Welcome to the fall term, Riverhawks! As we all come back from working or learning remotely, we may feel a bit more tense when those Sunday evenings hit. Check out this article below from AACC counselor, Letha Valiaveedu.
As we are all returning back to campus and to different routines, you may be feeling nervous and apprehensive, especially on Sunday evening or the day before your weekly routine begins. Or you may notice another range of emotions as well, such as excitement, fear, relief, sadness, numbness, gratitude, thrill, empathy, etc. Do not ignore your feelings! All these emotions are valid and a normal response to adjusting to a new routine for the new academic year 2021-2022.
It is important to take notice on how your needs may have changed over the last 18 months. And to be aware that what you have needed before may look differently as you adjust to being on campus again. Take inventory of your overall wellness and your physical, emotional, mental, environmental, financial, cultural, and spiritual needs.
We encourage you to use healthy, self-care strategies during this time of transition. Self-care strategies can differ for every person. Here are some coping skills that could be helpful for you: meditation, deep breathing, exercise, staying connected with family and friends, getting outside, journaling, creating art, making a mental health playlist, and taking social media breaks.
As we return to campus, try to familiarize again with the campus, your commute, and setting up a routine. Your time management will be different now. Give yourself time to get dressed for campus, as well as time to commute and get physically to campus and classes. In addition, your sleep routine may need some adjustment as well. Be patient with yourself as you develop a new sleep and daily routine.
You may be also nervous about interacting with people in-person. Try slowly easing your way into social interactions, and plan for a mix of virtual and in person activities. Communicate your needs clearly and set boundaries when needed. Give yourself permission to say “no” when you need to.
Remind yourself we are all navigating this new time of reopening and returning back to campus together. It is okay for things to look differently from one person to the next.