Let’s face it, this past year has been tough. It has been a challenging year both personally and professionally, however one thing that has become prominent is the importance of mental health.
At Road Coffee, we are passionate about the well-being of our staff, clients, customers, the broader community and the coffee farmers around the world. It is through that passion for mental health that we compiled these useful tips, words of motivation and encouragement from mental health advocates and professionals in the Saskatoon area.
We hope that you can pull some positivity from this piece and remember, you are not alone!
Danielle McFadyen, M.C.
Danielle has been working in the human service field with a wide range of clientele over the past seven years. She has experience working with individuals and families of all different ages and especially enjoys working with adolescents. She has supported individuals who have experienced various stresses and mental health issues including; family violence, depression, anxiety, abuse, grief and loss, addiction, and parenting.
“Tips for maintaining mental health:
Don’t underestimate the importance of the basics; eating, sleeping and exercise.
Being well-rested allows us to think more logically and rationally. Feeding our brain regularly helps it to function to the best of its abilities (no one wants to be hangry!). Exercise is nature’s antidepressant and one of the best methods of stress relief.”
Mental Health Advocate
Heidi Fischer is a mental health advocate located in Saskatoon. She experiences depression, anxiety, and the impacts of trauma. She is a public speaker, writer, lived experience advisor, artist, and more!
“You are not the only one. By its very nature, mental illness plays tricks on the mind, and a favourite script goes something like this: “You are the only person on the planet with this issue, so keep this quiet”.
Mental illness thrives in silence, so do the opposite. The more you talk about what you’re going through the more you will learn that others experience the same things. Not only do they experience it, but they have ideas and solutions, and are living well. This can be an amazing way to regain hope and find healing.”
Faith is the Executive Director for the CMHA Saskatoon Branch, having previously served as the Executive Director for Inclusion BC. She has held numerous executive director positions across Western Canada.
“Here are some great tips for anyone experiencing employee anxiety about COVID-19:
Elizabeth Smith, BA, BSW, RSW
Director of Clinical Services
Clinical Counsellor | Registered Social Worker
Elizabeth began counselling in 2006 in Alberta, before moving back to Saskatchewan to work in private practice in Saskatoon and Melfort in 2008, after completing her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Bachelor of Social Work, in 2001 and 2003 respectively. She joined Aspire Too in 2014 and became a partner, continuing to work with clients and taking on managerial responsibilities. Her primary areas of practice include adult mental health and relationship counselling.
“My advice to anyone struggling with their mental health is, first of all, to reach out for some support. Talk to a trusted friend, family member, doctor, crisis line, counsellor, or workplace human resources. You may experience some immediate relief when you share your experience and ask for help, reaffirming that you are not alone and that there are people and services who can support you through hard times.
Secondly, keep it simple. The journey to mental health, or recovery from mental illness, can be daunting. But when we focus on the simple things first (regular sleep, nutrition, water intake, physical activity, positive social contact), we can then develop the capacity to build our resilience. If these things seem overwhelming, that’s okay; book an appointment with your family doctor, or attend a walk-in clinic, to discuss. Do some research on counsellors or therapists in your area that are accessible to you; there are many options available in the community, from no cost to low cost, to the workplace or insurance covered services. Find a counsellor whom you trust (you may need to try a few before you find the right fit, that’s okay!), and start the process. Mental health and wellness is something we all deserve.”
We hope that this article has provided you with positive words of encouragement and tips for maintaining positive mental health. It is vital that we are all taking care of ourselves, now and in the future.
Author Jordan Calladine