Mental Health Research UK (www.mhruk.org) has a bright and cheerful new January campaign to raise awareness of depression and seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
The campaign is so easy to support – all you need to do is wear your brightest clothes to work on so called ‘Blue Monday’ (21 January 2013) and donate £2 by texting BLOO22 to 70070. And that £2 will make all the difference to all those affected by depression and SAD. Easy – now just find your brightest clothes!
We hope you’ll join us to raise funds for Mental Health Research UK – why not send us your photos for our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/EmergenceCIC
Mental Health Research UK is the first UK charity dedicated to funding research into the causes of and cures for mental illness.
No brainer for great PR for anyone involved in promoting greater understanding of mental health issues – and Rule #2 for Press Offices
With this year’s Blue Monday due on Monday January 16th this is a great opportunity for anyone with an interest in mental health issues to gain valuable media coverage and even fund-raising opportunities.
Here’s a great example from the Edinburgh Evening News on getting extensive coverage – linking the forthcoming Blue Monday with the issue of seasonal depression and the work of the Samaritans.
The reason why it is a great opportunity is that we are faced with a meme – a self-replicating idea where astute communicators can harness and ride to promote their particular story.
Blue Monday has entered the infosphere as the symbolic ‘most depressing day’. It is there whether you like it or not.
It provides an opportunity where the media can either come to you, or be more receptive to re-visiting your on-going story as it has a topicality with the arrival of the meme. (Imagine it is a bit like Haley’s Comet, arriving on the scene, generating immediate interest in what it is, represents and how it engages with people.)
Rule #1 for any Press Office should be to respond quickly and effectively to any media enquiries from journalists.
Rule #2 for any Press Office should be identify any topicality – events, anniversaries and memes – which you can peg your story onto to gain coverage, interest and engagement.
So, if you work in promoting better understanding of mental health issues get cracking – Blue Monday is only five days away!
Transform how you feel by following this 5 stage workout to make you feel happier – especially on Blue Monday.
The 5 Step ‘Binge Happiness Work Out’ consists of:
Step 1 – write down four things over the last week which make you feel grateful. Then write and recapture how you felt about one of the best experiences or thing to happen to you in your life.
Step 2 – write about something good you have done for someone else.
Step 3 – write a short email or letter to someone who you like or care for. Why not tell them how good they are and why they are important to you?
Step 4 – make a list of your favourite places you have visited, or places you would like to go. Really imagine you are there.
Step 5 – write about your future where everything has gone as well as you have hoped. Also, think about the present, and make a note of four things that went really well for you during the last week.
Writing down positive feelings has been proven to beat just talking about them: scientists believe that writing encourages the creation of a story line and structure which helps people to make sense of what has happened in their past and encourages them to work towards finding solutions.
Talking however, is often unstructured, disorganized, and even chaotic. As a result, it can add a sense of confusion to your emotional state.
Expressing gratitude, thinking about a perfect future, and affectionate writing have been scientifically proven to work, and all they require is a pen, piece of paper, and a few moments of your time.
In a psychological study by Laura King of Southern Methodist University it demonstrated the positive benefits of writing about their positive future. (L.A.King (2001) ‘The health benefits of writing about life goals’ Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (p798-807))
Have a go at the 5 Step Happiness Work Out – and share with us your experiences.