Tips for taking care of your mental health

Your mental health is important

Mental health is essential because it affects nearly all aspects of your life, including your job, relationship with your family, and general overall well-being. When you’re experiencing mental health issues, it can seem impossible to complete even basic assignments, attend classes, and your job can feel overwhelming.

The good news is, you’re not alone. And while it may sound cliché, the statement rings true now more than ever. 

Everyone experiences periods of depression or anxiety in their lives, but when it is so complex that our mental health impacts our day-to-day life at work and school, it is time to outsource and look for resources and support. 

How to work to improve your mental health

If you self-assess and feel you show signs of depression or other mental health-related concerns, reach out for help there are many resources available around campus! The Peer Support Centre offers various services and programs that help struggling students meet their needs. With the stress of asking for help in different areas of your life whether it be financial stress or food insecurity, you can always find support at SAMRU.

If you require professional mental health support, consider reaching out to your family doctor or utilizing the counsellors and health care professionals available to you through MRU Wellness.

Remember, with the ongoing uncertainty right now folks can be flexible and meet you where you’re at. If it is not possible to meet in person, many services and programs can be offered and facilitated through Google Meet and Zoom.

If you missed it in our last blog post, Off-campus resources for students to access over the holiday campus closure, various mental health services both in-person and virtually are listed for the Calgary and Alberta area.

6 Ways to care of your mental health during times of uncertainty

1. Connecting with others. 

Humans are social creatures, and it’s important to have strong, healthy relationships with others. Having good social support may help protect you against the harms of stress. It is also good to have different types of connections. Besides connecting with family and friends, you could find ways to get involved with your community or (virtually for now) on campus. For example, you could volunteer with SAMRU or find a group of pals who share similar interests by joining a SAMRU Club! Don’t see one that calls to you? Start your own, be a trailblazer!

Stay tuned for information on the upcoming Clubs Expo.

2. Move your body!

Physical and mental health are interconnected. If you are working on your mental health, you can also work to improve your overall physical health.

To help protect your mental health, you can try to invest in your physical health too:

  • Eating balanced meals
  • Moving at least 20 mintues a day
  • Prioritizing sleep

While it would be nice if everyone could get 8 hours of sleep and eat nutritious meals, we understand there are barriers to these privileges. Maybe you work 40 hours a week and study, maybe you are always on the go, or having an off day and forgot to get groceries, these stresses contribute to your overall mental health.

3. Make a list, check things off!

Making lists allows us to see everything we need to do and gives us that little boost of validation we need. Making lists based on the urgency of the tasks can allow you to stay organized, on top of things, and generally less stressed! Win-win.

  • A master list. This lays out your long-term goals. If you need to Marie Condo your closet, jot it all down on your master list.
  • A weekly project list. This should contain everything that needs to go down in the next 7 days.
  • A high-impact tasks list. This list shows you everything you need to do prono! Like now!

4. Be Sure to Do What You Enjoy

Sometimes the anxiety of the unknown makes it easy to forget the things you love to do. Make a list and plan to participate in as many as possible, even if this may mean participating virtually!.

Remember that there are often creative ways to still participate in the things you love. Here’s another example: If you enjoy meeting with your book club, organize a meeting through Zoom or another program.

5. Practice Meditation

Studies have shown that meditation relaxes both your body and mind. All you need is a quiet location, a comfortable position and an open mind. So how does meditation help? Studies show that meditation:

  • Can help to relieve stressful feelings
  • Provides tools to cope with stress and uncertainty
  • Reduces negative emotions or attitudes
  • Nourishes creativity
  • Helps you develop patience
  • Allows you to focus on being present

Mindful provides this free guide to meditation here.

6. Talk to a counsellor

Visit MRU Wellness to access professional mental health care services. If you want to book in for a session, It may be helpful to make a short list of topics you want to discuss with your counsellor.

SAMRU understands the coming weeks will bring a sense of uncertainty. If you have any questions about ongoing programs and services offered to you as members of the Students’ Association, please reach out to Follow the @samrubuzz Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for the latest information from your SA!