Mental health during COVID: Tips for ILAC students, staff and teachers

This Saturday, October 10th is World Mental Health Daywhich aims to raise awareness in the global community about mental health.  


Taking care of your body and mind is always important, but especially during COVIDThe past several months have brought many new challenges, such as adapting to studying and working from home, limited social interactions and an uncertain future. Here are 5 things that you can do to take care of your mental health during COVID: 


Self -care. 

Take care of your body by eating healthy, well-balanced meals. Exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep and reduce your consumption of alcohol and drugs. Try yoga, deep breathing techniques and meditation for stress relief. Most of all, be kind to yourself and allow yourself to feel your emotions rather than bottle them up. 


Connect with others. 

Talk with your loved ones and people you trust about how you are feeling. Chatting with friends and classmates online can lead to deeper connections and friendships. Remember, you are not alone! ILAC partner International Insurance provides free mental health webinars every month for students and educators for support and guidance. Register to attend this Saturday at CARES. 


Set a schedule for school, work and life balance. 

Maintain a consistent routine which includes sleep-wake times, exercise, work and school schedules. It can be easy to do schoolwork all day because it feels like there is nothing else to do, but following a routine will help you create a sense of normalcy. Take regular break and get a clear understanding of expectations for assignments, course work, exams and projects. 


Create happy habits. 

What usually helps you when you are in a difficult and stressful period of your life? It can be as simple as going for a run, enjoying food you like, listening to your favourite music or watching a movie. Treat yourself with feel-good activities that can help you feel motivated and uplifted. 


Physical exercise. 

Moving your body, whether it is a fast walk or long stretch has an immediate effect on your mood. Studies show that physical exercise increases dopamine, which is the ‘feel-good’ hormone in your body. Take a stroll in the park or do some jumping jacks in your room to get a boost in happiness and hope. This weekend, join international students and colleagues from around the world at the ILAC Virtual Run, taking place on Saturday, October 10th. 


It’s okay not to feel okay – it’s normal to sometimes feel scared, confused, anxious, lonely or even angry. Focus on taking care of yourself and ask for help from – we are all in this together! 


Need to talk to someone?  ILAC offers 24/7 mental health support by phone, text and email.  

Contact Wendy at 905-409-8728 or email wendy@qcareinc.caAll calls and services are free, private and confidential. 

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