Wellness at School
“Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.” — Albert Einstein
Wellness at school is all about adjusting attitudes, accessing resources, and recruiting mentors. School can often feel like the last place you have time to focus on your health, but succeeding academically doesn’t mean you have to feel overwhelmed and anxious or neglect your physical health. There are resources available to help you prioritize your health, including many people whose wisdom could benefit your journey. There are also opportunities to dial down the negativity often circulated by frustrated classmates.
If you’re feeling exhausted or anxious at school, then it’s time to evaluate how you can make space for wellness at your college or university.
- On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being not at all, 10 being very much), how “well” do you feel at school from day to day?
- If you could wake up tomorrow and have the perfect day of school, what would it look like?
- How much physical energy do you feel you have at school?
- Which relationships at school cause you great stress or anxiety?
- Which relationships at school result in joy?
Skip the Venting Session
Sometimes bonding with classmates in college or graduate school has a lot to do with sharing your disdain for a professor, a program, or your overall workload. While it can feel cathartic in the moment to vent with friends, it’s all too easy to become trapped in low morale or continued habits of engaging in negative conversations. Pay attention to conversations, and consider changing the subject to life outside of school, personal goals, and topics that give you energy rather than topics that zap your energy.
It’s easy to forget that your tuition typically covers a great number of resources that promote wellness. Do you access the gym or take that free yoga class? Is there free mental health or career counseling available to you? Are there student groups focused on health? Online Counseling@Northwestern students can reach out to their student support adviser or connect with classmates via the platform for moral support. College and graduate students can make a list of all the resources they’d like to access to improve physical and mental health. Pay specific attention to the resources that really draw your attention and begin by looking into how to take advantage of the resources to help increase your levels of wellness.
Recruit Diverse Mentors
Resilient students have a team of people in their lives they consider to be resources. Who’s on your team? Recruiting a team of people of different age groups, backgrounds, and professions at your college or university can make your educational goals seem more manageable and your overall experience more positive. Never be afraid to ask people how they practice self-care or what they wish they had done for themselves as a student.
Outline for Growth
When do you feel affected or overwhelmed by negativity at school? How can you create opportunities for positive reflection and planning in your school schedule?
What school resources are available that can help improve mental and physical health? What friends or classmates would you like to recruit to join you in these activities?
Which people in your academic department and the university setting can provide guidance about personal wellness? Who would you like to get to know better, and how can you get in touch with them?
Look over your answers and consider three changes you can make in the next month to improve wellness at school.
Want more actionable tips? Visit our wellness resource page to develop a personalized plan for wellness in your life!