Know your state of mind
Mental health is super important. In fact, a healthy body needs a healthy mind to succeed on the sports field and off it.
This year, Varsity Sports, together with the Ithemba Foundation are reaching out to all Varsity Sports athletes, fans, supporters and basically everyone reading this page. So yes, you too.
The message is clear: be aware of your mental wellness and state of mind. Talk to somebody who could help you live a balanced life. Whether you think you need to or not – Speak Up!
Join us this year, as our Players of the Match wear bright green in support of mental health. Also, share our posts on social media and use the hash-tag #SpeakUp and help us spread the word on the importance of mental health.
Know the Five Signs that may mean you are in emotional distress and need assistance:
- Personality change: Not feeling like your usual self?
- Feeling agitated, anxious, angry, or moody?
- Are you withdrawn?
- Poor self-care: Are you not caring for yourself, or behaving in a risky manner?
- Feeling hopeless or overwhelmed by circumstances?
These five symptoms are the classic signs of a mood disorder. The question is: Do you recognise these signs in yourself, or a team-mate or class mate, or maybe a relative or friend? Then take action: Seek help. Depression and related mental health diseases are treatable!
It is important to realise that you probably have depression if you feel for longer than two weeks sad, anxious or “empty”; when you have difficulty concentrating or to remember; when you are indecisive; when you feel tired and without energy, worthless, hopeless, negative, irritable and desperate; if you cannot sleep, or sleep badly, or sleep too much; feel irritated and restless; when nothing is interesting anymore, and you eat too much or too little. You may even already experience involuntary thoughts about suicide. You should immediately make an appointment with the Student Support Services, the campus doctor, or your GP.
For more on the five signs, visit the Ithemba Foundation. The Ithemba Foundation is a non-profit organisation with two public benefit goals: to raise awareness of depression and related mental health disorders such as anxiety as clinical, biological diseases, and to support research. Ithemba means Hope in isiXhosa.
We’ve compiled a list of all the help centres at university campuses across South Africa below. If you don’t want to talk to a friend or family member, then contact your closest help centre.
Speak Up! Watch out for your room mate, your class mate, your flat mate, your team mate – depression and related illnesses can be treated – get help! Let’s take the “I” out of illness and replace it with “we” for wellness!
Other important and helpful resources
Lifeline 24-hour crisis line: 0861 322 322
SADAG helpline: 0800 567 567/ or sms 31393