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Wellness Center to host Self-Care Week before final exams

Dylan Zou

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Members of Sources of Strength prepare "encourage-mints" that will be handed out the day before finals begin. These treats are attached to encouraging messages to support students in their testing endeavors, following a week of physical and mental care from Self-Care Week. Photo by Dylan Zou.

Members of Sources of Strength prepare “encourage-mints” that they will hand out the Monday after Self-Care Week. Encouraging messages are attached to these treats to support students in their testing endeavors. “We are making encourage-mints because something small can go a long way, especially during finals week,” said Kristina Im, a member of Sources of Strength. Photo: Dylan Zou

Since finals season can be very stressful for some students, the Palo Alto High School Wellness Center will be sponsoring Self-Care Week from Dec. 11-15 to help students de-stress before finals; activities range from yoga to encourage-mints provided by Sources of Strength.

According to Elizabeth Spector, the mental health and wellness coordinator at Paly, this year’s Self-Care Week will be unlike those from years past.

“This year is unique in that we are holding activities every day leading up the week of finals with a focus on promoting self-care, relaxation, nutrition, sleep hygiene and overall mental and physical health,” Spector said.

According to Spector, some of these activities occurred last year, but there never was a full week-long lineup of activities.

“We recognize that finals can be a stressful time for students and we really want to encourage students to take care of themselves during this time,” Spector said. 

Self-Care Week will kick off with “Choose to Snooze” on Monday, Dec. 11. Students will have the opportunity to learn strategies that improve sleeping habits, as well as the chance to participate in giveaways, according to Spector. 

Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s events consist of do-it-yourself bath salts, pet therapy, and winter card writing. According to Spector, the cards created during winter card writing will be given to local organizations like the Ronald McDonald House, whose mission statement is to “[Keep] families with sick children together and near the care and resources they need,” according to its website

Thursday and Friday will close off the week with physical care. Thursday will feature a soup bar sponsored by the Parent-Teacher-Student Association to help students focus on nutrition. Self-Care Week will finish with yoga in the Media Arts Center on Friday.

According to Kristina Im, a member of Sources of Strength, the Sources team will be distributing “encourage-mints” the Monday before finals begin. These treats come with positive messages to give mental support to students.

“Students operate at their best academically when their minds and bodies are healthy and well-rested,” Spector said.

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