As the semester winds down, make sure to take care of yourself

Kalyn Johnson

It’s that time of the year where we all feel like time is running out. With four active weeks left in the semester, this can feel like a race against the clock. With two essays and three exams in the same week, I understand that. But sometimes we have to take care of ourselves.

That doesn’t mean going to mandatory chapter meetings or doing homework while there is a YouTube video playing in the background, but it means paying attention to ourselves and being selfish for a moment or two.

As an individual who is heavily involved on campus and goes all in or nothing, I can tell you first hand that these last four weeks of the semester are going to be rough. Weekly chapter and executive board meetings, putting on programs, ensuring the happiness of all twenty something of my members while making sure they’re getting their hours in can be hard.

On top of that: working 15 hours a week, taking 15 hours of classes and trying to fit in study time, there is just so little time to take a step back and breathe. But we must take time for ourselves because we’re only human.

I’m sure every student knows about the importance of taking time for themselves and about finding the appropriate balance between studies and self-care. Kirsten Lindner, a junior from Elizabethtown, gave me her assessment on the topic.

“I think sometime students forget how important it is to take times for themselves. Mental health is just important as any other health or academics. I even struggle with this,” she said.

As a student who has struggled with mental health issues in the past, I know first hand that it can be hard, especially during this time of the academic year.

Making an appointment with the Counseling and Testing Center can sound scary, but it isn’t once you get there. I believe students think if someone is going to counseling then something is wrong with them or that the person is too weak to deal with the issue on their own, but that isn’t true.

Strong people seek help when they notice inconsistency within their own behavior. Having a professional help us with our own mental heal doesn’t mean we aren’t strong, but it means that we just need help. It means we were brave enough to seek the proper channels in order to get the help we needed.

With my own mental health journey, I’ve learned that it’s of the utmost importance that we take time for ourselves. I know a lot of students are helpers, just like myself, and we tend to put ourselves second or even last when it comes to other people’s problems, but that can’t always happen. We need to pay attention to our minds and our bodies and what they’re telling us.

The University of Michigan compiled an easy list of 10 things you can do to help improve your mental health, and all of them can be great starting points.

Improving your diet, exercising, writing in a journal, practice mediation or even shaking up your routines are just a few . The road to an improved mental state doesn’t have to be a difficult one so go ahead and start today.