Today is Time to Talk Day and new figures reveal the impact of social media on conversation. A survey of over 5,000 UK adults, commissioned by mental health anti-stigma campaign Time to Change, highlights the need for us to make better use of the connective power of social media.
- Over half (51%) of us say we do not need to talk to friends ‘in real life’ because we are kept up to date via social media.
- The average person has 770 friends on social media, yet nearly a fifth (18%) of us say we wouldn’t feel able to call upon any of those friends if we were struggling with our mental health.
- 70% of people mention that group chats and social media lead to more ‘surface level’ conversation, such as sending funny videos, banter, and gossip.
Time to Change is urging everyone to use today as an opportunity to actually engage with friends and family in a real and meaningful way – by having a conversation about mental health. The campaign says conversations have the power to change lives whether that is speaking face to face, via the phone, or on social media.
Today people are hosting their own Time to Talk Day activities, from ‘run and chat’ hosted by England Athletics, ‘bat and chat’ by Table Tennis England, and ‘laughing yoga’ in London. Nearly 4,000 more workplaces and thousands of schools and community groups will be taking part.
Award-winning beatboxer and musician SK Shlomo is supporting Time to Talk Day. He is open about his experiences, particularly in reference to the support he received from those around him, which he says saved his life.
SK Shlomo says, “When I found myself in a suicidal episode, the daily messages I was receiving from friends and strangers around the world to check in with me ultimately pulled me back from the edge.” he continues, “I believe that we all could work together to create a more meaningful online culture, where we support each other through both the good and hard times. Time to Talk Day is a great chance to make change, by practising sharing our truths. If just one of us reaches out, and invites our friends to do the same, who knows, it might help someone else speak their truth tomorrow, and ultimately, change a life.”
As part of the day’s activities celebrity supporter and music artist Frankie Bridge is hosting a brunch event at an exclusive London venue, where she will meet her followers to talk about mental health. Frankie has shared her own experiences of anxiety and depression on her social media accounts and decided to host the brunch to spend some quality time with her followers and encourage them to also be open about their mental health.
Frankie Bridge comments on why she wanted to support Time to Talk Day, “I love social media but it’s easy to only share the ‘fun parts’ when there’s often a lot more going on behind the scenes. Last year I decided to be really honest with my followers and talk candidly about struggling with depression on Instagram. The support I received and the messages people sent meant the world. For Time to Talk Day I want to be there for my followers so I’m inviting them to come and meet me for an honest conversation about mental health – where we can all open up and talk about how we really are.”
Read about SK Shlomo’s new remix single ‘Look Away’ (Precept Remix).
Find out more about Time To Change.