Eastern Michigan University’s Women’s Resource Center held a Self-Love Workshop on Thursday, Oct. 12 to teach fun and easy ways to take care of yourself mentally and physically. It was the third event of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
The WRC has plenty of programs, workshops and discussions on concepts related to domestic violence in the upcoming weeks called Healthy Relationships, DV & Reproductive Justice and Communication Styles.
The workshop, running from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., had six tables, each with a different activity. There were do-it-yourself face scrubs, a coloring station, self-care inventory checklists, time management worksheets, a Henna station, and a station to write love letters to yourself. It was an open workshop for anybody to come and go as they please – there were as many as 15 people at a time in the room at different stations.
Special events coordinator for the WRC Mindy Holmes and major event programmer, Sanyu Lukwago partnered together to plan the event.
“I want them to learn the importance of self-care and to learn just the importance of their own existence,” Holmes said. “I know it sounds really cheesy, but I just want people to come and love on themselves because it can be really hard and people can just forget.”
According to Amherst College’s website, college students don’t prioritize self-care. When students feel overwhelmed and stressed, self-care is the last thing that’s on their mind.
Shelby Hallenbeck is a second year full-time graduate student and a graduate assistant for a Writing 120 course. She said she was experiencing stress from her responsibilities and decided to attend the workshop after finding it on the EMU calendar.
“Think of yourself as a cup, if you let it overflow it’s just going to get worse… and once it overflows, it’s like you’re past the point of no return,” Hallenbeck said. “It can lead to breakdowns if you don’t take care of yourself.”
Active Minds is a nonprofit organization to empower students speaking out about mental health issues. According to Active Minds’ website, mental health issues are prevalent in college students, sometimes impacting abilities to succeed. Almost one third of all college students report having felt so depressed that they had trouble functioning.
Sarah Lemke, a junior majoring in occupational therapy at EMU, came to the workshop because she is part of the VISION Volunteer Center. It is one of the four centers of diversity and community involvement, which also includes the Center for Multicultural Affairs, LGBT Resource Center and the Women’s Resource Center. They often support each other in their events and programs.
Lemke referred to her self-care as “on the back burner all the time.” She said she’s happy the workshop provides quick ways to care about yourself “on your own time.”
Candice Crutcher, a student programmer for the Center for Multicultural Affairs, said her self-care method is doing her hair or reading a book. She looks forward to the upcoming Healthy Relationships event because “a lot of people don’t realize what a healthy relationship is and what’s normal and what’s not normal.”
Healthy Relationships is the upcoming event on the Domestic Violence Awareness Month calendar, and it will be on Oct. 16 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. in room 320 of the Student Center.