Tools to help you
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Mindfulness Reflections for Incoming College Students

By Karsten Friske

You did it! You have been accepted to college! Now what? In this period of time between starting classes, it is entirely understandable to be filled with mixed emotions of excitement and nervousness. Making an investment in your mental health now can help prepare you for the exciting and challenging experiences ahead of you in the near future. 

Why mindfulness? Mindfulness involves increasing your emotional awareness about what you are feeling in your body and how the external world impacts those feelings. Mindfulness can be practiced in a number of ways, but these techniques and questions can be applied and practiced immediately.

1. Practicing body scan mindfulness. Knowing how you are feeling in the moment is key to understanding whether a change of direction is needed.

Reflection question…

When a stressful situation approaches, ask yourself the question, “where exactly am I feeling this stress in my body?” Pinpointing the areas where you feel stress can help you target the causes behind these feelings.

2. Recognizing Control
You made it into college through taking control of your actions that led to positive outcomes with your grades, relationships, and skills. Not every situation requires or benefits from your control though and understanding the difference can help alleviate stress and produce gratitude. 

Reflection question…

What situations are within your control that are contributing to this stress? If you cannot change the situation, how can I change my approach to it?

3. Begin identifying triggers. Creating self-awareness will help you to make informed decisions on your behavior and bring clarity to the impact of your decisions.

Reflection question…
What words, phrases, or actions contribute to my mood? When did these responses start to bother me and do I want them to continue having control over my life?

4. Build mindfulness into your daily routine! 

Developing mindfulness practices are an important step in the journey toward better understanding your emotions. 

Reflection question…

What do you want to get out of this unique season of life? What does an ideal transition into college look like for you?

To continue your journey, therapy allows for more personalized attention to develop skills as you enter college. All of the therapists at the Pursuit Counseling have gone through their own college journeys and are ready to walk with you through your college journey. We would be honored to be part of building your toolbox to make your college experience a rewarding experience!

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