Happy to Help is a new series that offers quick tips for pesky issues—anything from how to fill out the FAFSA to what to watch during stressful times. Faculty, staff, students, and alumni will provide answers and expertise in brief listicle, visual, or video formats. All CU Denver community members can ask a question or present a solution by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
To kick off the series, Kristin Kushmeider, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Health, Wellness, Advocacy & Support, provides five tips on how to support positive mental health during these challenging and uncertain times.
- Get outside and engage in some physical activity! Research shows that physical activity can help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. The Wellness Center has free virtual classes available for everyone in the CU Denver community. Tired of being on your computer? Take a walk or bike ride, spend time in your garden if you have one, or go for a hike if you can.
- Start a gratitude journal. Gratitude journals can help keep you grounded and appreciate the small things in life, especially now when so many people are experiencing tremendous grief, loss, and trauma. If you need help getting started and want a journal with helpful prompts and guidance, here are some recommendations.
- Use helpful tools like YOU@CUDenver or download the Nod app to help you stay connected to campus and each other. Suffering from loneliness and isolation is hard, and being isolated under quarantine during a pandemic is brutal. Stay connected!
- Practice meditation. Meditation can help quiet the mind, reduce stress, and alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety. Check out resources like HeadSpace or Insight Timer to learn more about meditation, and how to start your own meditation practice or boost your current practice.
- Ask for help. I love this PSA put out by NAMI: it’s OK not to be OK right now! If you’re feeling overwhelmed, disconnected, anxious, depressed, sad, or if you’re thinking of hurting yourself or your relationships are suffering, it’s OK to ask for help. Students can meet with counselors through the Counseling Center for virtual appointments and faculty and staff can access the Real Help Line or CU Denver’s Employee Assistance Program for counseling and support. If anyone is experiencing abuse in their relationships while at home the Phoenix Center at Auraria is available.