18 Sep 2023

TikTok for mental health?

Social media gets pretty bad rap when it comes to mental health. But it can actually be incredibly helpful in lots of ways – when done well. Doing it well is what has led us to partner with Rethink Mental Illness, and fund a production trainee to learn the skills they need to create punchy short form films – which are now live on TikTok. And why TikTok? Not only is it where young people are, but it can also be profoundly impactful. Here’s how.

TikTok can drive awareness

One thing that is really important to both Inside Job Productions and Rethink Mental Illness is the power of sharing stories from people with lived experience. By sharing their own experiences with mental health, those people on film can help destigmatise conversations around mental health challenges and promote understanding. Every time someone starts a conversation based off a film they’ve seen, we know we’ve done something to help destigmatise mental illness. 

Education building

Many professionals and advocates share mental health tips, coping strategies, and resources on TikTok, making it easier for users to access helpful information. We want to ensure that the information being shared online is beneficial to the viewer, and genuinely provides useful advice that can be of benefit. But the content is about very real topics – medication, diagnoses, the Mental Health Act – and doesn’t skirt around hard issues. 

Community building

Seeing someone else explain your symptoms, or share how they are going through something very similar to you, can help forge a sense of community – vital as often living with a mental illness can be isolation. TikTok and other platforms can provide a way for people to stay connected and reduce feelings of loneliness and otherness. Users can find communities of like-minded individuals who share similar interests or challenges, providing a sense of belonging and support. Seeing others share similar experiences or feelings can help viewers realise they’re not alone in their struggles, providing comfort and validation.

It’s been four months since our production trainee Charly joined Inside Job Productions and Rethink Mental Ilness, and started creating content. We know that the programme has been having a great impact of them as an individual, improving confidence, personal growth and ability. Check out the channel to see the content that has been created, and how it is affecting people with lived experience.