January 5, 2021
COVID-19 caused not only an acute medical crisis but what some are calling a “mental health pandemic.”
Our CEO, Jill Wiedemann-West, along with 29 other successful business leaders, shares in Authority Magazine how the simple power of daily gratitude can help improve our mental wellness in 2021. Read the complete article.
Here’s an excerpt from Wiedemann-West’s conversation on this topic:
Even under ordinary circumstances — if there is such a thing — I’m fond of saying, “we all have mental health.” We all have ups and downs, many need extra support from time to time, and some need ongoing help managing these conditions. Now, remaining resilient amid the stress, anxiety, and worry of COVID-19 can be as challenging as adjusting and accepting our “new normal.”
Gratitude can be an important tool in staying resilient. And I like to think of “gratitude” and “hope” as two sides of the same coin: Finding aspects to be grateful for in the past and present — yes, even when everything seems challenging and uncertain — can give us hope for the future and the good things that are yet to come.
Gratitude and hope are crucial components of mental health. In fact, People Incorporated Mental Health Services awarded its first-ever Hero for Hope award at our 50th-anniversary gala last fall, mere months before the world around us began to change. I had the honor of presenting this award, which Zak Williams, a mental health advocate, accepted on behalf of his late father, Robin Williams. In my remarks, I said the following about hope:
If you’ve ever struggled with your own mental health, supported a loved one with mental illness, or worked in the mental health field, you know that hope is a must. Hope is celebrating the ups, just as much as struggling with the downs. Hope is finding or creating those small moments of joy. Hope is celebrating the wonderful gifts and talents that so often emerge from those who are struggling the most. Hope is recognizing that mental health is part of who we are, but it does not define who we are.
These words take on a new meaning for me today, as we look back on 2020 and look ahead to several more months of uncertainty. I challenge myself and those around me to look hard for what we can be grateful for — and hopeful about — in a year like no other. When we asked People Incorporated’s leadership team what they were grateful for, the answers had one thing in common: we’re grateful for our team, who have stepped up to serve in amazing ways. That gratitude shapes us today as we navigate through this unusual year, and informs the year ahead.