“Here’s what is truly at the heart of wholeheartedness: Worthy now. Not if, not when, we’re worthy of love and belonging now. Right this minute. As is.” – Brene Brown, “The Gifts of Imperfection”
It’s February: the month of love! Amid the bright pinks and perpetual glitter glue, perhaps we might savor a moment to take a deep breath and retreat within? Valentine’s Day can be filled with the pressure of doting on a romantic partner, and that makes it easy to forget that romantic partnerships are not the only way to experience love. Relationships with oneself, friends and community members can provide a plethora of support, love and affirmation. We don’t need 100 friends, an “Insta-worthy” workout regimen, or “the perfect mindset” to attain connection. All we need is a willingness to show up.
Luckily, here at Mills, there is plenty to show up to during this month of love. Here are some exciting new wellness resources available at Mills this February!
Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) is now forming several specialized groups. “Groups can range from formal group therapy to support groups and workshops. Groups are a research-based modality that is as effective as individual therapy,” CAPS writes in this series of informational slides. CAPS notes that groups work for several reasons, including “[the reduction of] shame and isolation, which are often repercussions of marginalization, trauma, and abuse” and “[increased] awareness of how we show up with others, which will allow us more choice in our lives.” The groups include: BIPOC Anti-Oppression Support Group, Black Healing Circle, Multiracial Group, Parent Support Circle, Trans and Gender Nonconforming (TGNC) Support Circle, and several skills groups, such as Coping with Stress and Anxiety Group and Managing Strong Emotions. To sign up, fill out this Google Form.
Student and trained yoga teacher, Dalia Bender, is interested in offering free yoga classes. They have put out this Google Form to ask folks about their availability and their preference for in-person (socially distanced and with masks), online or recorded classes. Dalia brings a beautiful warmth and energy to their yoga classes, and I’d highly recommend enrolling in one. In an interview with Pallavi Mehra for GQ India, Tarini Nirula, a yoga teacher and wellness advocate, tells us,
“If you have practiced yoga today, you are probably feeling more relaxed and at ease. In addition, yoga helps us to embrace imperfections with compassion, leading to a beautiful equanimity of energies in our daily life – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.”
Speaking of spirituality — the Mills chapel is reopening with a brand-new chaplain and schedule of spiritual events and resources! On February 3, 2022, the chaplain, Patricia St. Onge, wrote on the Mills Student Forum,
“As we’re stepping more fully into the transition from Mills College to being ‘Mills College at Northeastern University’, we want to be sure to create space for us to process the many feelings that are emerging as a result. Beginning February 1st, we’ll have programming/space for people to process this journey that we share as a community, as well as the impacts it’s having on us as individuals.”
The chapel will have drop-in hours (detailed in the forum post), one-on-one spiritual coaching opportunities, community worship from various faith traditions, and spiritual activities. To see the Chapel’s monthly event schedule, click here.
Last but not least, the student-led Community Health Resource Center is hosting a series of fun and informative events related to relationships and sexual wellness. This includes the traditional Tinder and Tacos story-sharing night, as well as other events like Healing from Friendship Breakups and Sexual Hygiene Q&A. For more information, click here!
As psychologist and Buddhist writer Dr. Tara Brach wrote in her book “Radical Acceptance: Embracing Your Life With the Heart of a Buddha”, “[The] revolutionary act of treating ourselves tenderly can begin to undo the aversive messages of a lifetime.” As my own best friend often reminds me, “you deserve vast amounts of love.” I wish you a happy February, Millsies, from my heart to yours.