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Saturday, September 10, 2016

Suicide Prevention - 3 simple things anyone can do

Suicide Prevention day… no wait Suicide Prevention every day

Today I have had a little time to see all the information about suicide prevention that is flooding social media for World Suicide Prevention Day. It is great as I seen some information about suicide prevention month as well as suicide prevention week.  It warms my heart to see so much information going out, and then I began to ponder how great it would be to not only have a day, a week, and a month dedicated to suicide prevention, but I think it is time we declaring a Suicide Prevention Year.
Imagine all that we could accomplish if we had society that focused on suicide prevention every day for one year.  I can’t take credit for the idea; I got the idea from a blog I read earlier “Suicide prevention must be year round”

I know that suicide prevention is something I do every day. I know when I struggled at my darkest moments, I felt all alone.  But I was never really alone, in my darkest depression, I felt like no one else could ever feel this way or have mental health problems. In 1993, I don’t remember anyone talking about suicide prevention, and admitting to having mental health problems; it just didn’t happen.

Three simple things we can do to help make suicide prevention an everyday thing

1.  Be aware – look around, do you see people hurting, do you notice behaviors of others that are 
     different than usual.  Is there someone who appears to be in distress, overwhelmed or sad?
2.  Education – get training in mental health and suicide prevention. Then educate others, encourage 
     them to get trained.   When you hear someone saying things that make it sound like mental illness 
     or suicidal thoughts make someone less than a person --- educate them.
3.  Act – because awareness and education mean nothing if we don’t do anything about it.   The truly 
    amazing thing is anyone can help and it is the simple things that make a difference such as; “I’m 
    concerned about you, are you ok”, “I can see your hurting, what can I do”, “are you having 
    thoughts of suicide”.   If someone is suicidal and you aren’t able to help, or you get unsure of what 
    to say, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline number yourself, while you are with 
    them and start the conversation.   In case it isn’t already programmed in your phone please do that 
    now 1-800-273-8255.   Acting can also be about getting involved in great organizations like The    

Awareness + education + action = saved lives

Maybe you are someone who has never been affected by suicide, you can still help.   If you want to get a better understanding of what someone may be feeling who has had thoughts of suicide in the past, but also to understand the hope that can come, I encourage you to go to  Craig Miller’s website and review two of his videos:  what if and This is How it Feels

My Pledge for suicide prevention every day

I will make every day about suicide prevention by being aware of the people I am around whether it is one of my clients, my friends, my family, and strangers.  I will be aware. 

I will continue to educate myself about suicide prevention and interventions.   I will continue to work to educate others who need the knowledge.  I will work to educate those that are struggling, that life can get better.

I will take action, when I see someone who may need help.  I will continue to be involved with the AFSP, I will continue to participate in SPSM where I constantly learn new and cutting edge information about suicide prevention.

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