Be Mighty: Share Your Story
Sharing your story is one of the many ways that you can spread awareness about mental health issues, available resources and help encourage those who may be struggling to reach out for support. When people read and relate to your story, it can give them hope for a better future and realize they are not alone. Your voice is one of the most important tools you have, and using your voice for good is a meaningful way to make a difference in the lives of others.
We hope you find the guidance below to be helpful as you consider posting a blog via our partners at The Mighty.
All of us at The Jed Foundation (JED) are so grateful that you are spreading awareness through the power of storytelling.
Sharing your story – what to write about:
When people are struggling, it’s often helpful to read about others’ personal experiences related to self-care, help-seeking, and help-giving.
We encourage you to write in an inspiring and hopeful way about your experiences with mental health issues and how these experiences have affected you.
Feel free to share stories about yourself or your experience supporting a friend, a family member, or anyone to whom you feel connected.
It’s important to share your story in a way that is authentic, spreads hope, and inspires people to seek help.
Stories that focus on a specific moment in your mental health journey can be particularly effective—consider a moment that made you realize you needed to get help, the best advice you’ve heard about surviving a panic attack, etc. Additionally, going into a specific aspect of living with a condition is typically helpful. For example, instead of writing about your life with depression, tell us what it’s like getting up in the morning when you have depression. Tell us what it’s like being a student with anxiety. Tell us how mania affects you at work.
You have the power to change the way people think about their mental health through your words.
We hope you will consider sharing information about your connection to JED and/or your experiences with our resources/programs in your post (please find more information here).
- Review the tips and guidance below:
- Safe and effective Messaging
- Blog best practices
- Instructions for posting on The Mighty
- Thoughts and Questions
- Draft your blog, thoughts or questions
- Pending capacity, someone from JED’s team may be able to review your post and provide feedback – email email@example.com.
- Submit your post to the Mighty!
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org the link to your blog once it has been posted – please include a couple of sentences summarizing your blog as well as your social media handles
- Spread the word via email and social media! Be sure to tag @jedfoundation so we can retweet/post/share!
Best Practice Tips for Blogging
Your headline is often the first thing that people will see. Try to make it attention grabbing to hook someone into reading more about your story. Your introduction is another chance to hook the reader in. Try to keep your introduction short and simple to maintain your reader’s interest. The blogs that receive the most engagement are typically between 500 to 1,000 words. The format that we recommend depends on the type of post you’re writing. If you’re telling a story, it’s best to write in paragraph form. If you’re listing things, use numbered bullets and write in paragraph form under each bullet. It’s also important to space out your text and keep paragraph length consistent. Because your blog post isn’t a college essay, there’s no need to reiterate your points. However, a closing paragraph does wrap up your blog post and gives you a chance to provide encouragement and learnings to your reader.
Safe and Effective Messaging
When sharing messages about mental health issues and suicide, it’s important to do so in a safe and effective way. You want to make sure you are helping people rather than discouraging them, especially in times of vulnerability. Using images to depict your story can be a great way to add depth to your post. Effective images that could be used are ones with people as the subjects. When using imagery that depicts people with mental illnesses it’s important to avoid using photos where people look unhappy, alone, or unstable. It is recommended that you use images that depict a diverse range of people–people going about their lives, in groups and by themselves, and in settings that are relatable.
- Click here to learn more about safe and effective messaging and to review best practice guidelines and tips.
Instructions for Submitting a Story on The Mighty
Check out this link to get started: themighty.com/submit-a-story
Not every story will be published on The Mighty and it may take up to a month to hear back after a submission. It is important not to be discouraged if this happens to you. Every story is valuable and it does not mean that your story is not worthy of sharing!
Thoughts and Questions allow you to talk to the Mighty community about your experiences, and let the community support you. When you post, make sure to use hashtags (for example, #anxiety #suicide #MentalHealth) so even more of the community will see it. If you don’t use a hashtag, members who don’t follow you on The Mighty are less likely to see it. The word count is now up to 3,000.