Connection: Our Most Powerful Tool
By: Kalee Beal, Trauma Informed Care Specialist
One of the most common questions people ask me upon first meeting is, “What do you do for a living?” When I say I am a mental health professional, I am occasionally asked for some form of advice. I love this because it signals to me they view mental health professionals as safe people with reliable information, and de-stigmatizing the use of mental health services is something I am deeply passionate about.
No matter the concern or mental health issue my advice is always the same: seek support and build connections with others.
From TED Talks to research studies and documentaries, there is a consistent theme. Connection to other people is a powerful healing tool. Human connection leads to lower levels of anxiety, decreasing depression, overcoming addiction, and so much more. Connection is powerful. Connection is healing.
Connection with others has been the single most powerful source of joy in my life. When I have struggled or been overwhelmed, having loved ones to talk with was hugely supportive. And when I was dealing with things that my loved ones could not understand, I sought connection with a mental health professional.
No matter what you are going through in your life, you do not have to go through it alone.
Connection with others does not have to mean your friends or family. Connection and support come in many forms. It can mean connection with others in a support group, a coworker, a volunteer, or a mental health professional. Connection is something we can plan for and not something that we should expect to “just happen.”
As we enter a new year, people will begin reflecting on the changes and resolutions they want to make. Next year, let’s focus on improving mental health by making plans to build and maintain meaningful connections.
Creating a more connected world can only help us all!