for better mental health

I need help now

If you're struggling to get through this moment or don't know where to turn, these resources and tools are for you. We designed them with people who have been through times of crisis, who told us what helped them find a way through.  

What to do in a mental health emergency

  • If you're feeling like you might attempt suicide, or you have seriously harmed yourself, it is an emergency. Please call 999 for an ambulance. The NHS still wants you to do this during the coronavirus outbreak. Mental health emergencies are serious. You are not wasting anyone's time.
  • If you need to talk, there are people ready to listen. You can call Samaritans any time for free on 116 123. Shout also offers a free 24/7 crisis text service. Text SHOUT to 85258. You don't have to be suicidal to use these services – they are for anyone who's struggling. 
  • Our pages on crisis planning and other helplines and listening services list many more options for keeping yourself safe.

Help to feel calmer and more in control

If you're feeling overwhelmed or out of control right now, these options might help. These are the sort of tools a crisis team might use to help you accept, address and reduce your symptoms in the short term.

Making a plan for the next few hours
Checklist

If you are finding it difficult to focus or are unsure how to manage your day, writing down what you'll do next might help you feel more in control of the situation.

Try our step by step tool for getting through the next few hours.

Coping with scary or intrusive thoughts
Storm

You might be having thoughts that are frightening or alarming you. They could be about suicide, harming yourself, harming others, or hearing voices.

We've put together a few ways that help people cope with scary or intrusive thoughts.

Relaxing and calming exercises
Bamboo

If you are feeling anxious or scared there are many things you can do to help yourself cope.

Here are some simple exercises you can try that might calm you down. 

Writing down your thoughts and feelings
Book

If you're confused, overwhelmed, or don't know where to start, it might help to write something down.

This is a safe space where you can reflect on what you're feeling.

Ways to distract yourself for a while

If your thoughts and feelings are very intense, it can help to try to shift your attention onto something else. These are some options for letting yourself take a break from your thoughts for a while.

Practical activities
Mitt

Sometimes it helps to immerse yourself in a creative or practical activity.

Look at what others have suggested, and remind yourself of what you enjoy doing.

Websites and apps
Websites and apps

We asked people from our community what the most distracting and fun bits of the internet are.

Take a look at their suggestions.

Games and puzzles
Controller

Games are often about problem solving. It might help to focus on solving something unrelated to what you are going through right now.

Here are some suggestions from our community.

Find professional support

If you decide that you do need to ask for help, this is where you can find some options on where to go, as well as suggestions on how to search for services that might be more specific to you.

Find a therapist or counsellor

Talking therapy can give you a safe time and place to talk to someone who won't judge you. It does work well for many people.

Depending on your situation, there are lots of ways to get therapy.

See our page on how to find a therapist.

Find the words to open up

It's not easy to explain what's going on in your head. And it can be especially hard when you’re feeling in crisis. But it's usually the first step towards getting longer-term treatment and support.

See our page on what to say to your doctor at your appointment.

See how others have got through this

While nobody will know exactly how you feel right now, you are never alone in this experience. It might help to see how other people have put their difficult experiences into words. But remember: if you see something online that upsets you, navigate away from it, read something else or try a different activity.

Personal stories shared with Mind

Our website is a great place to find out about how people deal with mental health problems. People often blog for us about their experiences of services, and how they are managing now.

We've picked a few blogs you might like to read here.

Personal stories from our online community

Elefriends is an anonymous network where people can share experiences, support each other and be themselves. We asked some of the members to tell us their story, and included some snippets from supportive conversations.

Find out more and visit here.

Personal stories from around the web

The internet is full of stories from people all around the world including documentaries, vlogs and blogs.

Here's a selection to help you find out new coping tips, learn about what you're going through and feel more connected.

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