Press Release

MONTREAL, March 11, 2024  – A Léger survey conducted across Quebec between February 16 and 18 for the Mouvement Santé mentale Québec revealed that the vast majority of Quebecers consider themselves to be in good mental health, and most feel they have fairly good self-esteem. However, it is clear from the results that self-esteem and mental health appear to be strongly correlated: the findings show that Quebecers with a poorer perception of their mental health also have poorer self-esteem. It therefore remains essential to work to promote mental health and self-esteem in the population, particularly among younger people. Indeed, the survey shows that self-esteem increases significantly with age.

It will be the National Day for the Promotion of Positive Mental Health on March 13 and the Mouvement Santé mentale Québec and its member organizations would like to talk about the importance of working together to develop and maintain self-esteem and self-confidence. These act as pillars on which our choices, relationships and achievements rest. Good self-esteem enables us to recognize our strengths, abilities and limitations, and to express our needs. For Diane Chayer, t.s.m.s.s., President and Trainer at Diane Chayer Consultation, Inc. “Self-esteem and self-confidence support the process of restoring or acquiring the power to act of individuals and groups. Supporting their development even promotes social transformation.”


Developing self-esteem is not just an individual responsibility. For more than half the people who responded to the survey, the elements that have the most positive impact on the development and maintenance of self-esteem are friendships, family climate, level of education, romantic relationships and economic status. Conversely, discriminatory and stigmatizing comments and attitudes, the media in general and social media, and economic status seem to have a more negative impact. On this last point, it appears that economic status has a greater negative impact among 18-34 year-olds (26%) and those with an annual family income of less than $40,000 (25%), compared to 16% for all Quebecers, a significant difference of 10 and 9 points respectively.

On the work front, Renée Ouimet, Director of the Mouvement Santé mentale Québec, points out: “I was struck by the fact that just under half of respondents say they receive recognition from their colleagues at work, and no more than a third receive it from their superiors. And yet, for decades, numerous research studies have shown that recognition at work is a protective factor in mental health.” For Jacques Forest, Ph. D., professor at UQÀM’s École des sciences de la gestion, “Being recognized as a full-fledged person in his or her uniqueness at work by colleagues and managers gives us the energy we need to get moving. Recognition of effort, investment, the way work is done, the results and the impact of that work helps satisfy the psychological needs for autonomy, competence and social affiliation.”


We hear a lot about the impact of an aging population. What we don’t talk about, however, is the great strength of self-esteem among seniors. For example, 68% of people aged 18 to 34 say they have self-respect, compared with 89% of those aged 55 and over; 62% have reasons to be proud, compared with 86%; 56% are satisfied with themselves, compared with 81%. What if this finding led us to develop more intergenerational bridges, so that seniors can play a supporting role? Marjolaine Sioui, Executive Director of the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador Health and Social Services Commission, shares a current challenge: “As society has evolved, we’ve lost the wealth of elders, of the wise, of the transfer of culture, ceremonies, territory, knowledge, language, history and family. The core is no longer the same. This leads to a loss of reference points”. This reality is certainly similar in many communities.


So how can we be ourselves together, develop self-confidence and recognize our own value? For Roxane de la Sablonnière, full professor in the Psychology Department at the Université de Montréal and director of the Laboratory on social change, adaptation and well-being, “Our identities are many and varied. They overlap, interact and sometimes collide. We may, for example, identify with a culture, a nation, a religion, an ethnic, family, professional, sporting or generational group, a sexual orientation or a gender. These different identities combine to form a global identity that is unique to each individual. We can draw on a stronger identity to support our more vulnerable ones. The coherence and clarity of our identities are vitamins for our self-esteem.”

To help you find your way around, Mouvement Santé mentale Québec is offering a free activity on March 13 entitled “Let’s Be Ourself Together”, open to all in person or online. From 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., a series of dynamic conferences will be presented (in French). For the full program, visit https://mouvementsmq.ca/journee-nationale-de-la-promotion-de-la-santementalepositive/.


March 13 also marks the launch of the annual “Let’s Be Ourself Together” mental health promotion campaign. “Accepting yourself” is one of seven tips put forward to promote psychological well-being and resilience. Videos, information cards, posters, a card game and even a magazine on the role of self-esteem throughout life can be viewed online or ordered (available in English and French). Discover these tools at etrebiendanssatete.ca.


The campaign is supported by the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux and by thousands of ambassadors and relayers. Mouvement Santé mentale Québec is a group of community organizations dedicated to creating, developing and strengthening mental health. It is present throughout Quebec and involved in the regions through the actions of its member organizations. To find out more, visit mouvementsmq.ca or follow us on social networks: Facebook (@mouvementsmq), Instagram (@mouvement_santementaleqc), Twitter (@mouvementsmq), YouTube (@MouvementSantémentaleQuébec), the Mouvement Blog (mouvementsmq.ca/blogue), LinkedIn (@mouvement-santement-ment-quebec).

Mots-clics : #santémentale

For further information: or to schedule an interview: Sophie Allard, 514 808-9474 or sa@ahcom.ca


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