Staff Ed: Self-care important now more than ever


Malik Jaiteh

Watching movies, reading, and crafting are popular methods of self care that students turn to this pandemic.


As the COVID pandemic rages throughout the world, mental health and morale continue to worsen as we attempt to return to normalcy. Young people are strongly affected by the stress the pandemic has created. Students especially struggle to deal with the virus and all the stress that it has caused–on top of schoolwork, sports, attempting to have even a small portion of social life. With a seemingly never-ending war between us and the virus, self-care is more important than ever.

Quarantine, hybrid school, suspended sports, and minimal social lives have only increased the anxiety as we continue to live in uncertainty. Many adolescents have limited contact with friends and feel isolated. It is even worse for those with preexisting mental health conditions. According to the Mayo Clinic, those with preexisting mental health conditions are affected even more, as the isolation and anxiety become too much to handle.

BSM students are struggling, too–seasonal depression is worsened by the pandemic, and feelings of loneliness during the dark winter months are higher than ever.

Through these months of reporting during COVID-19, the Knight Errant has spoken to multiple people about their struggles with mental health. We’ve also learned about a number of preventative methods to help people through these times.

Students recommend that we listen to music to take care of ourselves. Allow yourself a few minutes to slip away from the world, and just immerse yourself in the song. Pick whatever makes you feel better at the moment. Of course, there are many other methods: reading, crafting something, watching too much Netflix. Once again, your mental health is all about doing healthy activities that make you feel better.

Although it may sound silly, going outside really does help. If you’re morally opposed to winter walks, try some outdoor activities. Ice skating, pond hockey, bonfires, and other cold-weather activities are a great way to lift your spirits–especially if you get some friends to join you.

If the stress gets too extreme, reach out to friends and family. Rest assured, you’re not alone–most of us are struggling with feelings of depression or sorrow that we’ve never experienced before. Find common ground, talk through the issues, and seek improvement. If you feel stuck, don’t forget about the wonders of therapy. Now more than ever, we have to recognize as a school that speaking with a therapist or counselor is nothing to be ashamed of. It helps a lot of people–and remember, we have clinical therapists right inside of our school willing to talk.

And if there seems to be no one else there for you, remember that you have a community at this school. Your teachers are here to support and help you; we have groups and clubs for people who want a place to fit in. We have to come together during this hard time. We have to support each other like our friends support us. If you think there’s no one out there, no one at all, never forget this: the Knight Errant loves you.

If you or anyone you know is struggling right now–for any reason–please reach out to someone.
National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
National Alliance on Mental Illness Hotline: 1-800-950-6264
National Substance Abuse Hotline: 1-800-662-4357