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How To Sell Mental Health Awareness To A Skeptic

There are skeptics in every aspect of life. For some reason, however, the mental health world seems to have a boatload of skeptics that love to try and prove that mental health is a farce. “What do we need mental health education for when mental illnesses aren’t real?” they ask. This not only contributes to stigma, but undermines the mental health revolution that so many are working so hard for.

Skeptics are ill-informed. They don’t have the facts. As a mental health advocate, you must be firmly informative when attempting to sell them mental health awareness. If the skeptic does not believe there is a need for mental health education and advocacy, ask them why. They most likely will not have a good answer for you. To start, try explaining that mental health is just as important as physical health. Keeping your brain healthy is just as important as keeping your body in shape — your brain and body must work together. If your brain is mentally unhealthy, your body will follow in that direction as well.

When it comes to stigma, skeptics wonder why some people fight so hard for something that they think does not exist. They write people off as “crazy” or “psycho” when, in reality, they are dealing with an illness that is just as real as any physical illness, like cancer or diabetes. You can explain to the skeptic that they most likely would not tell a cancer patient to stop chemotherapy and think happy thoughts, or tell a person dealing with their diabetes to forgo their insulin and try a bit harder. If you wouldn’t say these things to someone dealing with a physical illness, why would you say it to someone dealing with a mental illness.   

Lastly, just informing a skeptic of what a mental illness really looks like could make all the difference. They probably have a preconceived notion of what depression or anxiety looks like — and, it’s probably incorrect. Informative explanations can help the skeptic sympathize with someone. It makes the illness “real” in the skeptic’s eyes.

If you have a mental health skeptic in your life, send them our way. They can check out our website and learn a little bit more about mental illnesses and substance abuse. We also have testimonials from real people who have benefited from our programs. We turn skeptics into believers.