Month: August 2020

Get ready to “flex”

MTU Flex is the university’s plan for returning to campus and responding to any future disruptions that might be caused due to COVID-19. Part of MTU Flex includes surveillance testing. At any point this semester you might volunteer for testing.  If you decide to quarantine or need to quarantine due to suspected close contact, be prepared to “flex” anytime and reduce your stress by knowing:

On-Campus

  • Quarantining individuals may have meals delivered to dorms
  • Listen to your RA regarding protocols for using necessary public spaces, such as restrooms and showers. 
  • Keep your professors informed on what is going on. Tune in virtually if possible, and if not be sure to contact deanofstudents@mtu.edu for approval on an excused absence. 
  • If you’re looking for ways to stay active while quarantining, check out the archived “Daily Workout” stories on the MTU Wellness instagram page (@mtu_wellness). 
  • Stay connected with the Center for Student Mental Health and Well-being’s groups, workshops, and Husky Hour sessions!
  • Student Leadership & Involvement and the Center for Diversity & Inclusion often offer fun or thoughtful virtual events.  Check in with each to see what additional virtual events and resources you can access from your quarantine zone!
  • Additional assistance or questions? Ask your RA.

Off-campus

  • Try to have 2-3 days of food ready to prepare.  Run out of supplies?  Contact Public Safety 906-487-2216 for an Emergency Meal Kit.
  • Talk to your roommates and others you may share necessary spaces with about how to protect each other and prevent possible spread. 
  • Keep your professors informed on what is going on. Tune in virtually if possible, and if not contact deanofstudents@mtu.edu for approval on an excused absence.
  • If you’re looking for ways to stay active while quarantining, check out the archived “Daily Workout” stories on the MTU Wellness instagram page (@mtu_wellness). 
  • Looking to stay connected? Tune in to virtual Husky Hour, groups, and workshops offered by the Center for Student Mental Health and Well-being.
  • Head to Student Leadership & Involvement and the Center for Diversity & Inclusion to see what additional virtual events and resources you can access from your quarantine zone!
  • Additional assistance or questions? Email deanofstudents@mtu.edu or call 906-487-2212

Roll with it.

What will be different? How will my routine be impacted? What can I expect week to week?  These are just a few of the many questions that churned around in my mind while I was preparing to come back to work for the year.  And while I’ve had plenty of questions, I haven’t been met with many answers.  There is so much ambiguity and change in our world right now, so I understand the lack of concrete answers.  However, I still noticed myself becoming anxious, frustrated, and stressed. So with that said, I realized it was time to adapt.

For someone like myself, who likes to plan and be prepared, constant change is maddening.  If you say the word “change” my body immediately reacts like you actually said “chaos”.  Since I know that about myself, I’ve put time and effort into learning how to be flexible and adapt to my surroundings.  #Tenacity, am I right?

Reframing and challenging my thoughts has been crucial in allowing my newfound flexibility to become a lasting change, rather than an effortful, daily focus.  Don’t get me wrong, it still required effort on my part. But now it’s become more like a reminder to myself to embrace my new mindset instead of a more frequent effort to mold and form my thoughts to match the mindset I wanted.

 When it comes down to it, I haven’t changed who I am.  I still love planning and order, and might get a little uneasy at the mention of change.  However, the difference is that change and transition are no longer the enemy.  I don’t see these things as a threat, just waiting to heighten my levels of stress or anxiety like it used to.  Not anymore.  Change and transition can’t control me, because I’ve learned how to “roll” with whatever comes my way. 

I share my own experience with the hopes that it can help someone reading this blog know that they’re not the only one having a hard time with this transition.  I also hope that this might serve as encouragement to lean in to any discomfort you might be feeling and embrace it instead as an opportunity to grow. 

If you’re looking for ways to adapt and overcome some of your own thoughts and reactions related to change and uncertainty, I encourage you to first be present with your thoughts.  Gain an understanding of yourself and any patterns of thinking that may emerge.  Once you have that understanding, you can begin to break each bit down to a more manageable level, and challenge the thoughts for what they are.  This can also be thought of as reframing, which might look like shifting something that might seem negative or scary, finding a way to see it from a new angle, and adjusting the initial thought to a positive outlook or perspective.  After tackling each of these parts, continue to integrate them into your routine and check in with yourself on which areas might need some adjustments. 

The beauty of a growth mindset is that you decide what you want yours to focus on. It’s also a fluid concept, allowing you to alter it when necessary and integrate new ideas or concepts. So here’s to you, the mindset you choose to embrace, and a semester of rolling with whatever comes next!


Making Time for YOU

We all know that when the school year starts in the fall, that things can get hectic. It can be easy to let self-care go by the wayside in order to study for a big test or to get a project finished. So, how can you make sure you are taking care of yourself and making time to regain that energy that you need to get things done in a healthy way? 

A good tip to try is making sure to put time on your calendar for yourself.  It can be easy to fill your calendar with classes and assignments, but sometimes something as simple as putting breaks into your calendar can help you re-establish the importance of those breaks. 

Put down times on your calendar to take care of yourself as well. Time to eat, time to work-out, time to sleep….now we all know that that is an important one but we often do not get enough sleep. 

What’s your favorite hobby or maybe a hobby you would like to try this year, such as kayaking? Put some time on your calendar to make that a reality and do it! 

Take the time to connect with family and friends even if it has to be virtually. Doing all of these things will give you so much more energy back to do the things that you need to get done to be a successful student. 

If you would like to increase your level of happiness and life satisfaction this year, one of the best changes you can make is to find more time in your schedule for a life that reflects what you’d really like to be doing. That balance in life is so important!

For more ideas and reading on this topic, check out this article: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/high-octane-women/201202/why-you-shouldnt-feel-guilty-about-stealing-little-time-yourself