About Marie Miguel

Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with Mind-Diagnostics.org. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.

Counseling Resources for Stressed Scientists

Professionals who work in fast-paced, high-stress jobs often find themselves struggling to keep up with their mental health. Scientists, engineers, and physicians dedicate themselves to careers of science without always managing the personal ramifications of a demanding work life. While it benefits all of society when scientists are dedicated to their work, it is also extremely important that they take care of their own mental health both for their personal development as well as long-term, lasting professional success.

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Resources for Stress Management

If you experience struggles with your mental health, it may help to read self-help articles written by mental health professionals. For scientists, this is much akin to reading research papers and then applying the findings to your own research. After reading such articles, reflect upon their value and delve into an analysis of how their advice can be applied in your own life.

As a scientist, you may be able to think linearly and analytically, and this thought process can actually be applied to the analysis of your mental health. Try searching MyTherapist for online resources, tips, and advice on finding qualified therapists who are ready to work with you.

When available academic resources do not adequately treat your mental health, the next step in the progression of addressing mental health issues may be to talk with a friend, colleague, or significant other. It is very helpful to discuss feelings and concerns with people you trust. It may even be worthwhile to read the self-help articles with another person so that you can each brainstorm ways in which the information included in the articles can be integrated into your life.

These articles may contain actionable advice, like instructions for meditation, journaling, or deep breathing that could begin your journey to improved mental wellness.

Therapy and Counseling

If your mental state does not improve after reading articles and having discussions with trusted companions, it is likely time to pursue therapy. Therapy can help when mental health issues loom with no apparent end to the symptoms in sight.

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The stigmas surrounding therapy have fortunately been shrinking. Therapy works well for those experiencing a diagnosed mental illness, but it can work wonders for anyone. Especially for those bright-minded scientists who regard their mental strength as impressive, it may feel demoralizing to need to speak with someone to regain control of your mind. Just remember that experiencing troubles with mental health is a very common occurrence.

Just because a person is very smart, it does not mean that they can control all mental processes and emotions. Addressing and improving any existing mental health struggles through therapy could actually benefit your thought process and therefore your work.

Online Therapy

Virtual therapy is a great resource that is only growing in popularity and availability. It provides patients with a convenient and confidential way to work through issues with a licensed therapist.

For busy scientific professionals, it may be difficult to find the time to schedule therapy sessions, drive to the therapist’s office, spend an hour in therapy, and then drive home. Thanks to virtual therapy, sessions may be more flexible and can involve less commuting and associated stress.

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Scheduling therapy sessions online is a simple, quick task that provides great flexibility in scheduling. And, since everything is online, the patient need not leave the comfort of their home or office to engage in therapy sessions.

Another benefit of virtual therapy is that the cost of online sessions is typically lower than in-office visits. While some health insurance companies may not cover virtual therapy as much as in-person therapy, the overall cost is still often much lower.

In-person therapy can cost between $65 and $200+ per session, depending upon the therapist and the type of therapy needed. Luckily, there are different types of online mental health services available to patients that represent a range of price points.

On some sites, text or email options can be available for around $40 per week. Sessions with online therapists are less expensive than in-office sessions and typically run between $75 and $120 per session. This is a moderately priced therapy option that provides virtual face-to-face treatment at a lower cost.

Remember to choose the treatment options that are appropriate for your mental condition and fit well with your lifestyle. The life of a scientist is tough enough, and caring for your mental health is a vital and valuable part of one’s personal and professional success.

Is Global Warming Causing Stress Among Young Students?

Climate change is a pressing global issue and has only grown in the public eye. After many decades of suspicions and then confirmations of the negative impacts of humans on the environment, there are ever-increasing environmentalist movements that strive to bring awareness to the issue and try to stop and reverse these destructive forces.

The current generation is likely the most vocal and aware of the grave dangers of climate change. Because of the impact of the current environmentalist movement, increased education, and mainstream entrance, many young students are constantly thinking of ways that they can help the planet.

However, the weight of climate change remains heavy. Many young students report increased levels of anxiety and depression and cite global warming as a cause of their “climate anxiety”. Anxiety, especially climate anxiety, can be very harmful, and therapy or counseling as listed here may be a good option to help address it. Climate anxiety, and anxieties in general, should not be taken lightly.

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Why are young students stressed about the climate?

For people who don’t experience climate anxiety or tend to think about the environment, it can be confusing and distressing to see young folks so distraught. Many people believe that young students don’t have much at all to be worried about, except maybe for school and their social lives, and so they shouldn’t be experiencing anxiety.

However, the truth is that this stress can show up in young people for a number of reasons, and should not be discounted. The feeling of responsibility for global problems many generations in the making can be intense, especially as many of the worse consequences of climate change are getting more obvious and are only expected to increase.

1. This is the first time they are learning about the environmental crisis

For many young students, this could be the first time they’ve heard about global warming or at least the first time they are truly aware of what that means. The crisis feels very imminent and scary to them. Science does not lie to spare feelings, and indeed an understanding of the gravity of the situation may be necessary to fight it.

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2. Their brains are still in development

For any young person who is still developing, emotions may feel more intense. This does not mean that they are any less valid or that the stress is less founded in reality. This simply goes to show just how powerful the feelings of stress and anxiety can be for young students.

3. They perceive the impact on both their immediate and long-term futures

Many adults do not necessarily see the climate crisis as a large issue because the consequences seem as though they will only arise once their lives are over. This is not the case for young students who feel as though they will be personally impacted by the consequences.

What can we do about it?

Global warming and the anxiety and stress that individuals may experience surrounding it are not lost causes. Not only is it possible to develop coping mechanisms for the stress, but also to divert the negative feelings of stress and anxiety towards helpful practices that fight climate change.

1. Learn more about ways we can help in our daily lives

One major way for anyone to cope with anxiety is to learn and input concrete practices to counter that anxiety into their daily life. For climate anxiety, this may look like decreasing plastic waste, taking public transportation, or eating lower on the food chain.

2. Increase activism

Many young students look up to other youth activists, like Greta Thunberg, as role models in the fight against global warming. Allowing young students to participate safely in protests and strikes can help them to feel like they are part of the change. Parents can vocally support policies that aim to reduce the effects of global warming and may implement environmentally friendly practices and habits starting at home.

 

3. Attend therapy

Climate anxiety is a real aspect of general worry and can contribute to an anxiety disorder. Therapy can help young students establish personal coping mechanisms for their anxieties that can help them feel better in the long run. If anxiety does not seem manageable on one’s own, consider speaking with a therapist or setting an appointment for your child to do so.

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Climate anxiety is a powerful emotion for a young student, but it is also a sign that this student is a caring, empathetic person. The awareness, engagement, and leadership visible in the next generation may in fact create a better world, free from global warming, for future generations. One must just remember that taking care of one’s own mental health is just as important as the health of the Earth, and self-care will make a more effective, long-lasting activist in the long run.

Protecting Transgender Employees

When you think about workplace safety, what comes to mind? Perhaps it’s being issued protective equipment to reduce injury, processes to report employer misconduct, or a clear and concise evacuation plan in the event of a fire or other emergency.

For many of us, feeling safe at work is something we’ve become accustomed to and may take for granted. But for others, especially members of minority groups and the LGBTQ community, workplace safety can feel like an afterthought.

This is certainly true for transgender individuals. Transgender – or trans – is the term used for people whose gender identity is different from the sex assigned to them at birth. Some trans people identify as trans men or trans women; others describe themselves using descriptive terms including non-binary, genderqueer, gender non-conforming, agender, or bigender. One in three Americans know someone who is transgender – these are our friends and family members, our neighbors, our peers, and our colleagues.

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Challenges Facing The Transgender Community

The trans community faces tremendous stigma in society, and discrimination against transgender people is all too common in school settings and the workplace. The Center for America Progress notes that “90 percent of transgender workers report some form of harassment or mistreatment on the job” due to their gender identity. This includes being overlooked or fired from a job, having received a negative performance review or been denied a promotion, or verbally or physically abused.

Employers should familiarize themselves with the challenges facing their trans employees. Doing so can help ensure employers are in compliance with federal, state, and local laws established to help protect the trans community, but also with the goal of creating a healthy workplace environment for all.

1. Gender Dysphoria

Some trans people might experience something called gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria refers to the discomfort and distress felt among individuals whose gender identity differs from their sex assigned at birth. This condition can become debilitating and interfere with day-to-day activities. Mind Diagnostics offers a confidential test that may be helpful when looking to determine if you’re experiencing gender dysphoria. Based on the results, you can work with your doctor to help manage your feelings.

2. Violence

The rate of discrimination against trans people at the workplace is staggering, and stigma and harassment are also rampant in society. In some cases, harassment can become violent and even life-threatening. According to Human Rights Campaign, the rate of violence perpetrated against trans people is more severe than that against the average person. The majority of transgender people have experienced violence at the hands of an intimate partner, and 47% have been sexually assaulted. Nearly 30 trans and gender non-conforming people were violently killed in 2020.

3. Lack of Healthcare Coverage

The U.S. healthcare system falls short when it comes to serving the trans community. Human Rights Campaign Foundation data shows 22% of trans people and 32% of trans people of color live without health insurance and 29% have been refused healthcare because of their gender identity.

4. Poverty

Studies show that 29% of trans adults live in poverty, and this figure increases for trans people in the Black, Latinx, Alaska Native, Asian, Native Americans, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities.

Workplace Discrimination Against Transgender People Is Illegal

The Supreme Court ruled in 2020 that federal law prohibits anti-transgender discrimination in the workplace (Bostock v. Clayton County). Yet, more work is needed to ensure all employees are properly protected.

The National Center for Transgender Equality offers helpful information about transgender rights and the avenues transgender individuals can pursue should they be discriminated against at work. In summary:

  • Federal law makes it illegal to fire, refuse to hire, harass, or otherwise discriminate due to gender identity, gender transition, sex assigned at birth, or transgender status.
  • Trans people have a right not to be fired or refused a job or promotion because they are transgender.
  • Severe or widespread sex-based harassment is unlawful when an employer does not take steps to stop it. Harassment may include jokes or derogatory comments, intentional misuse of names or pronouns, and invasive or disrespectful personal questions.
  • Trans people have the right to safe and adequate access to restrooms and other facilities consistent with their gender identity.
  • Employers cannot prohibit or force a trans person from disclosing their transgender status or gender identity, nor can they disclose someone’s transgender status without consent.

Why Recycling Can Help With Anxiety

The kinds of products that one can recycle today is astonishing, as are the number of recycling services available across the country. Even folks living in more rural areas can typically reach a local recycling center in a matter of minutes where they can recycle plastics, cardboards, and glass.

Many grocery stores nowadays even have soft plastic recycling bins you can use to deposit used grocery bags, food wrappers, and other soft plastic material including netting and dog food bags. Recycling offers the opportunity for any individual to keep material out of landfills and reduce waste by turning old material into new products for reuse. But, it has other benefits too. Recycling is an excellent way to get organized and reduce anxiety around the house.

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Spring Cleaning/Recycling can help reduce anxiety

If you’ve been feeling increased anxiety at home, take a look around the house. Sometimes a fresh start can help bring a sense of calm and clear headedness to your life. It may not be a cure-all for all of the anxiety you may be feeling, but a good spring clean may go further than you may think.

There is something to be said about walking into a room that is free of clutter and arranged in an inviting way. It increases a sense of pride in your home and your life, and makes room for your mind to focus on other things. It can stimulate productivity in other areas of your life, also. But how do you get started when the whole task of cleaning out and recycling seems a tad too overwhelming?

How to Get Started

Begin with one room at a time, tackling the easiest one first so you don’t get overwhelmed too quickly. This may be a room such as the pantry or office, or an extra bedroom. Decide how long you want to spend on each room, one weekend for example, and try your best to stick to your schedule. This process may fill you with anxiety at first, but once you get started you may begin to notice just how therapeutic the process really is.

Next you’ll need to create piles to sort your goods into: keep, trash, give away, and recycle. You can place these piles in each room or create a master pile somewhere inside or outside the house.

1. Keep Pile

This pile should be one of the smaller piles, believe it or not. It is reserved for items you absolutely need, use often, or has the highest sentimental value when compared to other items.

2. Sell Pile

Items in the sell pile are those with enough value not to throw away or recycle, but not worth holding onto because they are no longer needed or wanted. Use an online marketplace to sell them or do it the old fashioned way via a yard sale.

3. Give Away Pile

This pile is meant for all those items you love, but you really don’t need. These items you may have a hard time donating to strangers or recycling, but you may feel better about giving away friends or family. Examples of items appropriate for this pile could be gifts given to you that you’ve used seldomly, expensive items you no longer need or use but are hard to sell, or items with sentimental value.

4. Recycle Pile

Anything you can’t donate, sell, or give away should be considered for the recycle pile before going to the trash. Items that can be recycled include electronics of all kinds, paints, oils and other toxic substances, wood, yard clippings, plastic, metal, glass, soft plastics, cardboard and paper products, eyeglasses, and clothing.