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There is an urgent need to talk publicly about the relationship between social injustice and our mental health. We need to redefine what it actually means to be mentally healthy, not just on an individual level, but on collective, communal, and global levels. Involvement in activism can make people especially prone to highs and lows. The booklet begins with a chapter that asks, “What is Radical Mental Health?” followed by chapters that explicitly connect the pharmaceutical industry and psychiatric establishment with the larger message of Occupy. It discusses the importance of self-care, mutual aid, and coping skills in times of stress and includes material about first aid for emotional trauma, navigating crisis, and healing from and preventing sexual assault. This material can be used to help facilitate teach-ins, skill-shares, and peer-support groups to help sustain movements over the long term.
Mindful Occupation aims to address the need for attention to mental health, healing, and emotional first aid within Occupy and other movement groups. Some suggestions in this booklet are about making sustainable encampments, many of which have been temporarily destroyed by the police and government. Other suggestions are applicable for any and all activist groups working on making social change. Still other suggestions are general helpful ideas for taking care of ourselves and others as we live our lives.
For more related resources, visit Mindful Occupation online: mindfuloccupation.org
By the Mindful Occupation collaborative authoring group. 2012. Paperback. 84 pgs. 5.5″ x 4.25″.