How to deal with mental issues?

By Jade Khieu, Class of 2023

I have never shared about this topic publicly, but after going through hard times myself, I believe that there are also many people out here who struggle with stress, anxiety or depression like me and need help. In this article, I would like to share with you some of the simple methods that I use to cope with these mental problems. And if I could go back in time, I would definitely tell myself to calm down and practice these.

Take a deep breath, eat and sleep well

There were times when I was too stressed with things not going on the right track, I stayed up all nights and didn’t feel like eating. It happened for weeks and ended up not solving any of my problems, also caused some visible health issues like skin breakouts, stomachache or low blood pressure. But after the issues went severe, I realized that even when my mind didn’t want food or sleep, my body still needed it to survive and maintain the lives of my own.

Weariness may take away your appetite, but you can always try to have some of your favorite snacks at least. For sleep, I suggest using ambience music or even meditation before bed. Practicing with your breath also helps ease pains and loosen the tension.

Me-time: go for a walk and into nature

My new favorite spot in the campus for relaxing – lotus pond. Image source: Jade Khieu.

When suffering from anxiety, I tend to lock myself in my room for days (and skip meals), but I’m trying to change that by going out to get some fresh air. Luckily, our campus has several opened green spaces for students to chill and relax so I think it will be a good choice rather than suffocating alone in a small space. Connecting with the nature is also said to be good for mental healing.

Talk to people who care

Sometimes in the past I would avoid contacting other people when in a bad mood. But keeping the negative feelings and thoughts inside is never good for one’s mental health. And I believe that those can grow like a snowball and will run over you one day, so it is recommended to talk to your close ones, like best friends or family members, as long as they are the people you trust and can share with.

Struggling with lots of pressure this semester, not only from schoolwork and finding internship but also from personal issues, I tried to keep it to myself and to be strong, but it felt really heavy on the inside sometimes. I finally vented with my friends and also chatted with peers about my situation. I felt much better learning that I was not alone and some of them were experiencing the same.

Have a treatment plan with the professionals if things are getting out of control

Talking with people is a good way to release stress, but not everyone has enough emotional bandwidth to run with one’s negative discharge. I sometimes regret that I overshare with people who may potentially hurt my feelings. Therefore, learning from my lesson, I would suggest talking to the professionals who can help with a clear and detailed treatment plan. They can vary from on- campus mental counselors to psychiatrists, depending on the seriousness and urgency of your situation.

In Guangfu Campus, mental counseling service is provided in both English and Chinese. You can book an appointment with the counselors of your college/department and even ask them to help you arrange ones who are fluent in English. Each take around 50 minutes but for better healing results, they may suggest you have a long-term plan, like weekly appointments. Information and self-help tools are also available via NYCU Line chatbot – 陽明交大諮心好友.

I used to be afraid of letting people know that I took mental counselling sessions, but now I realize that deciding to help yourself is not something to be ashamed of. If you are feeling unwell, it’s important to seek help and take care of yourself first.

My personal favorites?

As I’m into astrology and tarots, sometimes I would like to use the cards to interpret what happens in my life, or to see what life is trying to tell me. This method may not be suitable for everyone, but it works for me and I think you may give it a try if you have a chance. Another way to wash away the sorrow that I like to use, is using liquid therapy. I’m not trying to romanticize drinking, but it can be fun and relaxing if done responsibly.

Finally, No more mental problems

I understand that adult life is usually filled of pressure and responsibilities, which can be too overwhelming sometimes and cause mental problems. But no matter how each of us has our own ways to deal with them, I hope you know that you are not fighting alone, there are people ready to help you and it’s okay to feel vulnerable.
Stay healthy and take care!