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Mind Matters: Volunteers Talks on Mental Well-being


What Is the Meaning of Mental Health?

Mental health is like trying to assemble IKEA furniture without the instructions—confusing, frustrating, and sometimes you end up with a wonky bookshelf. It’s a wild roller coaster ride through the amusement park of your emotions, where the line for the “Chill Coaster” is always longer than you’d like.

Now, imagine mental health as a sitcom. You’re the main character, but sometimes the scriptwriter throws in unexpected plot twists just to keep things interesting. Cue the laugh track when you realize your brain has its stand-up routine, and you’re the unwitting audience.

And then there are those unsung heroes who waltz into the sitcom of your mind with a bag of popcorn and a supportive smile. They’re like the guest stars who offer valuable insights and maybe even a cameo appearance in the credits. Picture them as the wise neighbors who drop by with metaphorical cookies and a listening ear when your mental plot line gets a bit too dramatic.

While our volunteers have diverse perspectives about mental health, we asked them to share their ideas and advice.


Youssef’s Insight: I’ve seen a lot of discussions on the social media and forums about mental health , but I have no idea about how its like going through this mental problems, from what i know , it seems to be closely connected to one’s mindset . for example , a person who remains inactive in life all the day just in his room , might be more prone to mental health issues , whereas someone who stays busy may be less likely to experience such mental problems.

Julija’s Experience: What worked for me when I was having depression symptoms (not saying depression because I was never diagnosed) was going out of the house and actively doing things, like hanging out or also like right now going to work. Of course, there are days where I prefer staying inside and just do nothing, but I needed a good balance of both.

Diana’s Perspective: I am not facing homesickness personally, but I think that the best thing to deal with it is cooking something you’re used to eating at home or looking around for similarities. I was getting scared about leaving in the last weeks before departing, so I started to think about all the things that will always remain the same everywhere: a tree is always a tree, the roads are all the same, the sky is there for everyone. Even if far from home, you can still lie on the bed and look at your hands; your fingers are not gone, your skin may be tanned or more pale, but it’s still there. And if you listen without paying attention to the language, the voices of the people and the laughter of the children outside the window will remind you of the voices of neighbors you heard from your flat. Just think about it: the world is still the same, a place is just a place; the important thing is the people, the emotions, and the experience. And your house is there waiting for you; you didn’t leave it, you just decided to take a little more time to get back there. If you think of it this way, it is not different from a long holiday or a long school trip; it is just a “see you later,” not a “goodbye.” – Diana

Camile’s Take on Mental Health: For me, mental health is as much about looking after mind as it is about looking after our bodies. It’s clear that it’s important to take time for yourself, to reflect, and to stay calm if that’s what you need. But in my personal practice I think it’s also important to do it intelligently. What I mean by this is to keep an active physical and social rhythm. Even if time for reflection with ourselves is essential, we must not sink into a logic of overwhelm where we do nothing. That’s why I usually (try to) discipline my mind. If it’s a complicated time, I have to force myself to remain active all the same, on my own or with other people. And that can be in the form of various activities, sport, just going out, or even at home, reading, drawing, cooking. It doesn’t matter as long as we’re not just spectators of ourselves.

Vincent’s Insights on Being Abroad: In my opinion, being abroad and far from home has an impact on my mental health, both in a positive and challenging aspect. Overall, I am trying to be aware of my feelings as much as possible and to take care of myself.

Here are my ways to handle my mood and mental health:

  • I try to always listen to myself and be aware of my emotions. I am also doing my best to accept my feelings, even when they are negative.
  • I like to go on walks and listen to music and podcasts. Being active and eating things I like very much are part of my way to feel good.
  • Finally, I am trying my best to break my routine and experience new things from time to time.

Carolina’s Tips: Things I do to improve my mental health while far from home:

  • Listen to music and dance
  • Going for a walk and exploring different places
  • Stay in contact with family and friends
  • Going out and socializing
  • Meet new people
  • Practice gratitude every day

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This week let’s raise awareness about Mental Health ! Discover that there is no small actions to take care of your mental health 🙌 #campaign #sharingiscaring #notalone #awareness #volunteer

♬ The Middle – Jimmy Eat World