Emotional & Mental Health

a person sits with their arms hugging their knees

Some common mental health difficulties:

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Mood Disorders

  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Anxiety:

Anxiety is more than nervousness. Anxiety can have the following characteristics:

  • frequent or constant worry 

  • increased heart rate

  • difficulty sleeping restlessness or agitation

  • unexplained medical symptoms or somatic complaints tension

  • sudden feeling of danger 

  • seeking to escape or avoid

  • rapid breathing 

  • difficulty concentrating

a person standing in a crowd with their hands on their face, the rest of the picture is blurry
a person with their hand on their head, looking upset

Depression:

Depression is consistent, regular periods of time where people experience:

  • persistent negative mood

  • diminished interest in nearly all activities

  • weight loss or weight gain

  • difficulty sleeping; or sleeping too much, too often

  • agitation

  • difficulty concentrating or focusing

  • suicidal thoughts or feelings

Trauma:

Trauma is an experience or experiences that can have adverse and lasting effects on a person's mental, physical, social, and emotional health and functioning. It can include things like:

  • experiencing violence, abuse, or neglect

  • witnessing violence in the home or community

  • having a family member attempt to die or die

  • substance misuse

  • mental health problems

  • instability due to parental separation or household members being in jail or prison

someone with their hands over their mouth and nose, looking worried

Resources for Pastors, Ministers, & Volunteers

Supporting a Mental Health Concern-Tips

How do you respond to someone who is expressing feelings of depression or anxiety?

 Having a conversation in ministry with someone who feels anxious or depressed can be difficult to navigate. The following tip sheet has phrases staff, clergy or volunteers can use to support someone in the moment. 

How do you know if a person is showing signs of difficulties with mental health or exhibiting serious signs of distress?

When working or volunteering in ministry, unexpected, yet emotionally-charged situations can occur. How do you differentiate between whether a situation is concerning or escalating to a much more intense crisis in need of immediate action? This chart helps identify whether someone is experiencing a concerning mental health issue or is in mental health crisis.

Mental Health Crisis or Concern

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