‘Wellness Zoom Rooms’ offer pandemic relief

Digital meetings engage with yoga, journaling, art

It is not much of a surprise that the mental wellness of many have been affected due to the pandemic. From lockdowns, layoffs, cut hours, vaccinations, deprivation of meeting loved ones and mandatory masks, it has been a tough time for a majority of people. Due to limited public activities, people have found cost effective hobbies to relieve stress and their overall mental well-being.

The Counseling and Resource Center at Edmonds College has picked up on these hobbies as well, offering “Wellness Zoom Rooms” to be available to students who need guidance in improving wellness. The Wellness Zoom Rooms ledactivities such as journaling, yoga, and art.

Erica Walters, a counseling intern at the Edmonds Counseling and Resource Center, led the group that focused on journaling. Her participants met weekly.

“As a collective, we were concerned with the impact of the pandemic, and isolation from typical activities would have on many individuals. As a way to connect during social distancing, we thought it would be beneficial to lead a variety of different wellness groups. Practicing wellness in the best of times is beneficial, and we wanted to emphasize manydifferent ways to foster-self care, especially during this unique time of remote learning.”

Giahan Vo, a student at Edmonds College, has taken up digital art during the pandemic.

“It’s like an escape from reality. I can draw for hours on end and sometimes forget that I have tons of responsibilities waiting for me when I turn my iPad off,” Vo said. “It’s underrated as to how calming it is and I think everyone should atleast try something artistic that could help with the stress.”

These wellness activities may seem oriented towards a specific gender, but Walters disagrees.

“Wellness, self-care, and mindfulness are becoming terms that people are building familiarity with. I imagine that there is some discomfort with a beginning practice of wellness, but the response to incorporating this into the daily routine has had a positive reception overall.”

Walters is astonished by the resilience that people have demonstrated throughout these trying times and believes offering wellness rooms is a great method to build self-care practices.

For those who feel as if wellness activities are not for them, the Counseling and Resource Center offers free counseling services to Edmonds College students. For more information, visit https://www.edmonds.edu/counseling/.