Mental Health Tips: What to Do if Your College Counselor Isn’t Available

A lot of students experience difficulties while they are still in college. It can be pretty hard to balance your social life, studies, and some alone time for yourself. As a result, juggling academic responsibilities and personal obligations can be overwhelming and result in mental health issues in the future. In fact, more than half of students struggle with anxiety in college.

Of course, the majority of educational institutions offer some kind of mental health counseling services to their residents. It’s in the best interests of the school to keep its students happy and healthy! So, in case you feel like you are struggling with your mental well-being, it’s always a good idea to check with your school administration first and look for an in-house counselor.

On the other hand, it’s totally normal when your college counselor is not available. For example, there are too many people in need of help, or they simply don’t have time for everyone. Don’t be afraid to look for help in your time of need! For example, you can delegate your homework to professional paper writer services. Focus on your mental health instead!

So, what can you really do when your college counselor is not available? Here are some tips to help you take care of your mental health during these times.

Reach out to a crisis helpline

This is the first step that people in a mental crisis should do. You need to seek help immediately, and it’s better to do so from a professional, even if your personal counselor isn’t available at the moment. There are many crisis helplines that are available for support, and they often work 24/7. You can connect with a trained professional and receive guidance and support!

Seek support from friends and family

Another good piece of advice for those students who are in crisis is to talk to someone in their social circle. Sometimes, simply talking to your friends or family about your problems can help you gain some perspective and make you feel better until you can get some qualified help. Here are some ideas for you in case you are not comfortable discussing your issues with your family:

  • join an anonymous support group;
  • look for online help resources;
  • find a close friend to talk to;
  • look for other counselors that are provided by your school or campus;
  • ask your friends where they get their support.

Practice self-care

One of the tricks that can help you feel better is knowing when you need help. For example, students need to look for early signs of distress and know how to address them. Scientists say that spending some time in the fresh air can help clear your head and improve productivity. So, try to incorporate some physical activity into your day! 

This can be one of the most effective ways to support your mental well-being when your healthcare counselor is not available for some time. Ideally, self-care should be in your daily routine instead of as an immediate remedy to a crisis. On the other hand, it’s better to try it and have some positive results instead of doing nothing!

Here are some other ideas for your self-care routine that can help you find your balance:

  • create a healthy sleep schedule;
  • eat healthy food instead of fast food and sweets;
  • try to do more physical activity during your day;
  • avoid bad habits, like alcohol and smoking;
  • set healthy boundaries with your family and friends;
  • try meditation between your studying sessions.

Download mental health applications on your phone

This is a huge lifesaver for the younger generation when it comes to their mental well-being. Students are on their phones constantly, so why not use them for good? There are many apps that can help you navigate through difficult times and support your emotional stability. You can even book an online therapy session with a licensed professional instead of your counselor!

Here are some examples of apps that you can use to support yourself during a difficult time:

  • Headspace: it offers guided meditation exercises that can help you with your stress, anxiety, and healthy sleep schedule.
  • Talkspace: This is an online therapy service that connects you with licensed therapists according to your requests. You can send a message to your appointed therapist anytime and anywhere without booking a schedule first.
  • BetterHelp: this is also an online therapy service, which offers to connect you with licensed therapists with the help of video chats, phone, or messaging. You can also reach out to a doctor outside of traditional business hours.
  • Calm: this is an app that offers guided meditations, sleep stories, and breathing exercises. You can use this application as an emergency tool when you can’t connect with your counselor.

Don’t forget to take a break from everything

As it was mentioned before, breaks are very important during your learning process. Just a short 30-minute walk outside can improve your focus and productivity. On the other hand, for some people, 30 minutes might not be enough. Consider taking a whole day off, or even a week! Your grades will recover, and your emotional stability is far more important in this case.

Explore some alternative counseling options

Of course, this tip is not very useful in a moment of crisis or an emergency. On the other hand, if your college counselor is not available to you most of the time, perhaps you should think about exploring some alternative counseling options. For example, your community might offer free or low-cost counseling services. You can look into employee assistance programs as well.

To Sum Up

All students can agree that they should put the highest priority on their mental well-being while they are still in college. This also includes looking for support when you need it the most! While your college counselor is a great tool that will help you navigate through difficult times, this might not be the best option in times of crisis. You should always have a backup plan for yourself!