January is a month annually marked as a Blue Month – a month that can bring a strange conflicting pressure on people.
On one hand – it brings happiness and a looking forward to the future and on the other the adverse weather, debt levels, failing in New Year resolutions, low motivational levels and feelings of a need to take action again can onset blue feelings.
The phrase the “January Blues” is not solely about depression but can be about the wider impact of many things on a person’s life that escalate over what is a very emotional period for some i.e. Christmas and the start of the New Year.
Causeway Rural and Urban Network is encouraging communities to have a compassionate ethos in the recognition that some people will be experiencing loneliness, hopelessness, helplessness and also depression and may need a little extra support to keep well and are encouraging communities to adopt the Public Health Agency’s ‘Take 5 steps to wellbeing’ - 5 simple daily steps to help maintain and improve well-being; (1) Connect - with others and spend time developing supportive connections; (2) Be Active – discover an enjoyable physical activity that suits your level of mobility and fitness (3) Keep Learning - try something new, a skill, a hobby, a course, something fun as well as confidence boosting. (4) Take Notice - pause and take a moment to look for the beautiful, positive things in everyday life and think about how they make you feel. (5) Give - do something nice, thank someone, smile, or consider volunteering or joining a group.
Causeway Rural and Urban Network is committed to increasing community’s involvement in suicide prevention and mental health promotion with our Suicide Prevention Development Officer facilitating an OCN L2 Take 5 Ways to Wellbeing course in January for community representatives to encourage practical ways for well-being to be built into our community.
If you or someone you know is in distress or despair please contact appropriate services; your GP, or Dalriada Urgent Care out of hours service on 028 25663500 and LIFELINE Freephone 24/7 helpline - 0808 808 8000.
It is also advisable to access other support services for self-harm support, bereavement, bereavement by suicide for both children and adults and specific young men’s support - these services are available and accessible locally.
Please contact your local Suicide Prevention Development Officer if you would like more information on the Take 5 Steps to Well Being or on any of the support services on T: 028 21772100