes added stress and challenges, which can negatively impact our mental health.
The non-profit Mental Health America publishes yearly Toolkits with printable handouts, worksheets, social media, and online modules and other resources to promote awareness and improve one’s mental health. Incorporating the 2020 theme, some of this year’s topics include resources on Creating Healthy Routines, Finding the Positive, Connecting with Others and even an infographic about COVID-19.2
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), also a non-profit, started the “You Are Not Alone” campaign to support individuals and families affected by mental illness as well as to educate and fight the stigma surrounding mental health. The campaign invites people to share their experience and hopes to connect and remind people that they are not alone.3
Lastly, the CDC has also shared resources on how to cope with the stress and anxiety caused by the pandemic. Some of the tools include taking a break from COVID-19 content, taking care of your body (exercising, sleeping), making time for joyful activities, connecting with others, and reaching out for help.4 More information can be found on the webpage here.