This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and the Mental Health Foundation is encouraging people to look at mental health from a new angle. In the UK, mental health has been getting the royal treatment, with their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry speaking out; so we thought it only right that seafarers get a bit of attention too!
Seafarers are known to be more likely to suffer from mental health problems than their shore-based colleagues. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise to anyone as the demands of modern shipping mean longer periods away from home with little shore leave.
So, this Mental Health Awareness week we want to challenge seafarers to take this five step challenge to better mental health:
1. Communicate and be more open. If you are struggling, let someone know!
2. Healthy body, healthy mind – try to take at least 15 minutes of exercise a day e.g. circuits.
3. Take some time to yourself – take some time for yourself each day to wind down.
4. Focus on the positive – be thankful for at least one thing everyday
5. Avoid social isolation; connect with your fellow crewmembers! Speak to someone you haven’t necessarily got to know yet and learn a new fact about them.
Further information and resources:
- Crew Medical’s Mental Health resources
- The Human Rights at Sea post-traumatic stress leaflet
- The Sailors’ Society Wellness at Sea programme