Staff Mental Health & Wellness
SMCPS staff is nothing short of AMAZING!! We know this past year was TOUGH! We know it is challenging students AND staff in ways we never imagined. Just know . . . You Matter . . . You are doing a "GOOD JOB" . . . YOU are going to have a GREAT new year!!
Mental Health & Wellness is Important!
As we manage all that 2020 and 2021 have brought us, we are reminded that our students, our co-workers, and even ourselves have been through a lot during this last year. It is important to take care of yourself and take time to breathe and relax. This page is designed to provide a one-stop location for information on Mental Health & Wellness. Take a look around and check back often!
It is important to remember that people may feel overwhelmed and experience a range of emotions to include worry, anger, or sadness that just seems to not go away. Anxiety is a normal and healthy emotion that we all have. Sometimes, this worry is out of balance and we feel it to the point where it interferes with our life. It impacts our education, our relationships with friends/family, and can even contribute to medical issues due to an imbalance of stress hormones. Anger can also be the root of many other social, emotional, and behavioral concerns. Anger is one of the most misunderstood emotions. We all feel it! It is normal! It is natural! It can be healthy! However, the way in which we express or perceive anger can be problematic. Sometimes, we do not know how to express our anger or respond to the anger in other people. Think about how anger impacts you and those around you? Use the resources below to help learn more information on recognizing and addressing anger: personally and professionally, learn about what stress, anxiety, and worry are and strategies to manage them. There is help and hope for staff!
Let's explore some of the big emotions we may have or our students and families may have as we return to full-time in-person instruction!!
Click the video to the right to explore early warning signs of anger. Click the video below to learn more about the "hidden" triggers of anger.
Anger is often perceived to come out of nowhere. This is a common misconception. Anger is never "just anger". Click the link below to learn about the cycle of anger.
So, you may be thinking that you know what anger is and you know how to recognize it . . . but, do you know what to do with it? How to manage it? How to not let it impact you? Check out this TedTalk and the Tame Your Temper Link for helpful tips!
Do you wonder if your anger is out of control? Use the buttons below to do a self-check!
~Anxiety & Worry~
Students and Staff BOTH experience Anxiety & Worry
Take a look at the videos below to learn a little more about how to cope with anxiety as a teacher and to learn about students with anxiety and what they wish their teachers understood.
This video helps show some strategies that teachers can use to help their students struggling with anxiety.
Mindfulness is another activity one can do to calm and center ourselves. It relaxes the body and the mind. Try it out below!!
Professional Development On The Go!!
SMCPS has developed short presentations below (~10 minutes) designed to give staff some quick information to help with mental health & wellness. Take a peek when you have 10 minutes or so.
Many people are dealing with mental health and wellness issues. We have developed a Mental Health Media Room if you would like to learn more about different mental health conditions. The videos are short and you may find the information helpful for you, your family, your students, etc. Take a peek when you feel like learning!
Are you feeling stressed? Trying using our SMCPS Calming Room below to help relax. Take a few minutes to explore and find what helps you calm!
Depression Awareness and Support is vital. How do you know if your student is depressed? How do you know if you are depressed? Take a look at the videos, documents and links below to help you understand the warning signs and when to seek help.
Use the button above to take a smart screener for behavioral health wellness. This is a great way to check in on yourself. Just try it!
In addition to being mindful about our own mental health and wellness, SMCPS is also tasked with helping our students. Here are some helpful videos and information about child and teen depression.
Our students are also at risk of getting into unhealthy relationships. Sometimes, teachers and staff are the first to notice. Look below for some helpful information and tips.
Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention
This issue impacts everyone, not just teens. Parents, students, staff, and communities are all impacted. Together, we can raise awareness and provide support to our students and encourage healthy relationships. Check out the resources below for more information.
Sometimes, we realize that we, or someone we know may need more support and resources to manage their struggles. Below are some great options to help support mental health concerns.
The St. Mary's County Health Department also has Behavioral Health Prevention Resources on their website. This includes information on some local initiatives such as Suicide Prevention, Opioid Misuse, Vaping Prevention, and Underage Drinking Prevention. Please check them out HERE.
Local Tele-Health Resource Guide
SMCPS Employee Assistance Program
This time may be a cause of stress anxiety for staff and their families. SMCPS remains committed to providing you information on available community-based mental and behavioral health resources to assist during this time.
Emergency mental and behavioral health needs are best met by accessing community-based supports. If you feel you or someone you know may harm themselves or others, please use the following resources directly:
Call 911 in case of an emergency
Call 211, Option 1 (MD 211 Helpline)
Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) - National Suicide Prevention Hotline
Text 741-741 - Suicide Prevention Hotline
Call 1-833-MD-B-SAFE (1-833-632-7233)
For non-emergency mental and behavioral health needs, the following tele-health resource guide, developed by the St. Mary’s County Health Department, provides a list of available support in our community.