Produced in association with HM Government

Wednesday 19th April 2023 07:32 EDT

There are times when everyone feels low or stressed out. Taking care of our mental health is as important as taking care of our physical wellbeing. Adding positive habits to our daily lives can help build our mental resilience.

If we realise that we are beginning to feel depressed, anxious or agitated, or that we are starting to lose interest in activities that we normally enjoy, we should tackle it like we would in the case of a physical illness. We should not only take care of our mental health when it is in poor condition but instead we should do so on a regular basis.

There is absolutely no shame in seeking help, and there is a range of resources and services available online to help us look after our mental wellbeing or access support for mild to moderate mental health difficulties, such as stress, anxiety or trouble sleeping.


Every Mind Matters

Is an NHS-approved website full of free resources to help you look after your mental wellbeing. Use the website to find practical tips on easing anxiety and stress, boosting your mood, sleeping better, and feeling more in control. You will also find cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques for tackling worries, unhelpful thoughts and working through problems in new ways. Sign up to the email programme for expert advice to include in your daily routine.

Search ‘Every Mind Matters’ or see nhs.uk/every-mind-matters


NHS Talking Therapies

If you are struggling with anxiety and/or depression, NHS Talking Therapies (the new name for IAPT) are here for you.

The psychological therapies offered by these services are practical and can help with a range of common mental health disorders, including depression, anxiety, phobias, panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, body dysmorphia and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Some of these psychological therapies can be accessed online, via text or through an interactive website.

Some services will also have therapists who speak the language of local minority groups and/or have access to interpreters and non-English resources.

To find your local NHS Talking Therapies service and self-refer go to nhs. uk/talk. To be eligible, you need to be registered with a GP; but you can self-refer without the need to visit your GP.


Hub of Hope

No matter what you are going through, you should not have to face it alone. Hub of Hope, run by the charity Chasing the Stigma enables you to find out what’s available locally and nationally to help you tackle a range of mental health concerns and disorders, including anxiety, depression, trauma or PTSD and their causes, such as financial concerns, loneliness, gambling or substance misuse.

Visit www.hubofhope.co.uk or download the free app


Samaritans and Shout

Samaritans Self-Help allows you to explore relaxation techniques, record your mood daily, look for patterns in how you’re feeling and store hopeful images. Visit selfhelp.samaritans.org for more information.

Shout’s website provides resources and tips on coping with feeling anxious, low, stressed or overwhelmed.

Visit giveusashout.org

Running helped with my anxiety

 26-year-old hotel receptionist Aditya suffered as a teenager after his mother fell ill, and he felt helpless in his attempts to support her. But one of the most effective tools for him to tackle his depression turned out to be a pair of running shoes!

“When I was around 16, my mother became ill and it took a toll on my mental health, and I became depressed. But not long afterwards I met my partner, and we got to know each other and fell in love”, he said.

“Last year I came to the UK to get married, and I love it here. I’ve been treated very well and have felt much better since my arrival. I first started running at university – I didn’t have much money, but I could run – all I needed was a pair of shoes. It helped manage my anxieties, so I’d go out running four or five kilometres twice a week.

“One day I saw a big group running in Victoria Park near me wearing RunTalkRun t-shirts, so I joined. On my first run in September, I met Chloe, who’s an awesome leader. It was great to be with somebody and know somebody in a new country. The first time I ran with Chloe, I was happy. I got to know somebody, and we talked about what was affecting us mentally, not just ‘how are you?’ I was able to discuss things with her and her with me.

“It makes a huge difference to talk to someone, no matter what you talk about. If you have ten things on your mind, even if you manage to talk about two of them, it’s better than nothing.”

He further added, “I now know five of the runners well, and we’re connected on social media. I run five days a week – even though I’m feeling better, I’m not taking things for granted. Every time I run with them, I feel perked up and welcomed. It’s brilliant!”

The Free NHS App

The free NHS App is a simple and secure way to access health advice and a range of NHS services, including mental health services. Available to anyone aged 13 and over who is registered with an NHS GP in England and Isle of Man. Download it from the App Store or Google Play.

You can also use it to:

  • Order repeat prescriptions.
  • View your health information.
  • Find NHS services near you.


Help in a crisis
  • If you or someone you know are having thoughts of suicide, are harming yourself or have thought about self-harm, tell someone.
  • If you cannot wait to see a doctor and feel unable to cope or keep yourself safe, contact the NHS for immediate support. Find your local 24/7 NHS crisis line on nhs.uk/ urgentmentalhealth or visit 111.nhs.uk.
  • Under-35s can also visit papyrus-uk. org or call 0800 068 4141 for help.
  • If your life or someone else’s life is at risk, call 999.

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