A few words on taking a bit of downtime, as well as a list of hopefully useful resources as well.

Hello and a very warm welcome to the spot on the site where we chat about mental health and wellbeing. About the bits and bobs in life that go to make it just that little bit more taxing.

We run this every week, and the gravity of what we tend to chat about varies significantly from article to article. Some things feel tiny, some things feel massive, but we’d strongly argue that all of them matter. We keep coming back to similar conclusions too, no matter what we’re discussing. The need for self-care. Trying to reach out and communicate with people. Finding some way to take in a gulp of fresh air somewhere.

This column won’t be here next week though, for a reason that ties into what we want to talk about here. Bottom line: we’re taking a short break, we’re building a bit of space into life and a chance to just go and do something different for a few days. We’re really proud of what we do with Film Stories, but also, it’s human beings who run the site, the magazine, the podcast, and other assorted bit and bobs. And it’s pretty exhausting at times, as things are for many.

Sometimes, and this has been a lesson very hard learned, it’s just worth stopping. For a few days, for a week. Whatever you can get. To do something different, or even just to relax and do nothing for a little bit. It’s one of the things that’s at the heart of self-care, to find a bit of time to genuinely switch off. To unlink work emails from a phone, to stop checking in from afar, to simply take a step back for a bit.

It’s all a bit idealistic of course, particular in current times and current circumstances. Most people’s definition of just what normal is has irrevocably changed over the last year or two, and that makes downtime a little harder to make feel just a little different. But it’s surely worth a try.

Human beings are both robust and frail things. The human body needs proper self-care each and every day, and the human mind does too. And whilst that may all read a bit posh and pretentious, sometimes it’s just important to take a break. It’s what we’re doing here for a few days so that we practice what we sort of preach.

In the absence of this column next week, we want to leave you with our relatively regularly posted collection of support groups and helplines that may or may not be of assistance and use. Remember, you’re wasting nobody’s time if you need to use one of these, and the people on the other end are human beings as happy to talk to you at the start of your tether as at the end.

Stay safe everybody, and thanks as always for reading.

Support is available from the following organisations:

In an emergency, life threatening situation only, call 999 immediately. 24hrs a day every day.

https://www.nhs.uk/…/urgent-and…/when-to-call-999/

For urgent but none emergency medical attention call 111 (or 0845 46 47 in certain areas of Wales.) 24hrs a day every day.

https://www.nhs.uk/…/urgent-and-emergency-care/nhs-111/

For your local crisis team contact 111 at any time of day and ask for their details. Crisis teams are available to offer support in times of a mental health crisis. This number works in England, Wales (also call 0845 46 47) and Scotland.

https://www.nhs.uk/…/urgent-and-emergency-care/nhs-111/

S.O.S – Silence Of Suicide

Phone lines are open 9am until midnight 7 days a week (including every day over Christmas and New Year) Volunteers are waiting to listen to your worries so please don’t suffer in silence. If you are over 18 then call;

0300 1020 505

www.sossilenceofsuicide.org

[email protected]

PAPYRUS

Young suicide prevention society for under 35’s

Phone: HOPElineUK 0800 068 4141 – (Mon to Fri, 10am to 5pm & 7 to 10pm. Weekends and bank holidays, 2pm to 5pm)

Website: www.papyrus-uk.org

Child Line for any issues at all for under 16s

0800 1111

https://www.childline.org.uk

Samaritans

Phone UK and ROI 24hrs a day, 365 days a year

116 123

Text 07725 909090

Email [email protected]

Welsh language line 7pm to 11pm 7 days a week

08001640123

https://www.samaritans.org

No Panic

10am to 10pm then pre recorded crisis help after this time

0844 9674848 5p per min

Youth 13 – 20

0300 7729844

https://www.nopanic.org.uk

British Red Cross

0344 871 1111 Mon – Fri 8.30am – 5.30pm

Borrow a wheelchair / disability aid line

0300 456 1914 Mon – Fri 9am to 5pm

https://www.redcross.org.uk

Mind Mental Health charity info line

0300 123 3393 Mon – Fri 9am to 6pm (closed 25th 26th Dec and 1st Jan and all bank holidays)

Text 86463

https://www.mind.org.uk

Re-Think Mental Health

0300 5000 927 10am to 2pm Mon – Fri

Email [email protected]

https://www.rethink.org

The Mix 13 to 25 year olds

0808 808 4994

Their crisis messenger text service provides free, 24/7 crisis support across the UK. If you’re aged 25 or under, and are experiencing any painful emotion or are in crisis, you can text MIX to 85258.

https://www.themix.org.uk

Anxiety UK

Charity providing support if you’ve been diagnosed with an anxiety condition.

Phone: 03444 775 774 (Mon to Fri, 9.30am to 5.30pm)

Website: www.anxietyuk.org.uk

CALM

CALM is the Campaign Against Living Miserably, for men aged 15 to 35.

Phone: 0800 58 58 58 (daily, 5pm to midnight)

Website: www.thecalmzone.net

Men’s Health Forum

24/7 stress support for men by text, chat and email.

Website: www.menshealthforum.org.uk

Mencap

Charity working with people with a learning disability, their families and carers.

Phone: 0808 808 1111 (Mon to Fri, 9am to 5pm)

Website: www.mencap.org.uk

Beat – for people battling eating disorders.

Phone: 0808 801 0677 (adults) 12pm – 8pm Mon to Fri and Weekends 4pm – 8pm or 0808 801 0711 (for under-18s)

Website: www.b-eat.co.uk

Cruse Bereavement Care

Phone: 0808 808 1677 (Mon to Fri, 9am to 5pm)

Website: www.cruse.org.uk

Refuge

Advice on dealing with domestic violence.

Phone: 0808 2000 247 (24-hour helpline)

Website: www.refuge.org.uk

ManKind

Helping men escape domestic abuse.

Phone: 01823 334244

https://www.mankind.org.uk

Safeline

For people affected by or at risk of sexual abuse or rape.

Phone: 01926 402 498

https://www.safeline.org.uk

Switchboard LGBT+ helpline

Advice and understanding for LGBTQ+

Phone: 0300 330 0630

https://switchboard.lgbt

Email: [email protected]

Financial difficulties and debt:

The websites below offer information on where to get benefits advice and financial support.

https://www.turn2us.org.uk

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/

https://www.gov.uk/browse/benefits

https://www.entitledto.co.uk

https://www.nationaldebtline.org

https://www.stepchange.org

https://capuk.org

Take care, all.

Th

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