Hello, my friends! I can not believe it is already spooky season. It has been such a rollercoaster year for me. As I was changing my calendar to October I reflected on how this year has affected my mental health and the actions I took to ensure I sustained mental stability. Let’s be honest, we could always do better in regards to our mental health. So let’s talk about some coping skills that are commonly overlooked!
- Venting: This can be a great technique for those of us who like to bottle things up. Let the frustrations out! If you need just a simple venting session where you just want to speak without receiving advice, communicate this to the person you are venting to. It is okay to explain to others the kind of communication you need at the moment. You don’t even have to vent to a real person, write your feelings in a journal. I think we all know the relief of finally getting things off our chest, let’s learn how to stop keeping ourselves from doing it.
- Working Out: This is an awesome killing two birds with one stone technique. By working out our mental tolls through physical activity we are taking care of our entire well-being. This is my personal favorite for when I am feeling angry or anxious. There is truly something special about releasing endorphins.
- Taking a Time Out: Sometimes I just need to step away from a situation and breath. I have learned that going on drives or walks by myself listening to music I can sing my heart out to is very therapeutic. Sometimes taking a break allows me to remember the things that are frustrating me are simply temporary and to focus on the bigger picture.
- Trying New Things: Sometimes we grow out of techniques. Counting to ten may have worked for me when I was younger, but today it just makes me even more worked up. Coping skills are only useful if we utilize them. If we say we can color when we feel overwhelmed but we take out our frustrations on someone else instead of coloring, coloring is not a coping skill for us. Ask your friends what is their go-to technique for calming down you may find something that works wonders for you.
If you are feeling overwhelmed or not like yourself you are not alone. USG students, we are blessed to have the Center for Counseling and Consultation available to us for free. I have a couple of challenges for you guys. Take a moment and think to yourself, what am I doing to take care of my mental health? If you know you are in tip-top shape, text a friend right now saying “Mental health check” to let them know you care about their mental health and you are there for them.
I like how venting is at the top of your list. Heads-up, though, to anyone reading this: your friends will really appreciate it if you ask before venting to them. Just a simple, “Hey, are you in the right mental space to handle this?” goes a long way.