Developing a Common Mindset Among Collaborators

Each person’s mental health journey is personal and unique. The infinite variability of students’ possible journeys has many causes. In addition, there are a myriad of terms, definitions, personal and professional worldviews, services and sectors that aim to support students in both building their positive mental health and in diagnosing, treating or recovering from mental illness, disorders and additions. However, they all have different messages, so it becomes overwhelming for a student to recognize which are more relevant to them and at a particular time and circumstance, as well as those designing and delivering programs and services.

Some may find it difficult to believe it’s possible to design and deliver comprehensive strategies that support this infinite variability, but this toolkit supports the task of doing just that. It starts by developing a common frame for student positive mental health and health-enabling environments that encompasses the myriad of terms, definitions and worldviews, while honouring the key essence of each. This enables the myriad of views to be woven into a whole person perspective, more representative of a student’s perspective, as illustrated by the image of a multi-strand cable.

In a specialized world, there’s little time, inclination nor support for weaving these myriad worldviews back together into a unified whole that helps a person navigate the particular contexts of their life, so the collaborative student mental health strategy is based on collaboration to help do that weaving.

The frame for the toolkit is made up of