In order for a structure to be strong, it has to have a good foundation. This is as true for students as it is for buildings. Wellness, including your overall health and well-being, plays a critical role in your academic experience and success at Ohio State. Investing in your foundation of wellness is well worth it!
Practicing Good Wellness
Sleep. You may have the thought of “I can sleep after I get this finished.” In some cases, you may need to get a project, lab report, or paper finished by a rapidly approaching deadline. Sleep deprivation, however, reduces your brain’s ability to function (e.g. concentration, memory, and critical thinking skills). Sleep is when your brain recharges itself and refreshes your neural pathways so they are stronger and able to function efficiently.
Eat. Food is our biological machine’s fuel to function. Without eating well-balanced meals, your body lacks the appropriate nutrition to function. Plan time to refuel. You wouldn’t drive a car or fly an airplane without fuel, or ride a bike with a rusty chain. You have to maintain your body so that you can work effectively, both inside and outside the classroom.
Exercise. Engage in some form of activity that gets you out of a chair and moving around. Just as your entire body needs fuel to work, it also needs to be utilized. Tires that don’t get used eventually get dry rot and fall apart. Muscles are similar in that, if they are not moving, they lose strength. Exercise is also a great way to manage stress, as it increases your endorphins, which improves your mood.
Break Up Your Schedule. As college students, you tend to have a full schedule consisting of all the places we have to be and all the things we have to do. While it’s great to be on top of school work, it is also important to break up the amount of time you are doing it. This allows your brain to recharge. For every 45-55 minutes of work, should spend about 5 minutes of physical activity or movement to give your brain a break. Or, try a 2-hour window of work with a 15-minute break. Use your judgment based on what your workload entails and what works best for you!
Manage Stress. As an engineering student, managing stress is the most important factor of your wellness. There are many resources available to you on campus and digitally that can help you relax and reduce stress and anxiety so you can be more focused.
Get Back to You. Being a college student takes up so much of our time and our identity that we sometimes forget who we are outside of being a student. Think about the relationships you have and what has been important to you. Things to consider are old hobbies that have gotten away from you, creative outlets you used to enjoy, spiritual or faith practices that have slipped a bit, anything that reminds you of you beyond being a student. Spend some time getting reacquainted with who you are and were.
Utilize Your Friends. Talk to one another. Check in and ask how your friends are doing. Share with them how you are doing. Everyone is feeling some level of stress and can relate to each other.
Looking for more ways to improve your wellness? Check out any of these resources across campus designed to support you and your experience.
S.M.A.R.T. (Stress Management & Resiliency Training) Lab: The S.M.A.R.T. Lab offers free individual and small group resiliency training and stress management.
Student Wellness Center: The Student Wellness Center seeks to support and empower students in achieving balance in their life and offers a number of services related to nutrition, substance use, wellness coaching, HIV testing, and financial coaching to name a few.
Counseling and Consultation Service: Counseling and Consultation Service provides a menu of resources to all enrolled students at The Ohio State University. From brief walk-in consultation appointments, drop-in workshops addressing anxiety and stress management, to individual, couples, and group counseling and connecting with mental health/community providers, CCS offers support to all enrolled students and assist in identifying the right type of support for students.
- Let’s Talk: This is a free and confidential drop-in informal consultations on a first-come, first served basis that lasts about 15-20 minutes, and is held every Thursday from 6-8pm at the Multicultural Center at the Ohio Union. Multi-lingual services available during certain days in English, Mandarin Chinese, Cantonese Chinese, Korean, Hindi, and Spanish. Check out our schedule for more information.
- Drop-In Workshops: CCS offers a number of free, drop-in workshops daily throughout the week at Younkin Success Center, Lincoln Tower, and North Campus where you can learn new skills to manage stress.
- Phone Screenings: This is a way to talk with a counselor and get an idea of supports that are available to you, whether it’s accessing individual counseling at CCS or within the community. You can get started by scheduling a phone screening online.
- Community Provider Database: Sometimes a concern needs longer and more frequent treatment than what CCS is designed to offer. As such, we have gathered a list of community providers and created a searchable database that students can use to identify a mental health provider in the community based on student preferences, such as gender, sexual orientation, religion, and insurance, including the Student Health Insurance.
- OSUCCS is a free smartphone application that provides self-help resources that may be beneficial to you while you wait.
RUOK is a free smartphone application developed by Suicide Prevention at The Ohio State University. It provides resources that may be beneficial should depressive feelings get worse and you have thoughts to end your life.