Mental health is often the first thing we let go when life gets crazy, which arguably is all the time. Mental health is health too and you deserve to take care of yourself both mentally and physically.
Although it might seem self explanatory, I’m going to define the term mental health for clarification. The term mental health refers to a person’s cognitive, behavioral, and emotional well-being. Our mental health is heavily related to how we act, feel and behave. A common misconception is when people consider the term mental health to mean the absence of a mental disorder. Mental health refers to one’s mental well-being regardless of their status with a mental disorder.
In recent years, mental health awareness has become more and more emphasized, which is a well deserved movement. Mental illnesses affect 19% of the adult population, 46% of teenagers and 13% of children each year. There are many arguments over whether there are more mental health issues as of recently, or if people are just becoming more open with their mental health issues. I believe it is a combination of both that has allowed us better opportunity to address the topic of mental health.
As a college student, your mental health can quickly fall to the bottom of your priorities, which is an unfortunate but likely situation. The Mental Health Foundation has outlined 10 ways to look after your mental health and it is something every college student should read.
The steps are as follows:
Talk about your feelings
Keep active (as in exercise, not schedule-wise)
Eat Well (we can not emphasize this enough!)
Drink sensibly (alcohol is not the right way to manage difficult feelings)
Keep in Touch (especially now)
Ask for help (YES!!)
Take a break (or a few)
Do something you’re good at
Accept who you are
Care for others (but not at the expense of caring for yourself)
Take care of yourself, you deserve it.