Research demonstrates that people can remedy stress if they laugh more (casual leisure), find a hobby (serious leisure), and engage in meaning-making activities, such a volunteering in community or toward social causes (project-based leisure). So, where do you start?
For parents the wonderful aspiration of a memorable summer break often turns into the harsh reality of coordinating multiple events and schedules on top of all of our other responsibilities. It can feel like a whirlwind in which we are simply trying to keep up or too exhausted to actually enjoy.
Whatever you’re experiencing be sure to take a moment to name and recognize the emotion, with curiosity, not judgement. The bottom line is that we are all going to have different emotional responses to the current crisis in front of us. As written by author Nicki Peverett, “we are in the same storm, but not in the same boat.”
It is known that survivors of natural disasters have a 30 to 40 percent chance of suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). One thing that can be done to counteract the long-term mental health effects of a disaster is to seek help early and to talk about the experience with professionals that are trained to help.
Some stress is necessary to motivate us to act. Think about the stress you might feel while preparing for a test. It can motivate you to study hard do well on the exam. However, too much stress can interfere with our daily life and performance and can lead to long-term health issues.
Ask, “Are you thinking of killing yourself?” This may seem like a difficult question and many fear that asking someone this question will put thoughts of suicide into their minds, but research indicates that asking individuals that are at risk of suicide does not increase the chance of suicide attempts or suicidal thoughts.
Adjusting to college is hard enough without adding the curveball of COVID into the mix. You may be someone who welcomed the changes brought on by the pandemic. The reality is some people are ok with or even prefer the “new normal” and others do not. The truth is that it is okay to not be okay AND it’s also okay to be okay.