Name: Lori Covey
School: Oklahoma State University
Major: Multimedia journalism
Fav thing about your campus: The people are all so kind and down to earth
Dream Job: Being a reporter for a big publication company in NYC
What is your connection to mental illness?
I connect with mental illnesses in a few different ways. I personally struggle with anxiety and I am also in recovery from an eating disorder. During the time I was struggling the most with my eating disorder, I went through a season of mild depression. I also have family members and friends that struggle with addictions, PTSD, and sexual assault, and I try to support them in any way that I can.
How do you deal with stress from school?
Typically, I do yoga or work out. I try to carve out at least 30 minutes per day for cardio, meditation, stretching or simply laying on my mat and breathing. If I don’t have the energy or time to get sweaty and gross, I often sit at my desk and journal. Writing down my emotions really helps sort them out and destress me.
What does your campus do to help students' mental health?
My campus has a lot of measures in place to help students. Our biggest one is the professional counseling center that is open to all students and faculty. As well as the counseling center we have a “Reboot” center. The reboot center is a quiet room with many different activities and things to destress you. They have beds, books, massage tables, soothing music, video games that help to lower heart rate, workout equipment and much more.
Do you have any school year self-care tips to share with other students?
I would definitely say my biggest tip is to be real with yourself and where you’re at. It’s a lot easier to deal with things when they aren’t in the dark. Be real with yourself and accept the low times. When you do that, then you can start handling them and finding things to bring you out of those seasons. Finding a friend to confide in, picking up a new hobby, or finding an outlet can make a huge difference! Also, don’t take on more than you know you can handle. It’s enough to be in college and deal with mental illness so don’t think if you aren’t the most involved student that you aren’t doing enough. Sometimes over-committing yourself can really bring on more stress than is necessary.