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#BeBodyKind – Supporting Mental Health Awareness Week at Cygnet Hospital Woking

#BeBodyKind Board

The service users at Cygnet Hospital Woking, supported by the psychology department, created #BeBodyKind boards to raise awareness in line with this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week theme – ‘Body Image: How we think and feel about our bodies’.

The sessions took place on the wards and in the recovery corridor, encouraging service users and staff to think about body image and being body kind. The mental health foundation released a body image report that highlighted the impact that our thoughts and feelings about our body image can have on our mental health.

#BeBodyKind - Mental Health Foundation Statistics

Discussions took place about these statistics and the thoughts that they may have about our bodies. Service users shared their personal experiences of changes in their bodies due to medication and having to work harder to lose the weight and feel good about their bodies. They also spoke about the negative comments people may make that can make them feel self-conscious. Sadly many struggled to identify things about their bodies that they liked – but were equally supportive and complimentary of one another.

After watching a video of a powerful spoken word poem performed by Priscila Hernandez for Mental Health Awareness Week 2019 named “You’re more than a reflection” and discussing how it resonated with them, they created their own #BeBodyKind boards. Service users and staff wrote positive statements about their own body image and positive affirmations that others can read and help them feel better about their body image.

#BeBodyKind Board

The psychology department provided some printed statements from the internet such as “A smile is the most beautiful curve on a woman’s body” and “your worth is not measured by the size of your waist”, which were also added to the #BeBodyKind boards.

“It was great to see so many service users and staff getting involved, thinking about and discussing their bodies positively and sharing uplifting messages.”Paréce Bell, Assistant Psychologist

The #BeBodyKind boards will be up in the recovery corridor and on the wards at Cygnet Hospital Woking very soon.

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