Opinion: Normalize not being OK

Rhonda Wheeler, Editor-in-Chief

We are living in weird, stressful times.

We are in the middle of a pandemic, civil unrest and a presidential election that has the potential to change everything.

A study from the American Psychological Association found nearly eight in 10 adults say the coronavirus pandemic is a significant source of stress in their lives. 

Around three in five adults say the amount of issues in America is overwhelming. 

Nearly one in five adults say their mental health is worse now than what it was this time last year.

Gen Z adults are most likely to report experiencing common symptoms of depression compared to other generations. Seven in 10 say that in the last two weeks, they felt so tired they sat around and did nothing.

We are living in a time no one could have predicted and no one knows exactly what to do.. It is OK not to be OK right now. 

The sooner we accept that, the sooner we can learn to cope with these emotions. We may not have all the answers, but we can still take care of ourselves while we go through this.

We are quickly approaching what would be considered a stressful time in a normal semester, and on top of everything else going on, many students are feeling twice as overwhelmed. 

Take care of yourself first. Self-care isn’t always bubble baths and face masks. Sometimes it’s drinking extra water and having a healthy meal. Other times, it’s going on a walk in nice weather.

Try reading your favorite book or  writing your thoughts in a journal. You don’t have to be a master at writing to keep a journal; sometimes you can write incomplete sentences just to get your feelings across.

You can even watch mindless TV to distract yourself from everything going on for a few minutes.

Meditate. While you do so, go over what is bothering you. Find what you can fix, what you can’t, accept what you can do to move forward. Meditation can be a stress reliever. It also gives someone a chance to think through everything they have to do.

Mental health is more important than ever right now. Stay safe and take care of yourself. Remember: we will get through this.