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My Inabilities and the Spring Campaign

Wow what a week! It’s been a crazy one. My hubster (Unsuccessfully cool word..?) moved to Regina for RCMP training and my friend Jaclyn is moving in. 

Blaine left for Regina at 8:30am and by 7:00pm that evening my toilet had overflowed, the bathroom sink broke, I realized I don’t know when garbage day is, and I got chased by a lady with a bag full of bottles.

Although Blaine is normally the one to fix/do all of these things (minus the bag lady), I’m perfectly capable of doing it myself.  I’m also one of the most clumsy accident-prone people I know, so of course everything is a somewhat different experience than if Blaine did it.

So the toilet thing. We phoned Jaclyn’s boyfriend and had him bring us over a plunger – flowery and colourful. Yes, I do not own a plunger. In the 2 years I have lived with Blaine, we have never once needed a plunger. Shortly after, the sink plugs.  Drain-o – resolved in minutes.

Garbage day – still have no idea.

Bag lady….

I was coming out of my house, minding my own business when a lady without shoes and a bag full of bottles asked me where the bottle return is. My instincts were to find her a pair of shoes or sandals and point her in the right direction.  After I let her know where Sarcan is, she asks me for a ride.  Although I consider myself a nice enough person, I don’t let strangers in my car. I have watched way too much Criminal Minds to put myself in that position.  Once I politely say no, she turns into a raging scary person, running after me with her bag of bottles swearing and pounding on my car.  Let’s just say I got out of there FAST!  Not one of the best times in my life – but probably one of the more entertaining.

Anyhoo, today I’m hosting a picnic at work today to bring awareness to Partners for Mental Health’s spring campaign “Not Myself Today” in the workplace.  I repeat this a lot but for my new readers I am a Community Correspondent for Partners for Mental Health so I write once in awhile about their campaigns and about mental health in general.

I’ve talked about the campaign a bit before, but I’d like to talk about it a little bit more, as it is coming to an end.

Did you know….

-500,000 Canadians missed work today due to mental health

-3X greater chance of lost productivity for people living with depression

-Mental illness > heart disease as the fastest growing category of disability costs

-1 in 3 workplace disability claims are related to mental illness

-$51 billion annual economic cost of mental illness in Canada

-44% of workers say they have or have had mental health issues

-Only 23% would talk about their mental illness to their employer

These stats are shocking and disappointing.  The campaign aims to bring awareness to these stats so we can get people talking about mental illness and end the stigma around it.

Can you imagine living in a world where you could talk about your stress, anxiety, depression (etc…) at work, to your employer, to fellow employees, just as if you were to talk about a physical illness.  My hope is that one day this will be okay.  One day, these stats will change for the better.

I can say I have definitely missed work a few times due to mental health problems.  I’m a big believer in mental health days and that we should all take a few if we feel we need them.  What if employers provided an amount of mental health days per year, say 5, that employees could take as needed.  I am certain the amount of disability claims and sick days due to mental illness would decrease and the amount of productivity would increase.

This campaign aims to start conversation about mental illness in the workplace so that maybe, one day, these stats will become much less….well…just less.

Find out more at www.notmyselftoday.ca and get your workplace involved. 

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