For the third week of Mental Health month, Balanced You is focusing on the topic “connecting with others.” Social connection helps ward off social isolation and is an important part of mental health. The connections we make with other people enrich our lives and support us through the most difficult times. But, sometimes, it is not easy to know how to make those meaningful, enriching connections, especially during the pandemic.
During the pandemic, you may not be as ambitious about connecting with others as you were pre-pandemic, and that is okay. Still, there are small steps you can take to help maintain connection during this time, using both technology and other resources.
Tools and tips for connecting with others
Some ideas to create meaningful connection include giving a compliment to someone, setting aside time to be social virtually, starting a buddy check-in system at work, making a loved one’s favorite recipe, or writing a letter.
To better understand how to connect with others, we encourage you to look at the Connecting with Others tool. The tool, developed by Mental Health America, offers helpful facts and tips and provides different examples on how to start conversations with others to help you develop meaningful connections.
Check out the Connecting with Others tool here. For more ideas on how to support your wellbeing by connecting with others during the pandemic, take a look at this blog post from King County EAP.
Additional mental health resources
Balanced You has resources King County employees can access to support your mental health. Many of these resources have updated their offerings to include COVID-19 related content.
- Counseling via telehealth: Regence and Kaiser therapists and other healthcare providers, including doctors and physical therapists, can be accessed from your home, via telehealth. If you have a provider, ask them if telehealth is available. If you do not have a certain type of provider and would like one, contact your insurance company.
- Making Life Easier and Employee Assistance Program: Making Life Easier (MLE) provides many free counseling and referrals, credit and legal consultations, mortgage assistance, childcare resources and referrals, and other daily living supports. The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides free counseling to help King County employees navigate workplace stress.
- Better Choices, Better Health: Better Choices, Better Health is a six-week, online, small-group based workshop designed to improve the lives of people living with long-term health conditions, including anxiety and depression. This program is free for King County employees and dependents.
- Mindfulness: A mindfulness practice can help you reduce stress at work and at home. Free classes and videos are available to King County employees. The classes are live, interactive, and available online during the pandemic. The videos range from two to 14 minutes and are available on-demand.
- Mental Health Resource Guide: View this guide for additional King County and community-based mental health support resources.
For questions, more information, or suggestions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.