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#RaiseUpGW is dedicated to helping students engage in comprehensive well-being experiences. Learn how you can #RaiseUp all summer long with weekly tips, playlists, and more!

 

Join Student Life at GW on Instagram!

 

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Capital Peer Spotlights

The Capital Peers are peer educators who provide health education and serve as role models for all things health and wellness at GW. Each week, meet a member of the Capital Peers and see how they #RaiseUp over the summer!

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Well-being Wednesdays

Every Wednesday, test your knowledge and learn tips and tricks to engage your well-being!

 

Consider these 5 tips for healthy sleep hygiene.

1. Stick to a consistent sleeping schedule.

  • It is recommended to wake up and go to bed around the same times each day, even on weekends.
  • If you need to refresh, take a nap before 3PM for 30 minutes or less.
  • COVID Consideration:  Establishing a routine can facilitate a sense of normalcy. It’s easier for your mind and body to acclimate to a consistent sleep schedule, including consistent times for waking up, winding down, and turning off the lights.

2. Avoid caffeine later in the day.

  • Maintain a routine that has a work-life balance.  Include even just a few minutes each day of an activity that brings you joy and contentment.

3. Turn off electronics at least 30 minutes before bed.

  • Blue light from your phone or computer screen can delay the release of melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone. This can make it harder to fall asleep.
  • Try using the 30 minutes before bed practice a bedtime ritual (ex. taking a hot shower, reading a book, progressive muscle relaxation).

4. Evaluate your bedroom environment.

  • Ensure that your room is dark, free from distractions, and a comfortable temperature.
  • Reserve your bed for sleep only. Doing homework or studying in bed can make your body associate your bed with working and make it harder to fall asleep at night.

5. Reflect on your sleep quality.

  • Ask yourself:
    • Do I wake up rested? If not, why might this be?
    • What changes can I make to improve my sleep?
  • Sleep issues can be associated with a variety of factors, from medical conditions to mental health concerns. If you need additional support with your sleep habits, consider speaking with a professional in the CHC.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

  • Learn more about how sleep is related to your well-being and find other resources from the Sleep Foundation.
  • Call the CHC at 202-994-5300 to speak to a staff about sleep concerns you might have.
  • Learn more about Raise Up GW and how you can engage in holistic well-being practices as a GW student.

Consider these 5 tips to manage stress as a student.

1. Stay connected with your social supports.

  • Carve out some time in your routine to talk to a friend, family member, faith leader, or other trusted member of your social circle.

2. Establish a routine and stick with it.

  • Maintain a routine that has a work-life balance.  Include even just a few minutes each day of an activity that brings you joy and contentment.

3. Take time to self-reflect and engage in rest.

  • Allow yourself the space to process emotions in a way that works for you. (ex. Journaling, talking to a friend, artistic expression)

  • Consider the value that you place on rest and sleep hygiene practices. Give yourself permission to engage in practices that rejuvenate your mind and body.

  • When facing a setback, consider: What challenges or changes to plans have I faced in the past? What strengths, mindsets, supports, and strategies helped me through those previous times that I can draw on today?

4. Check out the Self-Help Resource Library.

  • These resources can help you acquire the skills, attitudes, and knowledge to resolve personal difficulties and day-to-day challenges.
  • COVID Consideration: CAPS has compiled a list of recommended self-help resources during COVID-19, ranging from podcasts and apps to free and low-cost virtual support.

5. If you find yourself needing additional support, consider reaching out a GW resource.

  • Attend one of CAPS’ Let’s Talk sessions or a Mental Health Discussion Series sessions. No registration required!

  • Call 202-994-5300 to make an appointment with CAPS.

  • If you are concerned about yourself or a friend, submit a CARE Referral to be connected to an appropriate resource on campus.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

Consider these 5 tips to incorporate physical activity into your routine.

1. Find something you love to do.

  • Doing physical activity that makes you feel energized, happy and confident will make you more likely to do it regularly.
  • Movement isn't just one thing! It can be walking, running, biking, stretching, dancing, whatever works for you and your body.

2. Visit Lerner Health and Wellness Center.

  • Lerner, or “HelWell,” is located at 2301 G St NW.
  • It has a variety of equipment, physical activity spaces, a jogging track, a pool, group fitness classes, and more. Experiment with all they have to offer and find a physical activity routine that works best for you!
  • COVID Consideration: During the social distancing period, Lerner will still be offering a variety of virtual programming. Follow @gwcampusrec on Instagram for wellness tips, at-home workouts, fitness resources, virtual activities, and more!

3. Set S.M.A.R.T. goals.

  • Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-bound
  • Remember to also listen to your body and its needs.

4. Remember, exercise is just one way to be physically active!

  • Enjoy some friendly competition through Intramural and Club Sports.
  • Explore the great outdoors on a weekend or extended break trip through the TRAILS program.
  • Take a Lifestyle, Sport, and Physical Activity (LSPA) course, which has topics ranging from hiking to fencing to self-defense!

5. Find little ways to incorporate physical activity into your day.

  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • If you take the metro, consider getting off the train one stop early and walking the rest of the way.
  • Take a walk to the monuments with friends, for an #OnlyAtGW experience!

#RaiseUpGW Resources

Learn more about Lerner Health and Wellness Center.

Learn more about Intramural and Club Sports.

Learn more about Lifestyle, Sport, and Physical Activity (LSPA) courses.

Learn more about the TRAILS program.

Learn more about Raise Up GW and how you can engage in holistic well-being practices as a GW student.

Consider these 5 tips to manage your nutrition as a college student.

1. Avoid skipping breakfast.

  • Try to start your day with something with protein

  • Ex. eggs, yogurt, cottage cheese, nut butters, whole grain carbs

2. Stock up on pantry staples.

  • Pantry staples have a long shelf life and can be used in a variety of recipes! Ex. oatmeal, granola, applesauce, and canned veggies

  • If you have access to a freezer, stock up on frozen fruits and veggies. They last longer and have a high nutrient content.

3. Keep healthy snacks on hand.

  • If you have healthy snacks around, you’ll stay fueled throughout the day and be less tempted to grab something else.

  • Store these snacks where you can grab them easily, such as at your desk during a study session, or at your bedside.

4. Take time to enjoy and savor your food.

  • To make eating feel more like a priority and less like a side task, avoid multitasking while eating.

  • Rather than eating a snack while doing homework or studying, take time to give eating your full attention.

  • COVID Consideration: Listen to and continue to be kind to your body with what you eat. Stock up on non-perishable items to avoid having to leave your unit frequently. Check out GW’s COVID-19 Resource Guide to find grocery stores near campus and GWorld dining partners that offer delivery, takeout, and curbside-pickup.

5. Use the GW Mobile app and the GET app.

  • GW Mobile has a variety of tools to help you plan and budget your meals, find vendors that accept GWorld, and more.

  • The GET app can show you your current GWorld balance and how much you can spend per day given that balance.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

Consider these 5 tips for your sexual health and well-being.

1. Know yourself!

  • Are you interested in sex? If so, what types of sex are you interested in? What are you comfortable with? What are you not comfortable with?
  • Your comfort level, desires, and beliefs surrounding sex may change over time, and that’s okay! Healthy sexuality is about learning and exploration.

2. Be open to talking with your partner(s) about sex.

  • Before getting involved sexually, talk to your partner(s) about what you’re comfortable with. Maintain open communication and respect boundaries.
  • Make sure consent is present before engaging in sex.

3. Prepare to have safer sex.

  • Consider which sexual health barriers you will use. Avoid storing safer sex supplies where they could be damaged (ex. in your wallet, in your car).
  • Use a new barrier every time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.
  • When considering safer sex supplies, think about:
    • How does it fit into your lifestyle?
    • How effective is it at preventing pregnancy?
    • Will it prevent STIs?
    • How much will it cost?
  • COVID Consideration: While COVID-19 is not spread through sex, it is spread through close contact with others.  Limit close contact, including sex, with people outside of your immediate living area. Your safest sex partner is yourself, as masturbation can’t spread COVID-19. Consider other, distanced ways of experiencing sexual pleasure.

4. If you are sexually active, make it a habit to get tested for HIV and STI’s;

  • Every time you have a new sexual partner
  • If you notice any changes in your body
  • If you had sex with someone who has had an STI
  • If you have had sex without a condom

5. Get regular medical care.

  • Be honest with your medical care provider about your sexual health. Ask them if you should be screened for STIs and HIV. 
  • Talk with your health care provider about PrEP and PEP to determine if these are appropriate options for you to prevent HIV.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

These 5 tips can help you holistically engage your well-being all summer long.

  • COVID Consideration: You can comply with social distancing while still getting some summer sun! Try visiting parks near your house or going on short walks to spend time in nature. Be mindful about what locations tend to get crowded at what times.

1. Stay hydrated.

  • Drink water throughout the day, and bring a refillable water bottle with you when you go outside.
  • Consider adding fruits to your water for some flavor, such as lemon or lime.
  • Eat water-rich foods, such as salads and fruits.

2. Protect yourself from the sun.

  • Use sunscreen with SPF 30 or more when spending all or most of the day outside, even on cloudy days!
  • Reapply sunscreen every two hours and after swimming or sweating.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed cap and UV-blocking sunglasses to further protect yourself.

3. Wear insect repellent when outdoors.

  • Use an insect repellent that contains at least 20% DEET, Picaridin, or a natural alternative of your choice.

4. Set aside time to unwind.

  • If you are working a summer job or internship, take 10-minute breaks each hour to take a walk or eat a healthy snack.
  • Carve out some time each day to immerse yourself in an activity that brings you joy.
  • COVID Consideration: If your summer didn't turn out the way you planned, allow yourself to feel that disappointment or frustration. Find ways to process these feelings that work for you. Establish a routine with a balance of work, fun, and self-care.

5. Reflect on your social media use.

  • Remember that social media is a person's "highlight reel," not the full picture.
  • Consider limiting social media to certain times of the day, or setting a limit for how much time you will spend on apps.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

These 5 tips can help you connect with others and strengthen relationships.

1. Create a group chat.

  • Create a group chat with roommates or an existing group of friends to make plans easily.
  • Start a weekly tradition, such as coffee dates or Sunday brunch. This will give you something fun to look forward to each week!

2. Connect outside social media.

  • Find ways to connect that don't involve social media.
  • Ex. calling a friend or family member, playing a board game, cooking or baking together, attending a group fitness class at Lerner
  • COVID Consideration: Try finding different ways to engage in these activities while remaining socially distant. For example, have a movie night using the Netflix Party extension, or do a group workout over Zoom.

3. Experiencing FOMO?

  • If you experience FOMO (fear of missing out) when you scroll through social media, consider taking a break from it altogether.
  • Remember to also cultivate a connection with yourself! Find activities that you enjoy on your own.

4. Join a club or organization at GW.

  • GW has over 500 clubs and organizations surrounding a variety of causes and interests.
  • Join an organization to meet people with similar interests and passions.

5. Attend one of GW's many campus traditions and events.

  • Participate in a campus tradition like Vern Harvest, Midnight Breakfast, or Chalk-In.
  • Give back to the community through the Nashman Center's many service programs.
  • Attend a community or cultural event hosted by the MSSC.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

These 5 tips can reduce the negative impacts of alcohol.

1. Check in with yourself.

  • If you're feeling hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, consider not drinking, as these states can heighten the negative impacts of alcohol.
  • COVID Consideration: It might be tempting to end the day with a glass of wine or a cold beer to unwind, but try limiting drinking to weekends and opting for a non-alcoholic drink during the week.

2. Don't drink on an empty stomach.

  • If you do decide to drink, eat a carb- and protein-heavy meal beforehand.

3. Alternate between alcohol and water.

  • Alcohol causes your body to lose water. Stay hydrated by alternating your drinks with water.
  • Leave a large water bottle by your bedside to drink before you go to sleep.

4. Keep track of how much you drink.

  • The body processes one standard drink per hour.
  • Set a limit beforehand for how much you will drink, and try to avoid drinking games.

Standard Drink Sizes

  • Liquor: 1.5 oz.
  • Wine: 5 oz.
  • Beer: 12 oz.

5. Don't feel like drinking?

  • That's okay! If you don't want to drink but still want to be social, just hold a cup of soda. Nobody will know the difference.
  • If a friend tells you they aren't drinking, offer them a cup of soda or water instead.

#RaiseUpGW Resources

  • Check out upcoming #GWLateNight events on Engage if you're looking for an alcohol-free environment.
  • Learn more about the Collegiate Recovery Community (CRC) designed to support students in recovery from substance disorders and other process addictions.
  • Learn more about Raise Up GW and how you can engage in holistic well-being practices as a GW student.