There are plenty of “fun” holidays, like National Best Friends Day and Popcorn Day, but I think it would be beneficial to the mental health community if there was a national holiday for them.
The purpose of this holiday, We’re In This Together Day, would be to spread positivity and to let others know that they are loved, appreciated, and not alone in their struggles. Some things people could do on this day: write uplifting letters or say words of encouragement to people who have shown inner strength in their lives.
I feel this would help people with mental illnesses like myself. Sometimes we need reassurance and it’s nice to know that others care about us. People who have anxiety often worry about what others think of them. Therefore, I think it would be great for people to tell others how proud they are of them. I know when I get a compliment or get support it makes me feel better. For example, at Piedmont, my former Residential Assistant wrote all of her residents letters of encouragement at the end of the semesters. It made me feel good knowing that she cared about me, especially since my mental health wasn’t great at the time.
I think this would also help the individual who is writing, giving letters, and spreading words of encouragement. Personally, when I take time out of my day to make someone else feel better, it benefits me because I realize that I can have a positive impact on people.
On We’re In This Together Day, people would share their stories and struggles with others to let them know they aren’t alone. Several people have shared their stories with me regarding struggles they’ve gone through and overcome. Not only is this inspiring, but it gives people hope. When we share our struggles with others, people who are struggling may realize that they aren’t alone and that things can get better. By sharing our struggles with others, people who have mental illnesses might also be able to accept themselves more and realize that it’s okay to open up about how they are feeling. Once people with mental illnesses open up about their struggles, they are then able to get help. In turn, their mental health has a much better chance of improving.
Another great thing that could happen on We’re in This Together Day is for people to write positive things on their social media in commemoration of this holiday. Positive posts would be another asset to people, especially those who have mental illnesses.
I think it would also be great if people invited others who may be struggling with their mental health to spend time with them and their friends on this holiday. I know that different people cope in different ways; some people want to be left alone when they are struggling, some don’t. For me, hanging out with other people has improved my mental health. When I hang out with my friends and with positive people in general, it makes me feel happy, partly because it distracts me from my own struggles.
At the end of the day, everyone wants to know that they belong and are cared for. National We’re in This Together Day would help so many people by spreading positivity and letting them know that they have support.