Mental health can seem like a big topic. It’s hard to know where to start. Our best advice? Start with YOU! Take the time to care for your own mental health. It’s a resource we all have, but just like physical health, it’s not to be taken for granted.
Take care of yourself
Some of the things we do for our physical health like getting enough sleep, eating well, and minimizing screen time, are also good for our mental health. But there are other things we can do as well. Learn more about staying well.
Ask for help early
The other important role you can play is to notice when you are feeling unwell and to ask for help when that happens, just like you would if you had an earache or leg injury. Often, it’s hard for others to see emotional pain, and they might not notice until things get really tough.
Asking for help can be hard, but it can really help you and those around you if you reach out early on, before things get harder. We all feel sad or anxious or angry now and then so it is hard to know if how you are feeling is part of the normal ups and downs of life or something to get checked out. Learn about signs to watch for.
Support your friends
One thing we hear a lot about is how much students care about their friends and classmates. They want to know how to help a friend the right way. There are things you can do to listen and support when a friend is experiencing problems with their mental health, but it is really important that you know that you don’t have to do this alone. Sometimes students take on too much when a friend is hurting. Your main job is to support them to get the help they need. Learn about how to help a friend.
Finally, some students want to take on a leadership role in the area of school mental health. We welcome your ideas and involvement! Have a look at the Take Action section for happenings in this area.