The Planned Acts of Kindness Club kicked off its Mental Health Speaker Series on Thursday, February 11, with a stress reduction and management techniques talk. The presenters were Foothill College Wellness Coordinator Zaina Hamid, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Lisa Slede as well as their wellness student ambassadors Athenais Mortier and Raven Hayes.
The presentation outlined practical ways individuals can help those around them cope with mental health struggles. Letting others know that you’re present when they need it is one of the proposed strategies. This can be done effectively through following the QPR suicide prevention method: question, persuade and refer. Questioning is allowing the individual to open up and asking them to voice their feelings; persuading is offering professional resources and encouraging them to seek help; and referring is specifically taking the actions to guide them toward help and introducing them to the professionals.
Slede noted that it’s sometimes easy to overlook personal needs, and that “our brains are often wired to stick to the negative.” People subconsciously forget about the positive parts of the day, so Slede’s tip is to make a conscious effort to take in something good for about 25–30 seconds two to three times a day. She also recommends partaking in activities like yoga, mindfulness, meditation and positive affirmations, as well as taking naps to recharge and going outside to help balance mental health in day-to-day life.
The next talk in the series led by LAHS teacher and certified yoga instructor Jodi Hwang is scheduled for Thursday, March 4. This upcoming presentation will focus on mindfulness practice. To sign up, visit this link.
To learn more about Foothill College’s research, advice and wellness resources, visit this link.