College is an exciting time for most students. However, students face many complex changes, such as social pressure to conform to everyone with alcohol and drugs, imposter syndrome, a lack of sleep, a lack of quality exercise and nutrients, and problems with maintaining a work-life balance. We’ll cover four unique ways to improve your mental health in college.
1. Consider Getting an Emotional Support Animal
An emotional support animal helps relieve or reduce the symptoms of an emotional or mental health condition like depression, anxiety, or PTSD. All you need to do is have a licensed mental health professional write an ESA letter for you and register your pet through a service like https://www.esaregistration.org/.
Due to the Fair Housing Act and Rehabilitation Act of 1974, universities must allow emotional support animals into their dorms and school housing. The housing board is obligated to let emotional support animals offer therapy for people with need companionship and affection with their mental health condition.
According to the HUD, the accommodation laws for emotional support animals range from both public and private housing to their place of education.
2. Give Counseling a Try
The counselors on campus can help you work through and manage various mental health issues related to academics and the social life of a college student. Best of all, counseling services are already part of your college tuition.
What’s great about counseling is that it’s entirely confidential, meaning you won’t have to worry about what others might think of you for seeking help. Campus counselors must abide by a code of ethics where they must keep an open mind and treat everyone fairly.
Whether you have a conflict with a friend or dealing with a lot of stress from your mid-term exams, a campus counselor can help to alleviate your frustrations.
3. Join a Club
One way to improve your mental state is to join a club at school. There are many clubs, such as the Dance Team, Robotics, Student Government Association, and more. You might be able to build your own club.
Many students also enjoy Greek life, where they build long-lasting friendships and a newfound brotherhood or sisterhood. These people can be a support system to help you when times are difficult.
4. Look into Volunteer Options
There’s no better feeling than to help those in need. College and university students have many options for volunteering, such as getting involved in charities, tutoring, campus events, and more. Volunteering can provide a sense of purpose and change your outlook on life.
Helping others redirects your focus and negative thought patterns in a positive direction. This shift in perspective allows you to see the bigger picture and realize there are more important things than your own problems. Helping others lets you focus on serving others and the good feeling that comes with it.
Wrapping It Up
While college can be a highly stressful time, you’ll find unique programs and features available through campus services. Pursue healthy ways to support your mental health, such as seeing a counselor, visiting the tutoring center, joining a club, or giving counseling another shot.