Seven profound lessons we learned from Miss SA’s mental health talk

Seven profound lessons we learned from Miss SA’s mental health talk

Miss South Africa 2020, Shudufhadzo Musiḓa, has partnered with SADAG to tackle mental health issues. Here are some of the most important lessons to learn about mental health.

Mental health
Mental health/ iStock

The initiative aims to change the narrative around depression, trauma, and anxiety. 

“As I mentioned on the final night of Miss SA that I would like to start a mindful movement. One that aims to inform how we as society view mental health and de-stigmatising it.

“I’m so excited and proud to announce #MindfulMondays a series of conversations I will be having with experts on mental health and how to prioritise not only your own well-being but also those around us!, she wrote on Twitter. 

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The conversations kicked off on Monday, 8 February.

Shadu invited The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG) board member, Zamo Mbele, who is a Clinical Psychologist, as her first guest. 

The Psychologist tackled many issues, including defining what mental health is. 

“Mental health is the things that you do on a daily basis ongoing in order to improve your health,” he said. 

He added that mental health requires investment. It has to do with what you eat and how you spend your time. 

Below are more lessons we learned from the talk. 

READ: Expert advice on how to avoid feeling depressed during lockdown

- One in three people in South Africa is expected to suffer from mental health in their lifetime. 

- Mental health does not only affect a certain type of group of people. It affects everybody regardless of their age, gender, race, and culture. Mental illness can even affect children as young as two-years-old. 

- High functioning depression is common among young professionals. People who suffer from it are not severely depressed -  they still go to work and do social activities, however, they find it difficult to perform, wake up in the morning, and find it difficult to concentrate. They also feel no amount of sleep gives them enough rest. 

- The biggest indicator that one is suffering from mental health issues is often seen in a change of behaviour and not finding pleasure in things you used to do. 

- It is easy to get misdiagnosed, but to avoid that, it is important to do research about the professional who will be helping you and to also get a second opinion to avoid taking the wrong medication. 

- Self-diagnosing can be very dangerous., especially if you start labelling yourself incorrectly and it contributes to stigma. It also impacts your ability to get proper help.

- To better manage your mental health, it is important to speak the right things and celebrate small victories. 

To seek help, visit

Image courtesy of iStock/ @syahrir maulana

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