How to Prioritize Your Mental Health

Let’s admit it, the pandemic has taken its toll on ALL of us in some way or the other. Being forced to stay inside and limit our usual activities for almost a year has challenged us in ways we probably never would have expected. The sudden change in circumstances has led to increased anxiety and depression as well as an overall decline in  mental health among the general population, including college students. According to Active Minds, 39% of college students will go through “a significant mental health issue.”  Even while accepting the new normal, it is important to be actively conscious of our mental health state  and to take care of it. Our needs matter.

Remember to make time for things that matter to you. Self care is important! Whether that be exercising, cooking your favorite meal or FaceTiming the friends who are far away right now (something we can all relate to!). Maybe even find a new hobby with the extra time now spent indoors. It is normal to feel overwhelmed by everything we have to do, combined with the realities of the pandemic, but it is important to keep a balanced routine and put your needs and self care high on the priority list. 

brick building with 'how are you really feeling' printed on the side. Photo by Finn from Unsplash Stay connected to your communities as much as possible. It can be hard with most work and socializing events taking place over Zoom these days, but staying involved on campus can help you  continue to meet new people and feel connected to the  school community. 

At SCU, we are able to take advantage of CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services) with six free appointments with a counselor. If things feel too overwhelming, talking with a professional is a great option because it is literally  their job to help assess our needs and provide us with solutions. They can even refer you to off campus therapists if you want to continue with therapy. 

Although stigma exists when talking about mental health, it shouldn’t. Visiting a mental health professional is  just like going to the doctor when we have physical health problems! Our mental health requires care just like any other need. 

To feel at your best, remember to take time for yourself and prioritize your needs. Whether it is the tips from above or something else to boost your mood, make a little time for you everyday. When we take care of ourselves from the inside, it allows us to truly shine from the outside and live our best life.