We're all in this together

We learn about and navigate the world around us largely through our interpersonal interactions, so it’s important to facilitate and value these interactions in a healthy way. Social wellness is all about developing emotional connections and meaningful relationships with others, that way you can better see how your own health and social awareness can function and develop the health and social awareness of your network.

If you’re noticing any of the following, now might be the right time to begin improving your social wellness:

  • Withdrawing from interpersonal relationships
  • Problems with communication
  • Increased irritability
  • Overreacting in new social situations

Things to consider

There are plenty of ways to expand your social network beyond your class community. Here are just a few approaches you could take in connecting with new people during your time at IU Bloomington:

  • Join a student organization. IU has hundreds of student organizations you can find on BeINvolved or during campus tabling sessions. So whether you are interested in a specific sport, career, hobby, or skill, there are over 750 student groups to choose from.
  • Visit one of IU’s Cultural Centers and Institutes. IU’s six Cultural Centers and Institutes are centered around giving students a place to meet new people, become more familiar with new or different cultures, and establish intercultural connections and community throughout campus.
  • Participate in a CAPS workshop. Feel better together while meeting people who have common lived experiences or goals.
  • Volunteer. Volunteering can make you feel like you’re part of something bigger and are helping the community or world around you. Through IU Corps, the City of Bloomington Volunteer Network, as well as some of the student organizations found on BeInvolved, you can find plenty of opportunities to volunteer on campus or within the Bloomington community.

Whether you’re new to IU or are preparing to graduate, it’s important to understand that social connections change, and sometimes you might need to find new ways to socialize. By exploring new interests and meeting new people in the process, you may find it easier to bounce back from sudden changes in your social life with greater resilience.

When it comes to developing and sustaining meaningful connections with others, it’s important to be introspective and understanding of yourself and those around you.

  • Practice self-care. However it may look for you, building self-care into your schedule allows you to attend to your personal wellness needs and be happier, healthier, and more resilient within your social network.
  • Explore new opportunities. Deepen your interpersonal relationships and get to know your friends better by trying new activities with them, or by exploring activities relating to their interests.

Your Social Wellness to-do lists

Check out these ideas provided by the Student Health Center's Peer Health and Wellness Educators on what you can do to improve your social wellness and build resilience.

This week:

  • Join a student organization
  • Engage with tabling on campus
  • Go to an event that you don’t typically go to
  • Explore social media for student orgs and other opportunities

This month:

  • Go to three new events
  • Make routines to increase regular social interactions
  • Check in with new and old friends
  • Look for a job or volunteer experiences