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05th Dec 2019

Mental health charity CALM launches Twitter campaign to relieve pressures of Christmas

Kyle Picknell

The festive period isn’t as carefree for everyone

Mental health charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) has launched #YuleSlog, a Twitter campaign encouraging conversation around the particular mental health pressures of Christmas.

Whether it’s your packed social calendar, financial pressures, loneliness or that simple, recurrent awkwardness of pretending to be surprised by the shower gel and deodorant set that particular uncle gets you every year, CALM is hoping to show that Christmas is not always ‘the most wonderful time of the year’ for everyone and people are not alone in feeling like this.

New stats released by Twitter reveal 49% of users said they felt pressured to have fun during the festive period, leading to enhanced feelings of anxiousness. Nearly half of those Twitter users polled – 41% – also experience feelings of loneliness during the Christmas period. This pressure is often made worse by the avalanche of social media posts over Christmas of apparently idyllic Christmas events, parties, dinners and get-togethers.

Using the hashtag #YuleSlog, celebrities including Made In Chelsea’s Louise Thompson, Line of Duty’s Vicky McClure, former professional footballer and boxer Leon McKenzie and Love Island’s Montana Brown detailed their real experiences of Christmas, demonstrating that it doesn’t need to be perfect and often isn’t.

Simon Gunning, chief executive at CALM, said: “Spreading a message of reality and positivity can be empowering for those struggling through this period and with this partnership we aim to celebrate the power of connection and communication, something we see through our free and anonymous helpline and webchat, which are open from 5 pm until midnight every day across Christmas.”

Katy Minshall, head of UK Government, Public Policy and Philanthropy at Twitter said: “We’re pleased to partner with CALM in this campaign as it leverages Twitter’s public nature to encourage conversation around mental health – a topic that isn’t easy to discuss especially at Christmas time.”