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  • Writer's pictureNatasha J. Thomas, MD

May is Mental Health Month...and I'm Back!

Hello, Hope Grove Family. It's been a long time. 2020 was a year that required a lot. For me, it took a lot of focus to not become overwhelmed, a lot of work to mentally and emotionally support the community, and a lot of adjusting and growing with my family. So, I decided to take a blogging break and do a little more self care, reflection, and quiet things like gardening and writing.

How have you been?

But now, spring has emerged and so has a collective deep breath, even as we still face some of the ongoing COVID-19 challenges, and racial/political strife. May is Mental Health Awareness Month and I hope you're taking inventory of your emotional and mental well-being in the midst of all the stress we have, and continue, to face.

In the past year, the country has faced higher levels of anxiety than we have collectively in decades. With that has come depression, substance misuse, and loss of motivation. And what, exactly, can be said of all the social isolation and its impact? That's why this year, for May's awareness month focused specifically on our mental well-being, I want to encourage everyone to take even two or three minutes to honestly check in on their mental landscape. Can it stand a little clearing, or enhancing, or support, or love?

Here's a look back at a few helpful Hope Grove blogposts that you may want to revisit. Just click on the links:

Take these Ten Steps to Tackle Negative Thinking

5 Tips to Cope with Social Anxiety This Summer

The Importance of Developing a Vocabulary of "Feeling" Words

The Purposeful Selfie: How Video Diaries Can Promote Your Mental Health

Quick Mental Wellness Tip: The Listening Meditation

The Anxiety and Panic Series: What is Anxiety?

Dr. Thomas' Favorite Self-Help Books

And here are a few always helpful mental health resources:

The National Alliance on Mental Illness

The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance

Spark of Life Grief Resources and Retreat

Psychology Today

Dr. Tracey Marks Mental Health YouTube Channel

And if you are the parent of a rising college freshman, please take a look at today's post on emotional readiness!

Take inventory and take care. We'll be talking soon!

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