Look after yourself on World Mental Health day and beyond
Saturday 10th October 2020
World Mental Health Day 2020, comes at a time when all our daily lives have changed considerably as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The past months have brought many challenges for us and for people with mental health conditions, many experiencing even greater social isolation than before. At OSFC we’re committed to supporting the mental health and wellbeing of students, staff and our growing community however we can, all year round.
WMHD gives us the opportunity to share our internal resources and support offering with you, alongside a series of external links we’ve collated exclusively for the campaign.
Mental health and wellbeing can be seen as a sliding scale moving from good to poor. We like to encourage not only recognising poor mental health, but also noticing when your mental health is good, the reasons why it’s good and support you so you feel able to put these things into daily practice to maintain a more frequent positive state of wellbeing.
There are times, for all of us, when our mental health can suffer for a range of different reasons, and sometimes for no reason at all. This is when knowing, simply what your mind needs, can make a huge impact in your mental health and help you to sit on the ‘good’ end of the sliding scale. Mental health and wellbeing are as individual as you are. For you, the thing that helps could be as simple as seeing friends, exercise, or snuggling up with your family pet on the sofa. All great tools you can apply to your day to day life, especially when you feel that things are out of control like they have been during coronavirus restrictions.
It’s not always easy to positively influence your own mental health. It is just as important to recognise when we might need support from others or to take a break from sources of negativity. If you’re seeing signs, in yourself or those around you, like not sleeping well; struggling to focus and being irritable, it may be helpful to reach out for support. At times like these it is important to look after yourself, know that you can always talk to someone close, contact your GP, use online resources and take some time to listen to your inner self and keep well.
You can access a few of our favourite resources below:
A downloadable tool for sixth form students that helps think about how to look after your mental health > https://bit.ly/3nsnxtd
Specialist support for Coronavirus and mental health > https://bit.ly/3d7R8U8
A quick wellbeing questionnaire with links to help manage the way you think, feel and act > https://bit.ly/34xe7nV
Practical tips on how to look after your mental health > https://bit.ly/33BymRR
Support and treatment in Oldham specifically > https://bit.ly/3dauQkS
At OSFC we can help ourselves, our friends, and the wider college community by taking the time to actively listen to those around us, lend a supportive ear when others share their troubles or concerns and try to understand that mental health problems can be different for everyone. If you are in college and feel anxious, worried or need to talk you can contact your progress tutor in person or by email. You can also collect an OSFC Care Card from reception or the support hub, a physical handout designed especially for students with lots of helpful contact details you can reference.
We also have a bespoke online portal called Zen Den, designed by The Know, which offers resources and links to support the OSFC community.
We know World Mental Health Day 2020 is just one day, and for many of us ensuring our mental health is as positive as possible is an ongoing process. However, WMHD provides an opportunity to check in with your wellbeing and reach out to your friends to see how they’re really doing, past that text they sent saying they’re ‘fine’. Remember, our daily lives have changed considerably as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic but there are always channels of support you can access in and outside of college, all year round.