College is a wonderful time of challenge and growth.
While there will be emotional peaks and valleys, there will also be a wide range of opportunities to develop resiliency skills, achieve balance in imbalance, and attain authentic happiness. By being in tune to your emotions and striving to stay balanced, you can discover ways to flourish.
The best defense is a good offense.
Taking proactive measures to discover an optimal state of emotional well-being is a wonderful avenue to prepare for the emotional journey of college. Emotional well-being is a multifaceted state, influenced by a number of factors.
The seven S’s of emotional well-being
- Sleep. Get enough sleep on a daily basis—a tired mind and body are poor allies in stressful situations.
- Sustenance. Eat well, exercise daily, and learn some stretching techniques to help you relax. Avoid relying on false stress reducers like alcohol, caffeine, or nicotine.
- Solitude. All of us need some time alone. Use that time to refill your emotional reserves, give your mind a chance to quiet down, and rest. The more you learn (through meditation, relaxation, restful activity, and recreation) to quiet your mind of all the chatter, the more effective your solitude will be.
- Sharing. Share your thoughts, emotions, hopes, fears, and your life with someone else. Find people you trust enough to share your failures with as well as your victories.
- Silliness. Don't take yourself so seriously. At least once a week, do something fun that involves “play.” Nothing relieves stress and tension better than a good laugh. Try to laugh a dozen times a day.
- Spirituality. Spirituality doesn't necessarily mean religion. If a particular religion or spiritual practice speaks you, put it into action in your life. If getting out in nature is a spiritual experience for you, go regularly. A strong sense of spirituality can give you some perspective on your life and provide you with guidance and direction, which will help bring happiness to your day.
- Schedule. Make time management a part of your life. Schedule time for all of the other "S's." The less time and energy you have to devote to trying to find the time, the more likely you can do things like exercise, play, or enjoy some solitude.
If you are concerned for your emotional well-being or the emotional well-being of others, please know that there are many campus and external resources that may assist you, including:
- TAO (Therapist Assisted Online)
- Inner Resource Room
- Mindfulness Workshops
- Snite Museum of Art
- University Counseling Center
- Campus Ministry
- Care Consultants
- Let’s Talk