Imagine a very huge oak tree. It has many purposes. To provide shade for people, rest, home and protection for some animals. But even though the oak tree is so resourceful, it has to stand up to the earth’s natural elements such as the wind, sun & rain. Many of the limbs will sway, bend and some may almost seem to break. But once the wind died down, the oak tree has the tremendous ability to return to its upright position. The strength of the tree, though tested by the daily challenges of life, because of its firm roots that are deeply planted in the ground, stand strong and sturdy and continue to be the purposeful tree that it was created to be. I see you as that oak tree.
Life is not without adversities and challenges. This pandemic has proven to be one of the most difficult seasons, that even the strongest of us has had to learn new coping strategies in order to survive.
The fact that you are still here, healthy and strong, means that you are an overcomer. This does not mean that we are going to ignore the fact that we will be confronted with challenges.
The fact that you are still here, healthy and strong, means that you are an overcomer.Dr. Ruthlyn McLarty
A major obstacle for students, is related to academic stress and distress as you try to navigate your way through what is now deemed the new normal, of Online Learning. Sad to say that, academic stress and distress, if not managed properly, can result in serious mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety and even suicidal thoughts and actions.
What is depression?
Depression is not a weakness or something that can be overcome with willpower. It is a mental disorder.
- It affects how we think, feel and behave.
- It can cause emotional, functional and physical problems.
- It can have serious consequences and requires long-term treatment.
- For most teens, depression symptoms ease with treatment such as medication and psychological counseling.
What are some of the ways I can help myself?
- Tell yourself, it is not your fault.
- Understand that you are not alone.
- Take steps to control stress, increase resilience and boost self-esteem to help handle issues when they arise.
- Reach out for friendship and social support, especially in times of crisis.
- Get treatment at the earliest sign of a problem to help prevent depression from worsening
- Maintain ongoing treatment, if recommended, even after symptoms let up, to help prevent a relapse of depression symptoms. Build resilience.