Centerstone receives $360,000 grant for COVID-19 behavioral health services

John G. Markley

Sometimes the things that we know will benefit us most are the hardest things to make ourselves do. Taking an important first step can be extremely difficult and even terrifying, depending on what it is. But deep down, we know that it will lead us down a beautiful path of hope and healing.

When you know what will help you most, it’s time to dare yourself to do it. While you may feel anxiety leading up to that important first step, remember that the other side will be better. Here are some ways you can dare yourself to improve your mental health.

  • Dare to open up to someone. If you struggle with your mental health, caring support is one of the best resources you have. While it may be scary, opening up about your struggles to someone you trust can establish that extra support and strengthen your relationship.
  • Dare to slow down. In our busy, perpetually connected culture, it can feel like there is never a time to slow down without missing out on something. Turn off the news. Close the spreadsheet. Set aside quiet time to exist within your own mind, not worrying about being connected or “useful.”
  • Dare to self-care. You deserve to feel at peace and fulfilled. Take the time to do things that replenish your soul. Ask yourself if you have any passions or hobbies you have not pursued for a long time, and invest time into them again. Do what’s best for you.
  • Dare to help others. While focusing on your needs will help you, sometimes the best form of self-care is helping others. Meet a need for a friend or neighbor, or volunteer with a community organization. It can strengthen your relationships and make you feel a deeper sense of fulfillment.
  • Dare to forgive. If you are holding onto old resentment and having trouble forgiving someone, you are probably doing more damage to yourself than you are to them. Instead of continuing to live with a grudge, let go of the burden and forgive them. You can even still establish boundaries between the two of you, but offering forgiveness can help you find more peace.
  • Dare to seek professional help. When mental health challenges are taking over your day-to-day life, it might be time to seek help from a mental health professional. They are dedicated to helping you fight your mental battles. Be a part of fighting the stigma by taking this step.

If you are struggling with mental health challenges, Centerstone is here to help. Call us at 1-877-HOPE123 (877-467-3123) or visit to get connected with care.

John Markley serves as regional CEO in Illinois, serving residents in eastern and southern Illinois through more than 30 locations that provide treatment, support and educational programs and services to individuals who have mental health and addiction disorders and specialized services for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Centerstone employs over 525 staff in Illinois and serves more than 17,000 individuals annually.

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