Kathleen M. Pike, PhD

Why Five on Friday

In our family, we have a tradition of dinner together at home on Friday evenings. Personally, it gives me a chance to pause and pivot, to reflect and imagine after a busy week. What kind of week has it been? What does the weekend have in store?

As Director of the Global Mental Health Program, I am excited to introduce a new blog, designed to ask you, our readers, to join me in weaving mental health into your reflections and imaginings. Five on Friday brings into relief the many different ways that mental health issues are woven through our daily lives: from losing a loved one, to reading a great book, and much in between. I hope you will find these posts thought provoking and meaningful, and I look forward to your feedback along the way.

1. The Global Mental Health Program’s mission is to be a leader in research, education, advocacy and capacity building. Five on Friday will allow us to spread the message about our work and raise awareness about the many topics within global mental health that connect community members, students, researchers and those in need.

2. This series will help break down a global topic that often seems too big and too complex to comprehend. These postings will allow for bite-sized learning and help us understand that global is also local.

3. Mental ill health is the leading cause of disability around the world and stigma leads to isolation and silence precisely when we need each other most. This blog is about connecting, communicating and breaking the silence around mental illness.

4. Mental Health is the strongest predictor of happiness and well being. Mental health is not just the absence of illness. We are learning more every day and around the world about what you can put into everyday practice that will make a difference in how you feel day in and day out.

5. I am hoping that going into the weekend with Five on Friday on your mind will inspire you to have a conversation or speak up about mental health. We need more leaders, advocates, educators and ambassadors in global mental health. Please join us!

Kathleen M. Pike, PhD

Kathleen M. Pike, PhD

Kathleen M. Pike, PhD is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Global Mental Health WHO Collaborating Centre at Columbia University.

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