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Your Mental Health Matters

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and The Family Institute at Northwestern University is proud to be part of this important national initiative. Mental health is a critical part of overall wellness, and we believe that everyone deserves access to high-quality mental health care and resources.

During Mental Health Awareness Month 2023, we are offering an array of educational resources, expert advice, and events designed to help individuals and families build resilience, manage stress, and strengthen their emotional well-being.

If you or someone you love is struggling with anxiety, depression, or other mental health issues, know that the Family Institute is here to help. Our compassionate team of mental health professionals are here to support you every step of the way.

Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you achieve your mental health goals.

Mental Health Tips from The Family Institute At Northwestern University Experts

Practice journaling. Ask yourself difficult questions and use the space to clarify your feelings, your path, your purpose.

Mudita Rastogi, Ph.D., LMFT
Department Chair, Marriage & Family Therapy Program

Having a positive and loving relationship with yourself is so important. It's the foundation upon which all other relationships are built. If loving relationships were not modeled by your parents in childhood, you must learn how to be a caring parent to yourself. It's not an easy task, but it can be done!

Stephanie Bowman, J.D., M.A.
Staff Therapist

If you're experiencing a difficult emotion or a particularly stressful situation, a dose of self-compassion may help. Think about what you might say to a friend or loved one (or even your beloved pet) if they were in a similar situation and then offer the same words to yourself.

Melissa Hill, M.S.W., LCSW

An hour of self-care a week can greatly increase our capacity to connect with those we care about, and enable ourselves to carryout our daily activities without burning out. Take the time to prioritize your own well-being so that you can be together with the people who matter to you without stress looming.

Mairin Wilkie, LCSW

Think small! Small changes that are maintained over time are impactful and more likely to stick.  Identify a very small behavior you want to change. For example, saying a pre-determined phrase, like "whoops, I will try again" to yourself when you make a mistake, or giving yourself 2 minutes to stretch before you start your work day. Don't go for too much, make sure the behavior is offered as a gift and not a punishment, and allow room for forgetting, change is bumpy. Offering yourself the gift of a small change builds confidence and self respect. 

Nancy Burgoyne, Ph.D.
Chief Clinical Officer

Take advantage of the nicer weather to get up and move. A little physical activity is better than no activity.

Daniel Wilsea, M.A., LCPC, NCC, CCMHC, CMPC
Therapist & Mental Performance Consultant

To decrease racing thoughts at bedtime, try to stay away from devices at least 30 minutes before bed. It's also important to give your thoughts time to "breathe" throughout the day, so they don't come popping in for the first time when you're trying to go to sleep.

Jocelyn McDonnell, M.A., LCPC, NCC
May Mental Health Events

May 24, 2023 12:00 PM CT

Circle of Knowledge Event

Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorder Webinar

Autism Spectrum Disorder can take on many forms, ranging in severity and symptoms often causing the disorder to be misunderstood. Join Renay Gartner, Psy.D., Director of  Assessment Services and Amy Wolok, Psy.D. to learn more about how Autism is diagnosed, how it might present, and what current research is saying about the disorder. 

This is a free event and registration is requested. 

Location: Virtual

Registration has concluded.

May 24, 2023 7:00 PM CT

Circle of Knowledge Event 

Black Mental Health Community Forum

Minority communities have be disproportionally affected by the negative impacts of COVID-19 and other unimaginable tragedies and events causing an increase in reports of stress, depression and anxiety. Join Tramaine Presley, Psy.D., LCPC, LMHC, Director of Child, Adolescent, & Family Services, Benjamin Rosen, Ph.D., and Karla Hargrove, M.A., LPC as they engage in a discussion with Bishop Horace E. Smith, M.D. on the importance of our mental and spiritual health to our overall well-being. 

This is a free event and registration is requested. 

Apostolic Faith Church
3823 S. Indiana Ave
Chicago, IL 60653

Registration has concluded.