It’s Mental Health Week in Canada, and this year, the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is encouraging us to get real with our emotions. But how do we do that? Here are three practical steps you can help your child take and practice yourself as well:
- Name it. Being able to identify and name our feelings is a significant step in the right direction. Research shows that understanding and naming our emotions can impact positive thinking and promote mental health flourishment.
- Express it. Children and youth look to caring adults in their life as examples to follow. Help your child learn how to express their feelings and emotions in healthy and productive ways. This will set them up for success while fostering good relationships and decision-making skills.
- Deal with it. It can be tempting to avoid or try to numb feelings we don’t like. This week is all about acknowledging emotions and encouraging ourselves to name and express how we’re feeling instead of pretending they’re not there.
Mental health resources for parents
- How to support your child’s mental health during COVID-19 (School Mental Health Ontario)
- Four skills that build an optimistic mindset (School Mental Health Ontario)
- Six stress management and coping strategies for students (School Mental Health Ontario)
Crisis support, counselling and referral services for children & youth
- 24/7 crisis line and crisis chat for Ottawa children and youth (Youth Services)
- 24/7 counselling and referral services for children and youth (Kids Help Phone)
- Free phone & video counselling (Counselling connect)