The LCHS Student Services Team publishes a monthly newsletter for students and families. In May, they drew from several resources to highlight the importance of mental health and wellness. You can learn more from the following resources:
Mental health is an important part of our overall wellbeing and health. It’s important to know that we all, at some point in our lives, have depression, anxiety, and other difficult feelings that don’t go away easily or quickly. There are effective treatments that can help us regain our mental health and wellness. It is important to take care of ourselves and support others during what can be an uncertain and nervous time, especially with the current coronavirus pandemic. While feeling worried or sad are completely normal emotions to be experiencing, there are things we can do to get the anxiety or sadness under control and allow us to function and even thrive.
What is Mental Health Wellness?
Wellness includes steps we take to stay healthy physically, mentally and emotionally. Talking care of our wellness doesn’t mean we will never be sick or depressed. But when we do get sick, we will be stronger and resilient. Wellness comes from positive steps we take today for a healthy future.
A big part of knowing ourselves is understanding our emotions. What makes me angry? How do I handle setbacks? When am I happiest? When we are able to answer these questions, we are able to get help when we need it. We can figure out what we need in the moment and choose how to respond.
Caring for Self
- What have you done in the past to get through a hard time?
- Who are the adults you trust?
- Do you know where you can get help?
- What helps you?
By answering these questions, you are building wellness resources for your future ability to cope and bounce back. This is also known as resilience.
Building a Community of Wellness
The sense of connection that grows through caring for friends strengthens everyone. We all have greater wellness as we build more connections with others. Whether your community, your town, neighborhood, street or just your family, the health of others in that community affects the wellness of everyone. We are all helpers in our community and we all matter.
Caring for My Friends
A good way to care for ourselves is to care for others. The sense of meaning and wellbeing we derive from helping friends, family and neighbors boosts our own wellness. When we share our feelings, understand others’ feelings and ask about the health of others, we are also building our own wellness.
Caring During COVID
It can be difficult enough to be able to care for yourself and others during regular times, let alone during a world-wide pandemic. Physical distancing doesn’t have to mean cutting yourself off from others, it just requires new strategies and methods. During this time, people you care about may be especially eager to connect with you. Consider reaching out to them.
9 Ways to Fight Mental Health Stigma
- Talk openly about mental health
- Educate yourself and others
- Be conscious of language
- Encourage equality between physical and mental illness
- Show compassion for those with mental illness
- Choose empowerment over shame
- Be honest about treatment
- Let the media know when they’re being stigmatizing
- Don’t harbor self-stigma