As we all know, the last few weeks of the semester can be very stressful. You can find temporary relief and a brief sense of relaxation, however, by simply paying attention to something you do thousands of times each day without ever noticing it—breathing.
All you need to do is momentarily shift your attention away from your thoughts and onto your breath as you take three mindful breaths. This means that you breathe in deeply and slowly through the nose such that your chest raises. Pause briefly, then exhale out of your mouth, making a soft “O” shape with your lips as you empty out your lungs and your chest falls. Repeat this process two more times. This can take perhaps 35-40 seconds to do, depending upon how deeply and slowly you inhale and exhale.
You will find--if you pay close attention—that you feel a mild sense of calm and well-being afterward. This is a simple but significant relaxation tool you have access to any time you need it.
Welcome to the new, updated website for Counseling and Psychological Services. We hope that you find useful information on our site to help you or someone you are concerned about get the mental health support needed. We also have some new features in our Counseling Center, including the use of iPads to check in and a monitor with mental health wellness messaging. The Just In Case app is available on smartphones, so please upload it onto your phone where you will have it anytime you need it. This fall we are promoting the Each Mind Matters campaign, which is a California-wide initiative regarding mental health awareness and the importance of sharing our stories with others. The campaign features a lime green ribbon and we invite you to get a ribbon from us and wear it to support the 1 in 4 Americans who have mental health concerns, as all of us are touched by this issue. October is Mental Health Awareness month—a perfect time for you to join in. We will have all kinds of materials available around campus reminding you that “Each Mind Matters”!