Promoting self-care involves demonstrating resiliency and self-advocacy and providing empathic encouragement to safeguard the overall emotional and physical health of both the YAPM and young adults. Using lived experience with purpose and intent to promote self-care means:

  • Modeling and encouraging overall healthy habits in daily life that have been helpful to the YAPM;

  • Encouraging young adult engagement in safe, healthy activities that reduce stress and build positive social connections;

  • Modeling, through their actions, the ways that YAPM manage both the potential and the actual challenges that accompany their behavioral health conditions;

  • Demonstrating the self-awareness to understand and manage triggers that may arise for themselves;

  • Supporting young adults in managing triggering situations in healthy ways;

  • Supporting young adults in knowing their rights and/or requesting accommodations in education, employment, housing and other life situations;

  • Advocating to increase understanding of behavioral health conditions; and

  • Sharing resources and strategies for self-care that have been helpful to the YAPM.

“In promoting self-care…it’s important to support young adults in knowing their rights and the different types of accommodations they can get at work, in school, or other types of environments. It can be really daunting when you start working or going to school, and if you don’t know all the accommodations it can be even scarier, and part of being a peer mentor, it’s my job to share these accommodations and how they can be so helpful in making the transition to school or to work…For example, if I’m having a hard time [at work], I can ask for some extending time on my notes, and that’s totally fine with my supervisor and it’s also [an accommodation] I have with HR. That experience is something that I share with young adults, and sharing my lived experience with asking for accommodations has been really helpful. - Olivia Young Adult Peer Mentor