Self Care During COVID-19

All Things Social Emotional at Addison MS/HS

Staying Happy and Healthy

Over the past month, so much has changed in our world. It is completely normal to experience all kinds of feelings during this confusing time.

Common Reactions to COVID-19:

  • excited to be out of school
  • sad not to see teachers or friends
  • disappointed about events being canceled
  • worried about what will happen next
  • bored at home
  • frustrated, annoyed, or irritable
  • concerns about relatives
  • confused

Even though it can be hard to deal with, there are steps that you can take to make things easier on yourself. This newsletter has suggestions about healthy ways you can take care of yourself.

I miss you all very much, and I am looking forward to being able to see your smiling faces in the hallways again! In the meantime, the best way to get in touch with me while we are away from the school building is through email: I check this daily, and I am typically able to respond quickly. Another option for non-urgent issues (do you remember the 3 Hurts?) is to fill out the "Request to Speak with the Behavior Specialist" form. Even though we don't get to see your smiling faces in the hallway right now, we are all still available to help.

If, however, you or one of your loved ones is experiencing an emergency, please seek help immediately using the Resources for Teens listed below.

Stay Healthy! Stay Happy!

Ms. Monica Flores

Mrs. Ashley Davis

Resources for Teens

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:

Crisis Text Line:
text VOICE to 20121

Disaster Distress Helpline:
1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746

National Child Abuse Hotline:

SELF CARE for Teens

These 5 simple tips can help you live a happier healthier life during this stressful time. These same suggestions are being shared with your parents and family members, so please take some time to talk about them at home. Surely this is not the first or last time you have ever felt worried and stressed out, so these are tips that can help you now but also in the future as you face other times of hardship. By learning this now, you are developing the skills you need to face diversity and stay resilient! Take some time to review each tip, then click on the videos below for some fun ideas about how to incorporate this into your own life.

1. Be kind to yourself. Everyone is experiencing some form of loss right now--cancelled plans, lost time with loved ones, loss of support from close friends or teachers, financial loss, and perhaps even the loss of a loved one. It is so important to be kind and patient with yourself during this difficult time. Recognize and name the emotions that you are experiencing. Check-in with yourself, just like you would for a friend. Give yourself permission to feel your feelings, whatever they may be. And remember to treat yourself the way you would treat your best friend! Kindness and compassion toward yourself is never selfish!

2. Be present. Take breaks from watching the news, browsing your social media, or reading news stories about the pandemic. Being fed constant information about distressing events can be upsetting and detrimental. This can be tricky, but make conscious efforts to put your phone down and be PRESENT and INTENTIONAL with your family.

3. Practice deep breathing. Mindful breathing exercises, doing yoga, or meditating can have positive impacts on your health and can boost serotonin and dopamine levels in your brain, which helps to promote happiness. There are so many fun videos to help you learn this technique--check out the one I posted below, and feel free to share any that you might find helpful yourself.

4. Pay attention to JOY. It can be hard to notice good experiences when we are in the midst of such significant stress. But by focusing on joyful experiences and practicing gratitude, you can significantly elevate your mood! Recognize the things in your life that are going well--start by listing 3 things that you are grateful for in this moment. By modeling this simple strategy, you are subtly encouraging your friends and family members to stay positive too--Joy is contagious!

5. Connect with others. Although we should not be connecting with others physically, technology such as FaceTime, Facebook Messenger, Zoom, etc. can all help to keep you connected to your friends and family. I would love to set up a time to chat with you in the coming weeks. Please shoot me an email with your availability, and I will do my very best to accommodate. I sure miss you all!

One of the greatest joys of my job here in Addison is working alongside a community of students, teachers, staff, and parents who are committed to taking care of one another, especially now! I have witnessed so much kindness and support in our small town that my heart just feels full! As always, if you feel concerned about the emotional stability of yourself or a friend, it is important to seek support. Above, you will find that there are several crisis response phone numbers available to help during urgent times of need. Please do not ever hesitate to reach out to myself or any of our staff members for additional support or questions. We are here to help, and we will continue to RISE BY LIFTING OTHERS!

Stay Healthy! Stay Happy!

Ms. Monica Flores

Secondary Behavior Specialist

Addison Community Schools

Active Relaxation: Deep Breathing (Stress Management Plan for Teens)
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Being Kinder to Yourself | The Science of Happiness