I have recently joined a new movement in Nashville, Tennessee called CHANGE DIRECTION. It is a movement born from the slaughter of children and teachers at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut in December of 2012.

Based in Washington D.C., it attracted the attention of Michelle Obama and Prince Harry, along with Richard Gere and the musician, Chris Stapleton.

So what is it?

The movement asks each person to make a pledge to tell five people the five signs of emotional struggle. These signs are:

  1. Change in personality
  2. Hopelessness
  3. Withdrawal
  4. Poor personal care
  5. Agitation.

Each sign has a cleverly designed emoji.

Someone struggling doesn’t have to have all five signs; rather, a single sign is cause for concern and empathy.

While Change Direction is not about fundraising, it does ask for a pledge to help change the direction of the American culture’s understanding of mental illness. Certainly, they need and want funding to establish chapters in each state but their primary drive is to ask others to make pledges.

As a member of the committee to build the movement in Tennessee, I’m learning that each state has  individual drives to educate  their residents. New Hampshire is one of the older, more developed chapters.

No matter where you live, you can join the movement in which you pledge and ask 5 others to pledge to know the five signs of mental struggles.

Just go to www.Change Direction.org and make your pledge.