The reality is that all people have mental health, however, it is important that we are maintaining our mental wellness. According to the World Health Organization, mental wellness is defined as “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.”
As people of color, as young adults, and as humans it is important to be intentional about taking care of yourself. The goal is to keep focused on your own needs first as a person, so you can be available to be the best to serve your school community, your family, your friends and the community at large.
Few practical self-care tips from Therapist Aid (2020) and Psych Central (2016):
Schedule time for your own self care.Put it on your schedule at work, even for 10 minutes to stretch or go for a walk at work.
Self-care means the value of learning to say no.You can not always say yes to everyone and take care of yourself.
Self-care means taking time to do things you enjoy.Self-care means taking time to do things you enjoy. These activities could be as simple as reading a book, or as big as taking a vacation.
Self-care also means taking care of yourself.This means eating regular meals, getting enough sleep, caring for personal hygiene, and anything else that maintains good health.
Make self-care a priority.There will always be other things to do, but don’t let these interrupt the time you set aside for self-care. Self-care should be given the same importance as other responsibilities.
Connecting with community.Community can be any group that you feel connected, supported, validated and encouraged. It is important that you make that a priority in your mental wellness practice.
Make self-care a habit.Just like eating one apple doesn’t eliminate health problems, using self-care just once won’t have much effect on reducing stress. Choose activities that you can do often, and that you will stick with.