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Small Business Owners And Mental Health Challenges

mental health

Earlier this month Studio Candor hosted the MORE LOVE Market at their shop space (which we moved into at the beginning of May). Why the MORE LOVE market? Because the month of May is for Mental Health Awareness (and more love)!

Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in May in the United States since 1949. In South Africa, the month of October has been declared Mental Health Awareness Month. Nevertheless, the more we can encourage people to talk about mental health the more we can normalise conversations, change the way people think and act about mental health, help people recover from mental illness and improve relationships.

On this last day of May, I noticed the latest The Big Issue Magazine is the Mental Health and Wellness Edition. I got a copy, which I’ll read properly after getting this blog post published, but one of the first things that caught my eye when I was flipping through it for some last bit of inspiration for this blog post, is that “Recent statistics (SADAG 2021) cite that one in three South Africans have or will experience a mental health condition, yet there are very few professional resources available (one psychologist per 100 000, one psychiatrist per 300 000) and only 5% of the entire Health Budget has been allocated for mental health.” The article goes on to say, “This means we need to assume responsibility for our mental well-being as far as possible, and it begins with awareness – of our own state of body and mind, as well as those around us. There is no need to diagnose or treat, merely to act as an early warning system. Prevention is always preferable than cure.”

Therapy is expensive, but perhaps finding a blogger who helps people identify mental problems is the first step for some? (I’ve also shared some free resources and tips in this blog post that may help someone who is struggling.) We know that social media use can be harmful to mental health and well-being, but it can also be used to positively promote mental health awareness. There are some top mental health influencers that make discussions about therapy, anxiety and depression everyday conversations and make people feel seen and understood. My personal favourites are Dr Brené Brown (Researcher), Matthias James Barker (Psychotherapist) and Sanam Naran known as @the.conscious.psychologist.   

Some other self-help material that I’ve been enjoying recently is the Make Your Damn Bed Podcast. I love that this morning motivation podcast is only 3 ish minutes of real-talk. I’ve just finished Sarah Knight’s bestseller Get Your Sh*t Together and can highly recommend this to anyone struggling with work-life balance, procrastination and anxiety.

Hosting a community event or activity promoting mental health awareness is also a great option and it’s great how Studio Candor created space for communities to gather this month. The MORE LOVE market was a wonderful day of supporting local, small businesses, spreading love, doing good and living sustainably.

The Caya Creative Studios  team was there too and did a live podcast  with the owners of Studio Candor as well as myself and Kawthar from KAWRHU.   

In this episode we chatted about sustainability in business, mental health, how business owners have dealt with the Covid crisis, manufacturing, community working together and more. I opened up and shared some of my scariest thoughts and revealed the truth of my deeper secrets of my challenges of being an entrepreneur. If you’re interested in art, sustainability, or the small business journey, this is the episode for you.

Thank you for reading my thoughts. If you have any advice to share, let me know in the comments and let’s spread kindness because everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.

Love and virtual hugs,
Janneke

 

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