College is stressful. I think we can all agree on that. It's hard to find time for ourselves, and not for studying, or jobs, or friends. And while all of those things can be wonderful, we need to remember to take time for ourselves.
What happens when it's been so long since you've taken a mental health day? Where do you start?
Well, for one thing, you can make a self care kit.
The concept is simple, really: you compile everything that makes you happy or relaxed in one place (preferably a box or tote of some kind), and tada! You have your kit!
It's a very broad task, so here is how I made mine (as seen in the cover photo).
First, I took a simple, somewhat small tote.
The size doesn't really matter-- as long as it is big enough for what you want to put in, you're all set. Make sure to give it a label so that you can find it no matter what, or, better yet, a friend or loved one can find it for you if you ever have a day where you need help functioning, the kind of day where you don't want to leave bed.
Next, put in a journal and pen.
I'm a writer--what can I say? Writing is a great way to temporarily separate yourself from your feelings, whatever they may be. You can write down your anger, your sadness, your confusion, close a cover or rip up the paper, and poof! It's almost as if the problem isn't there, or isn't too much.
Next, add something to ground yourself with.
While I do have a list of grounding techniques in my box (they are very easy to find online), something else that I've been doing to combat my bad moods and anxiety has been via a gift from a coworker. This is my worrystone.
For you, this kind of item may be a piece of jewelry, a beloved stuffed animal-- something to hold and calm yourself with. If you can, put it in the box, or close by, so that you're always ready.
Now the comfort items are next.
From favorite movies...
To your favorite kind of tea/beverage...
To simple feel good items, like a spa mask...
This can be the best part, because this fully encompasses the TREAT YO'SELF attitude, which, when you have a bad day, you deserve to find happiness in the little things!
And there you have it! You can easily customize your kit, as long as you keep yourself in mind. It may be hard some days, but trust me, if you are treating yourself well, the whole world will take note, and hopefully follow.
Keep your chin up, and know that you can always help yourself, even via little things, and that you deserve it!