Anyone can put up a slide deck full of statistics, but what truly resonates and makes an impact on individuals, organizations, and systems is often a very well-told personal story. Stories, not stats, motivate change.
I don’t write these words -- acceptance, forgiveness, compassion -- as if they are tiny words, like ‘it’ or ‘to.’ They are enormous words, like ‘and’ or ‘but.’ In them lies tremendous potential, so much unknown.
It's become more common to question the good of technology we use every day. Are we glued to our devices to the detriment of our real-life relationships? Does our scrolling through Facebook help us feel more connected, or feel worse about our own lives?
Depression and mental illness have become frequently-talked-about topics, by famous and “regular” people alike. Now, more people are telling their stories in different and creative ways, including artists focusing on sharing experiences of mental illness through their art.
The promise of research and programs that value prevention is that they could encourage a shift in the field to more prevention-oriented and comprehensive approaches for a range of mental health challenges.
I believe in the power of awareness months to draw needed attention and funds to causes I care about. But, I also care about what happens the rest of the year. So, on the cusp on a new month, I want to think about how to move from awareness to prevention, and the power of a moment to move change forward.
At this moment, as it seems like the world is coming together around depression and suicide prevention, my wish is that we are incredibly, undeniably, successful in these pursuits. What more do we have to lose?
Written from both personal and professional perspectives, Promoting Hope, Preventing Suicide explores suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention. Often using current events as starting points, this blog poses questions about what could be done better or differently, what contributions research can make to practice, and challenges and opportunities inherent in new technologies. This blog is a forum for new looks at old ideas and encourages challenging dogma.