Over the course of 5 thirty minute modules, students will understand what stress looks like for them and develop or strengthen an internal locus of control related to their mental health and emotional wellbeing. They will gain skills for psychological resiliency such as self-advocacy, coping, and help-seeking, and learn how to apply these skills to better manage conflict, time, and money as examples.
In Module 1, students get an opportunity to explore their own personal stressors and how stress and distress impacts how they think, feel, and act. A video explaining the 4 What’s Next Mental Health Scale empowers students with the knowledge that they can take personal action to help improve their mental health, regardless of where they may be starting from. This is followed by an introduction to the 4 What’s Next Framework, which is the cornerstone of the program. A second video provides an overview of how students can use the 4 What’s Next Framework to help respond to current and future distress in healthy and productive ways.
In Module 2, students explore of the response method categories within the 4 What’s Next Framework: Reach In, which refers to utilizing independent coping skills or tools you can use within your own power that don’t require outside assistance or support. Students will discuss when you might choose to respond with Reach In as oppose to Reach Out and work towards building their own individualized coping kit of Reach In methods. They will discover a variety of categories of independent coping skills that help with different situations and apply these to real personal stressors and unpleasant feelings they may experience.
In Module 3, students explore the other response method category within the 4 What’s Next Framework: Reach Out, which refers to seeking and accepting help outside of yourself. Students create personalized Reach Out Support Webs, where they identify specific resources and sources of support available to them now as well as those that may be available to them in the future. This sparks a discussion about how these resources may change and adapt as students transition from one life chapter to the next. Afterwards, students will discuss when you might choose to respond with Reach Out, when to know you may need more intensive help, and how to assess if your chosen response method is working for you.
In Module 4, students define and identify examples of both internal and external conflict and discuss how experiencing conflict can affect their position on the Mental Health Scale. In addition to learning conflict resolution steps, they practice applying the 4 What’s Next Framework to distress scenarios related to internal and external conflict. Together, they identify specific Reach In and Reach Out methods to respond to the distress scenarios.
In Module 5, students discuss how time and money can lead to stress and distress, affecting their mental health. Just as they did in the previous module, students will practice applying the 4 What’s Next Framework to actual or hypothetical distress scenarios related to time and money. They will also spend time discussing how individual circumstances can impact how we balance wants and needs when managing time and money.