Wellness has blossomed in recent years as people seek out new ways to achieve a healthier lifestyle and prevent illness. While some people have tried to capitalize on the shift toward wellness with new products or fads, there’s far more at work than trends.
At its core, wellness prioritizes a proactive approach to health as opposed to a more reactive one.
“Our team at Student Health & Wellness is committed to strengthening the wellness and well-being our students. We know that when students feel stronger, their experience at Dalhousie, on many levels, will be more meaningful and successful.” says Dr. David Pilon, director of Counselling and Psychological Services at Dal.
That’s why the Student Health & Wellness Centre in Student Health & Wellness Centre in Halifax offers group sessions that address a wide range of issues related to wellness in body and mind.
Dal’s 2023-2024 Group Wellness Sessions are divided into four different categories — mental health, professional development, book clubs, and holistic well-being — each of which offers its own unique lens on staying healthy.
These sessions focus on managing emotions, anxiety, and developing deeper relationships with the people around you.
“It’s a safe place for people to come with lived experience, including myself. It’s confidential, it’s non-judgemental. You can share if you want to or you can just sit and listen," says Marriam Abou-El-Haj, a psychologist at Dal and facilitator of the Healing Space: Drop-in Support for Eating Disorders Group Wellness sessions.
These sessions focus on career-development skills for soon-to-be graduates and international students.
A support group mixed with a book club! Read chapters from selected books and discuss responses and reflections in each session. This year’s titles: Stop Overthinking, Taming the Anxious Mind and The Subtle art of Not Giving a F*ck.
These sessions simultaneously address physical, mental, emotional and spiritual components of health.
New perspectives, new possibilities
Group Wellness Sessions will be offered year-round and vary in time duration and commitment, with specific sub-topics ranging from managing exam anxiety and support for eating disorders to enhancing your mind-body connection.
Dr. Pilon particularly appreciates how uniquely supportive group sessions can be, as folks are surrounded by peers who are sharing similar experiences. They offer students an opportunity to receive support and learn skills from a number of people who likely share many of the same challenges and worries. They are also an opportunity to receive immediate feedback from both peers and the group facilitator.
“Sometimes the idea of coming together in a group with people you don’t know can seem a little scary. However, often times, we see that the impact becomes really inspiring for students," says Dr. Pilon.
Group Wellness Sessions can be:
- A single session focusing on a specific topic
- A limited number of sessions to address an issue in a structured way
- An extended experience with no specified start or end date
“We live in a world of extraordinary change and increasing challenges and tensions. The importance of wellness and well-being as we all navigate through these times is essential,” says Dr. Pilon. “The university years are so influential in helping to establish so much in life that comes after. We want to support our students so that their Dalhousie experience is one that not only prepares them for the years ahead but also contributes memories of such a meaningful time in their life.”
Visit our Student Heath & Wellness website to check out all of the new sessions we have running this year and to get registered.
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