Given recent rapid departures from Goshen College, unexpected returns home, and evolving COVID-19 news, many of us are experiencing a wide range of intense emotions at the moment. You might be feeling a sense of anxiety, disappointment, lack of motivation, or numbness in response to recent changes. You may also feel a palpable sense of grief or loss as you consider experiences and friends that you’ll miss. As we prepare for online learning and life away from school, it is important to also pause to give time and attention to our mental wellness.
Two of the most common reactions to sudden and/or disappointing change can be anxious or depressive feelings. As you take stock of your own well-being, consider the following key factors in coping well during uncertain times:
- Schedule and balance: Creating structure where there is none can be difficult, but it will be critical in the coming months. Seek to carve out chunks of time for heads-down work, time outdoors, and relaxation and formally document (on a calendar, list, etc.) your plan as a step toward feeling more in control of your days.
- Quality social contact: Identifying friends and family with whom you can communicate regularly, deeply, and honestly is critical. Since much of this communication will be online, consider scheduling regular online chats with loved ones and be intentional about checking in about what is and isn’t going well.
- Exercise and sleep: You’ve likely heard about the importance of exercise and sleep hygiene in maintaining mental health, but I’ll stress it again here: These are critical factors in pushing back on anxiety and depression. Prioritize regular exercise (outdoors, if possible) and quality sleep in order to boost cognitive function and a sense of well-being.
- Mental health tools: There are a number of helpful tools available for maintaining wellness and practicing mindfulness– consider the free-to-GC myStrength app (access code= OaklawnCommunity) or mindfulness/meditation apps like Headspace or Calm, which have free offerings available during the current crisis. Also, if you are a GC student who lives in Indiana, campus counselors can meet with you online (campus counselors may only practice in the state where they are licensed)– request form is here.
Action for Today: Check in with a family member or friend about what is and isn’t going well.
|For ideas on time management and study test-taking strategies, contact the ASC team:
To make an appointment for online tutoring or writing support: tutorcal.goshen.edu
To request accommodations for a disability, contact Judy Weaver, firstname.lastname@example.org
To request an accountability partner, click here