365 Days and 1000’s of Men No Longer On The Edge

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Small Business owners mental health has been badly effected by Lockdowns but Kenny Mammarella-D’Cruz has been there for them ybkbs small business news for smart business owners
Men's mental health has been badly effected by Lockdowns but Kenny Mammarella-D’Cruz has been there for them

It’s no surprise that many small business owners mental health has been battered, bruised and shattered because of the global pandemic. The uncertainty and pressures that it has caused piled on top of the usual trials and tribulations of running a business have intensified feeling for most people.

However for many men the thought of talking about their issues and mental health fills many with a sense of dread. (There’s one writing this.) But thanks to Kenny Mammarella-D’Cruz, there are thousands more that have had the space and time to talk of their issues over the last twelve months. And what a twelve months it’s been. 

Marc Ford

Marc Ford

Editor-in-Chief, Business Media Owner, Business Coach, Author and Keynote Speaker. Works with over 100's of small businesses every year. Trusted by BBC TV and Radio, Channel 4, Mercedes Benz, Hitachi Capital on business matters.

Marking a First Anniversary

Kenny started a check in group on the same day Lockdown #1 started. The MenCheck-in online group sessions have been attended thousands of times since lockdown and helped men become more able to deal with their displaced emotions during lockdown.

MenCheck-ins, the online men’s only groups and brainchild of man-guru Kenny Mammarella-D’Cruz celebrates its first anniversary on the exact same day that England went into its first National lockdown in March 2020. Kenny set up the groups as a response to the Covid-19 pandemic after sensing that these sessions would become a key way to keep men sane and families safe during times of social isolation.

The meetings began as lunchtime, by-donation bitesize events, and now nearly 365 days and 500 groups later, Kenny has created an engaged online community that provides social medicine for group participants.

Male Small Business Owners may well be reluctant to talk about what they're thinking and feeling
Men Starting to Feel Empowered

At these groups men are empowered by listening to others who are going through similar situations, with the power of the groups being shared, rather than held by one qualified expert. With no pressure to speak and no-one telling others what to do or how to fix their lives men have the space to hang out, be heard and get real, taking the edge of their lockdown situations and so they don’t lash out on others or lash in on themselves with depression, isolation and suicidal thoughts.

Kenny considers mental health to be a highly gendered issue. “In general, men prefer side-by-side communication, and tend to avoid clinical language and settings,” he says.

“Sessions are traditionally held in clinical rooms and swanky offices, but now, because MenCheck-ins happen online, it’s much more personable. People feel more comfortable in their own surroundings, and comfortable people have found it easier to share their feelings.”

Sharing Whatever is On Your Mind

Essentially, a MenCheck-In is a great space to share whatever is on your mind, release some pressure and connect with others in a welcoming, confidential, and non-clinical space.

It’s simply a men’s group, not a mental health support group, which allows for other needs to be met, like needs for connection, community, and having a good laugh. “We aim at early prevention of mental health issues. If a man has nowhere to share the small stuff or ‘just hang out’ before he knows it he could be facing bigger problems down the line.” Mammarella-D’Cruz says.

More To Do

For Kenny it’s simple “We want these groups to be as available as 12-step programmes such as Alcoholics Anonymous and feel as normal a routine for men as heading to the gym for a workout or the pub to wind down.”

Echoing those sentiments, MenCheck-in group regular Bertie Harriman-Smith explains “The groups are essential for me for maintaining my sanity and remembering what life is really about… I can chat, hang out, laugh, talk about real issues and feel connected in such a disconnected and chaotic time. I’ve checked in while I’ve been dangerously on the edge and I’ve also shown up for good company with nothing in particular up at all.”

These mini-men’s groups are currently running online every day, Mon-Sat 12.30pm-1.30pm, Sun 10.30am-11.30am, and you can donate however much you like towards the running of the online MenCheck-Ins.

Recently, MenCheck-ins big brother MenSpeak celebrated accreditation of all training sessions, meaning anyone can become a men’s group facilitator. The workshops are led by founder, Kenny, who imparts the knowledge he’s gleaned from two decades worth of experience in facilitating groups.

Note from writer: If you feel you are experiencing mental health struggles please follow the links below

More Links: 

The MenCheck-In Groups website

The Samaritans

Kenny Mammarella-D’Cruz (dubbed The Man Whisperer by ‘Newsweek’) meets Covid-19 issues with weekday lunchtime mini-men’s groups. He has facilitated men’s groups for 20 years, worked as a personal development consultant for 30 years and trains men and women to effectively communicate with men. His groups take the edge of mental health issues, reduce suicide and domestic violence figures and empower men to communicate and contribute to their families, communities and be the change they want see in society. He has worked with Mother Teresa in Calcutta and his mental health / refugee story is available HERE

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Business Coach, Author and Consultant. Has worked with BBC TV and Radio and Channel 4 on business matters. Trusted by Mercedes Benz, Hitachi Capital. Keynote speaker.