Mental Health is one of the major topics that people experience a lot of, but do not talk about enough. Mental disorders/illnesses are a spectrum of different conditions that affect our mood, our way of thinking and our behavior. During the wintertime, we have colder weather and dimmer sunlight, which tends to affect our moods. This time of year is a bit different because we have the wintertime combined with a pandemic that has made times hard for some people.

Ever felt sad for practically no reason on a rainy and gloomy day?  With the significant reduction of sunlight during the winter months, it throws your body off of what time it actually is, and leads to you feeling sad or depressed. This is called Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Since March when the pandemic started, students have had a lot to bear mentally, and there has been slight concern on how students are doing in the winter with everything going on. With so much to think about, from classes, the vaccine, to the new strand of coronavirus floating around, it’s vitally important that students are taking care of their mental health.

A lot of students claimed it has been hard to focus, and that juggling school with their personal life has been hard. Becca Keaton, a junior at Indiana State, said, “it’s been literally awful, I cannot focus on a single assignment, right now it all feels like too much. Another student, Derryea Williams, acknowledged she gets seasonal depression every winter. She states, “my performance in school seems to decrease around this time of year, but nothing too dramatic. Can’t afford to be failing out.” She states even though she’s aware of her mental health, she has to remind herself to get it together to push through.

On the other hand, freshman LaJuane L. Williams stated that this semester has been a little fun, with “being reunited with campus friends, but I feel like it’s a little exhausting (with getting used to being back in class on campus). Although it was very hectic first semester it has calmed down a little bit which I like. I see improvements being made to the school and environment and I’m a little happy.”

Overall students seem to be well aware of either how good or bad their mental health status is, but all seem to want to improve themselves in order to be better student. We know that during the pandemic that quarantine may decrease your desire to do things, but the psychology/counseling department advises to keep yourself busy with a daily routine. Don’t get too indulged with social media, and to give your mind a break. Take time to yourself to relax and breathe; the winter won’t be here for too much longer!