Mental Health Awareness Week, 10th – 16th May 2021
It’s Mental Health Awareness Week and the theme this year is nature! Experiencing a bereavement can be something that really shakes our world and impacts on our mental and emotional wellbeing, as well as other parts of us. You may have spent more time outside over the last year, as we haven’t been able to go inside to see people very much. You might notice that being in nature does something positive for you. You might notice it in your children too. Families we work with often have a favourite place they go to when they want to remember or mark a special occasion for the person who died, being outside can make it feel like our feelings have a little more space.
There are lots of things that can be helpful for children and young people, and their adults too! Our team work with children and young people to bring playful and creative strategies into the therapeutic work we do, we may mainly meet indoors but that doesn’t mean we can’t use nature as a way to connect with grief and feelings.
A memory tree is a lovely way to bring the natural world inside, children can write memories on leaves and place them on branches. Young people, children and adults can use their imaginations to go to place in their minds that feels nurturing and caring, often that is somewhere in nature, such as a beach or a forest. When they draw or paint this, it can become even more tangible for them.
We know that nature can give us wonderful metaphors to describe feelings and difficulties, giving language to what might be tricky to talk about. If you have any favourite ways to be in nature or any particularly important spots then please do share with us.