Mental Health Awareness Week


Rachael Hanson Contributing Writer As you’ve probably noticed, this week is Mental Health Awareness week. Because of the onset of final papers, projects, and tests, this time in our semester is a key time to recognize a huge mental health issue: stress. All of us deal with stress, but many of our habits might not be healthy. The psychology department is committed to helping students manage stress in a healthy manner. Here are some of our recommendations.

10 ways YOU can deal with stress:

o 3 point to-do list. Never put more than 3 things on your to do list. Once all three items are done, you can make a new one. This prevents you from thinking/stressing out too much at one time.

o Reward yourself – If you finish a to-do item, treat yourself.

o Take productive breaks. Do anything to take your mind off work, a brief snack outside, a walk, and then continue with your work with a clear mind.

o Use mindfulness. Mindfulness is existing in the present, keeping your mind on the task at hand and not thinking about the past or present. Try it at a meal or snack first, only thinking about the food and how it tastes. Then apply that concentration to your work.

o Productive workplace. Find a place free of distractions so that you can actually be productive when you want to be.

o Take care of yourself. Make sure to get enough sleep, eat healthfully, stay active and don’t OD on caffeine.

o Don’t isolate yourself. Surround yourself with people you enjoy and can rely on. Being around friends will also help you remember that you’re not the only one dealing with stress.

o Refresher naps. Give yourself some close-eye every now and then to re-energize yourself. Remember, don’t sleep for longer than 30 minutes, and never nap as a replacement for sleep.

o Talk to your professors. Really, do it. They probably will be understanding if you have a problem.

o And if the pressure is too much, seek help from a friend or family member.

If you’re having persistent or unmanageable problems with stress or any other mental health issue, Winton offers counseling services. All it takes is a phone call.

Amber Laurie ’07 and Rachael Hanson ’07 are psychology majors. Contact them at [email protected] and [email protected]