People of Ireland asked to share their ‘soundest’ stories for Mental Health Awareness Week

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This year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is celebrating the theme of kindness.

In response, mental health charity A Lust for Life will share online tools and resources and call for people’s best ‘kindness in lockdown’ stories using the hashtags #KindnessMatters and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek, as well as the A Lust for Life hashtag #SoundEffect.

Charity co-founder, Chair and acting CEO of A Lust for Life, Paula McLoughlin said:

“It’s a tough time for so many of us at the moment, and we believe that it’s more important than ever to focus on the power of being “sound” to ourselves and others. We’ve been so humbled and warmed by the gorgeous stories spilling out online of small kindnesses across the country. They not only remind us of the need to have faith in a common humanity but also to continue to highlight the positive impact we know being kind to ourselves and others has on our mental health. I am delighted that A Lust for Life are contributing to Mental Health Awareness Week this year by showcasing these simple acts of soundness. As a nation we pretty much own the word ‘sound’ – and we do it so well.”

“We are also sharing a huge range of resources, tools and expert guidance online – and are now reaching in the region of 1.5 million people a month across our website and social media channels. We hope these resources will continue to support and empower people during these times.”

A Lust for Life’s ‘sound effect’ campaign continues to share stories of kindness on social media, demonstrating that soundness is alive and well on our beautiful island, even in these extraordinary times. This week it will include:

o “Acts of Soundness” – a call out for people to send us in videos of a time during lockdown that someone did something sound for them.

o “Share your sound” – We will have posts scheduled on social media all week asking people to suggest how they can be sound to themselves and tools for self-care and self-compassion.

To coincide with the week, A Lust for Life will launch a Spotify account with playlists to help people find some time for relaxation, to decompress, and to learn more about the theme of kindness and compassion. As well as music to assist with winding down, and the ‘feel good’ factor, there will also be curated lists of podcasts on kindness, mindfulness and meditation.

At 9pm on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, we will have live broadcasts on Facebook as follows:

o Monday 18 May: Brian Pennie on improving your self-talk

o Wednesday 20 May: An interactive session with clinical psychologist, Dr Malie Coyle

o Thursday 21 May: An interactive session with clinical psychologist, Dr Eddie Murphy

These sessions are weekly and have been ongoing since the introduction of the COVID-19 lock down.

A Lust for Life have also recently launched, in partnership with therapyhub.ie, an online Psychological First Aid (PFA) service to support people who are experiencing stress or overwhelm.

The website and the A Lust for Life social media platforms also are a hub of practical tools, online courses, articles on meditation and kindness; as well as expert advice on saying safe and mentally well during COVID-19.

The week runs this year from May 18th until May 24th.