The pandemic disrupts not only the way we live but also our mental health. The data we derived from the counseling sessions throughout 2021 shows that most of our students suffer from Social Relationship problems. The campus closure and online classes greatly hinder the students’ needs for interaction, communication, and relationship development. This lacking of human interaction and demands from academic activities seemingly affect the mental health of university students all over the globe.
I recently stumble across an Instagram post from Standford Muslim Mental Health & Islamic Psychology (MMHIP) that offers a holistic view on mental health. Standford MMHIP states that ideal health requires a balance between :
- Physical Well-being
- Mental Well-being
- Emotional Well-being
- Social / Behavioral Well-being
- Spiritual Well-being
Physical Well-being is the absence of illness and the ability to perform physical activities without any difficulties. This state of wellbeing is achieved through a healthy diet, regular exercise, and sufficient sleep.
Mental Well-being is the ability to regulate ones’ mood/behavior and control stress. Prolonged stress may impact students’ ability to learn. So, learning how to manage stress is a valuable skill especially during the pandemic.
Emotional Well-being involves the ability to respon to both positive and negative emotions such as stress, happiness, anxiety etc. This well-being relates to how one thinks, feels, and responds to external experiences. Daniel Goleman wrote a book called Emotional Quotient (EQ) explaining how one can use and manage their emotion to releive stress, improve communication skills, overcome challenges, and defuse conflicts.
Social – Behavioral Well-being revolves around one’s ability to interact and communicate with others. All those online classes and meetings affect our basic needs of real human interaction. Despite the advanced technology nowadays, we’re still longing for the good old human interaction.
Spiritual Well-being relates to spiritual awareness and finding inner peace through performing spiritual activities, such as prayer, meditation, doing good deeds, remembrance of God etc.
To conclude, in order to be able to “survive” the disruption of life due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students have to live in harmony. This means that students should learn how to balance the six well-being in their daily life. Start small and be consistent, that’s the only way to build a good habit of life.