There are so many people suffering from mental health challenges today that don’t even realize it, and they are suffering alone. Unfortunately, in many families and cultures, the idea of acknowledging a mental health concern or even seeking counseling is still taboo. Many have been taught to “suck it up” or never let them see you sweat.” People have been told, “you’re strong enough to handle it.” Sometimes people are even told that they just need to pray more. Therefore the people and places that are supposed to be safe for us are actually encouraging us to stay hidden in the darkness and silence.

The reality is that we all experience loss, disappointment, heartaches, profound sadness, anxiety and fear at some point in our lives. These feelings might be the result of losing a loved one to death, losing a job, losing a relationship or a house. Sometimes an important goal is not reached, a business fails, there is an unexpected illness, or a traumatic car accident happens.

Sometimes we are born with chemical imbalances, and due to the unattended losses or traumatic events in our lives, we have a hard time coping and bouncing back.

I desire that all people would have a healthy safe place to get the help that they need. I want them to have a place where they can unload and share. I want them to learn and grow as they come into a place of wholeness.

We all need those safe places. It can help us to be better moms, dads, husbands, wives, sons, daughters, friends, co-workers, bosses and neighbors. Just being all-around mentally healthy individuals encourages healthy families and healthy communities. Come find out more about becoming mentally healthier at the Mental Health Awareness Night May 18th, 2018 at 7 pm at AWAKE Coffee Community.

Nicole Johns, LCSW

Mental Health Awareness is important because it allows us to reflect on our life: our marriage, our children, and our relationships.

Rhonda Wilson, LMFT

Mental Health is one of the most misunderstood forms of health. To this day, many people lack a true understanding of what mental health entails and why it’s essential. The stigma of mental health has kept many people from seeking the help they need and deserve. People suffer silently because they refuse to get the ugly label of “crazy.”

What many people don’t understand is that Mental Health is health too. You can’t say you are taking care of yourself if your mental health is not included. Total health is incomplete without it. Many times, other forms of health can be heavily influenced by one’s psychological state.

It’s time for us to lay down the stigma and pick up our wellness. It’s time to educate and motivate about one of the most important forms of health. No longer will we let people miss out on one of the best feelings in the world, mental wellness. Join us as we discuss mental health, it’s importance and ways to maintain it.

Latitia Woods, MA, LPC, NCC