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Focus on mental health this week with UFlourish activities

By Kristy Koehler, October 9 2018 —

From today through Oct. 12, UFlourish activities are taking place around campus. Billed by the University of Calgary as way to help build “positive mental health and personal resilience at the University of Calgary,” the concept behind UFlourish is based on the research of Corey Keyes, known for his work with positive psychology. Keyes describes living well and having mental well-being as flourishing.

Keyes’s research identified five elements that help people flourish. A variety of the offered activities at UFlourish such as art, knitting and lego-building are based around the element of ‘play.’

“Play, learn, interact, help and connect are these five factors. By participating in one of these on a daily basis we can live optimally well in terms of our mental health,” said Russell Thomson, health promotion coordinator at the U of C. “Colouring, painting and the fun aspects come from this play element the idea of unstructured time and being totally enthralled with the activity.”

Other activities include a movie night, a roundtable discussion about cannabis, a nap space, a body-positivity workshop and a Wellness Fair. The Wellness Fair is the flagship event of UFlourish and will take place in MacHall on Oct. 10 from 10:30 a.m.1:30 p.m. According to Thomson, the event is a great for “bringing together different departments, units, faculties and student groups on campus to do something around mental health.”

Another highlight of the week for Thomson is the intercultural panel ‘Knowledge Keepers: Exploring Ways of Wellness.’ The event will take place on Thursday, Oct. 11 from 12:30–2:30 p.m. at the MacHall Council Chambers and will feature a discussion from the community’s cultural leaders about diverse understandings of well-being.

Some activities require pre-registration. A full list of events and registration information can be found online.

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