SUICIDE PREVENTION AWARENESS – PLAY YOUR PART

Each year, during September, organisations around the world come together to raise awareness about suicide prevention. The stats on suicide are shocking. In 2020 alone, 12.2 million adults in the US seriously thought about suicide, with 3.2 million making a plan to commit suicide and 1.2 million actually attempting that plan. According to the CDC, for every suicide death there are 4 hospitalizations for suicide attempts, 8 emergency department visits relating to suicide, and as many as 27 self-reported suicide attempts. Males are 4 times more likely to commit suicide than females and almost 25% of high school students that identified as lesbian, gay or bisexual reported attempting suicide in the prior 12-month period.

Now, more than ever, it is important for everyone – people, organisations and leaders – to talk about suicide prevention. Recent studies have shown that reaching out to someone you are concerned about decreases the likelihood of them committing suicide. What are the signs to look out for? What can you do to improve your mental health and general outlook?

In this newsletter, we will use research to answer some of these questions.

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Looking out for loved ones, friends, and colleagues.

Whilst there are some groups that experience a higher rate of suicide, all demographics are affected. The majority of people that have risk factors for suicide will not attempt suicide, and it is therefore quite difficult to tell who will act on suicidal thoughts. According to the National Institute for Mental Health (NIMH), the main risk factors for suicide are:

  • A history of suicide attempts
  • Depression, other mental disorders, or substance use disorder
  • Chronic pain
  • Family history of a mental disorder or substance use
  • Family history of suicide
  • Exposure to family violence, including physical or sexual abuse
  • Presence of guns or other firearms in the home
  • Having recently been released from prison or jail
  • Exposure, either directly or indirectly, to others’ suicidal behavior, such as that of family members, peers, or celebrities

 

 

Stressful life events (such as losing a loved one, legal or financial trouble) and social stressors (such as shame, harassment, bullying, discrimination, or relationship trouble) may contribute to suicide risk, especially when compounded with other known factors.
Although risk factors are an important consideration, there are known warning signs that indicate a person may be at higher risk and require immediate attention. These include:

  • Displaying extreme mood swings, suddenly changing from very sad to very calm or happy
  • Making a plan or looking for ways to kill themselves, such as searching for lethal methods online, stockpiling pills, or buying a gun
  • Talking about feeling great guilt or shame
  • Using alcohol or drugs more often
  • Acting anxious or agitated
  • Changing eating or sleeping habits
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge

 

 

Studies have shown that directly asking people about suicidal thoughts and behaviors can be the best way to identify someone at risk for suicide, increasing the probability of being able to help that person or point them in the direction of someone better placed to provide much needed support.

 

Something to be aware of in your own world.

Having just partially exited a global pandemic that impacted most of our lives in ways we couldn’t have conceived of just a couple years ago, now is the time to consider your own mental health. Over the next year, Legendary Life will be putting out other newsletters and blogs to provide research-backed methods for improving mental health, including journalingaffirmation practices and other tried and tested strategies. If you haven’t already done so, be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss any content. Improving your mental health and outlook is a fast track for living a better more contented life, increasing the probability of achieving success (whatever success means to you), whilst laying the foundations that will one day reap the rewards of stronger, healthier relationships with loved ones, friends, and colleagues.

The Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu famously said, 
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”. At Legendary Life, our plan is to inspire that first step.

With that in mind, did you know that phone use is a key factor in mental health decline. A recent study by Ariel University, Israel, showed that excessive smartphone use is associated with difficulties in cognitive-emotion regulation, impulsivity, impaired cognitive function, addiction to social networking, shyness and low self-esteem. Medical problems include sleep problems, reduced physical fitness, unhealthy eating habits, pain and migraines, reduced cognitive control and changes in the brain’s gray matter volume. For the full study, click here.

Are you addicted to your phone and social media? You certainly shouldn’t feel bad if you are. Tech companies invest billions each year to hold your attention and keep you zombie scrolling. Unfortunately, the algorithms that drive social media tap into a natural biological response to threat meaning you are more likely to focus on and prioritise thinking about events that could cause you harm, even when in reality they are highly unlikely to do so. This model has fuelled news media for decades, leading to an ever-present bias to promote negative events over positive ones, and even to catastrophize stories that when analysed logically and with access to the often-concealed data could simply be labelled as ‘not that bad’ or perhaps not even newsworthy. The toll this has on your mental health has in recent years been the subject of many studies.

Reducing dependency on your phone/social media, being more intentional about how you use your phone, and preventing, where possible, your phone from using you, vastly increases the probability of improved mental health. We know this; the data is established at this point. So, why is it so hard to put you phone down?

Be positive and do it! #LLNoPhoneChallenge

Despite the merits of doing so, it is undoubtedly hard to ‘disconnect’ from social media and phone time. That’s why we implore you to join the Legendary Life No Phone Challenge for mental health awareness. Our community of like-minded people are putting our phones down together and being more intentional about how we interact with the digital world. The #LLNoPhoneChallenge can only be completed by those that commit to it, but the rewards are worth the effort. Legendary Life have provided all the tools and information necessary to complete the challenge, available here on our website, completely free of charge. Those that undertake the challenge vastly increase the probability of putting their phone down and improving their mental health.

Somewhat counterintuitively, ‘disconnecting’ from the digital world, is actually one of the best ways to ‘connect’ with the real world, and it is through ‘real world’ connections that we tap into the ancestral habits that have provided comfort, community and spiritual connectivity with each other, our world and even our galaxy, through the stars in the night’s sky, since the first humans.

Specifically, to complete the challenge you must do all the following for 66-days consistently and without pause:

  • Turn your phone off 4 times each day: 1) During sleep, 2) The first hour of your day, 3) The last hour of your day, and 4) For 1 ‘flex’ hour that can be at any time that suits you.
  • Create and execute on positive, healthy, and personalized morning and evening routines, each day.
  • Journal: Do any kind of journaling you wish whether it be free form journaling or guided journaling using prompts.
  • Practice gratitude: Start and end your day with gratitude. Write down at least one (but it can be more than one!) thing that you are grateful for.
  • Complete a daily act of service: This can be as simple as bringing a little trash bag on your daily walk in your neighborhood park and picking up some trash along the way on the trail. It can be checking in and having a quick chat with an elderly neighbor or giving some leftover food, toiletries, or old clothing to one of the homeless in your neighborhood.
  • Daily reconnection: Each day, reach out and make contact with at least one person per day from your past or someone you haven’t touched base with in a while. The goal here is to simply check in on them, catch up and say that you were thinking of them and hoping they were well. No business agenda allowed.
  • No & Low socials: The idea here is to use your socials intentionally and not to give in to the subconscious programming that has been done to you that makes you want to pick up your phone and mindlessly scroll your feeds like a zombie every time you are bored, distracted, uncomfortable, etc.
  • No arguing with or criticizing anyone online. At all.
  • No corporate news. At all.

 

There is a lot of fantastic information on our website that explains the rules and benefits in greater detail. Head over there now, join our community and feel inspired. CLICK HERE.

Give yourself the best chance of completing the Legendary Life No Phone Challenge by downloading the Legendary Life Phone App, featuring the ‘No Phone Challenge’ module. GOOGLE PLAY or APP STORE

LIVE YOUR LEGEND

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Keep up on the every day happenings of Legendary Life by following us on social media. We are sharing helpful articles, tips, and YOUR personal stories.

#LiveYourLegend Weekly Challenge

Leave your phone in another room for at least 50% of your waking day. Do it for 3 days in a row and see how it impacts your real-world interactions, work and relaxation time.

Final Thoughts

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”

Lao Tzu

#LLNoPhoneChallenge

With the support of our community and the free tools and information available here, join the Legendary Life No Phone Challenge. Remove the dependency you have on your mobile and re-connect with yourself, your loved ones and the world around you.

NOPHONECHALLENGE - TAKING PART

Build your Legend with the rest of the community.