Mental Health

Download Topic Description
For the Day of Conversation - Mental Health Mental Health Overview, links to resources and conversation guide for the day of your conversation.
Invitation Sample Invitation Sample

Related Blogs:
* Can We Talk About Mental Illness?

Most people agree that we want to reduce the stigma around mental health issues so that individuals and families are more inclined to seek help. Significant differences have emerged in how to best support individuals facing mental health challenges. Many people look to traditional western medicine - drugs and talk therapy- for the primary answers to mental health problems. There is growing interest in exploring a wider variety of ways to support people facing mental health challenges.  The value of mediation, exercise and other practices that change our chemistry and behaviors are show great promise as we learn more and more about the plasticity of our brains. What does it mean to ‘get better’ from a mental health problems - and is it even possible?  In this conversation, open a space for people to share their own experiences and explore different perspectives on this important topic.  

Rounds/Questions: The Living Room Conversation Starts Here
A Living Room Conversation flows through 5 rounds of questions and the closing. During some rounds, each question will be addressed. In other rounds, the multiple questions are intended as conversation starters and you need only respond to the one or two that matter the most to you. In the event the conversation wanders off track, we will refer to this Conversation Guide to get it back on track.

Round One: Getting Started / Why Are We Here?
● What interested you or drew you to this conversation?

Round Two: Core Values
Answer one or more of the following:
● What sense of purpose / mission / duty guides you in your life?
● What would your best friend say about who you are and what makes you “tick”?
● What are your hopes and concerns for your community and/or the country now and long-term?

Round Three: What does mental health mean to each of us? What does it mean for our community?
We have prepared this guide to support the National Dialogue on Mental Health and its Creating Community Solutions (CCS) initiative, to encourage Americans to talk about mental health. We're drawing on several of the CCS resources (available on the CCS site's Resources page) - the SAMHSA Discussion Guide and Information Brief.
Please answer both of the following additional questions
● What experiences in your life, your work or your family inform your thinking about mental health?
● Is mental health an important issue in your community, and if so, why?
Please answer one of the following additional questions
● In your experience, how are mental health issues affecting young people? (If you are a young person, how do mental health issues affect you and your peers?) [page 10 of the Information Brief discusses mental health and youth]
● Do you think your religion or culture, or some other aspect of your identity or background, influences how you think about mental health? If so, how?

Round Four: Reflection
Answer one or more of the following questions:
● In one sentence, share what was most meaningful / valuable to you in the experience of this Living Room Conversation.
● What learning, new understanding or common ground was found on this topic?
● Has this conversation changed your perception of anyone in this group, including yourself?

Round Five: Accomplishment and Next Steps
Answer both of the following questions:
● What is one important thing you thought was accomplished here?
● Is there a next step you would like to take based upon the conversation you just had?

Closing – Thank you! Please complete the feedback form (attached) to help improve Living Room Conversations.