Anxiety – Are You Anxiety Aware?

Posted on 14th May 2014 by

Anxiety is one of the leading causes of mental ill health. As part of Mental Health Awareness Week 2014, let’s talk about that.

Since 2000, the Mental Health Foundation (MHF) has been raising awareness and generating discussion about issues relating to mental health. They have campaigned around a variety of themes so far over a week each May, including loneliness and physical activity. Now it’s time for 2014’s theme – anxiety. Here’s our insight into the topic.

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Anxiety is “one of the leading causes of mental ill-health in the world” according to MHF, and there are many reasons why somebody could feel anxious. The nature of the work we do at Impetus means we encounter anxiety in different situations and groups of people, for example in many of our ASpire service users. ASpire provides support to adults with Asperger syndrome and high-functioning autism through mentoring and support groups. These help to improve people’s lives by boosting confidence, helping them to explore any goals they may have and helping them to work towards achieving those goals. These goals are often around becoming more confident in social situations and improving social skills.

An ASpire service user may feel anxious due to challenges they face as a result of their Asperger’s or autism. These can build up over time and be harmful without the right support, especially alongside the stresses of everyday life. Our dedicated range of trained volunteer mentors meet with service users to give them support, guidance and understanding. Through this we ensure that the person in need is empowered to overcome these challenges.

An important part of recovering from anxiety is feeling in control of your life, so a mentor doesn’t do things for their service user or tell them what to do, they work together instead. ASpire mentoring support has benefited many individuals, for example, by helping them to identify triggers for anxiety and coping strategies. Mentors can also help individuals to get involved in social activities and events and over time this helps people start to feel more confident in being around others. By helping people to deal with anxiety, ASpire mentors encourage individuals to try new things, get involved, and enjoy their lives.

For more information about anxiety MHF suggest Anxiety UK. We think Mind also provide great resources. To find out more about Mental Health Awareness Week, you can visit the Mental Health Foundation’s website.

Do you have Asperger’s or autism and want our support (through a mentor and/or attending support groups)? Get in contact with our ASpire service. If you’re interested in becoming a mentor, see our volunteering page.

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