This year’s theme for Mental Health Awareness Month is “Look Around, Look Within,” a reminder to reflect and acknowledge that all our lives are filled with a range of positive and negative emotions–joy and sadness, hope and hesitancy, stability and fear. Let’s advocate, educate, and reduce the stigma associated with mental health at Princeton and in our communities.
If you, or someone you care about is feeling depressed, anxious, hopeless, isolated, or dealing with addiction, Princeton has many benefits and resources, including counseling programs, to assist you and your eligible dependents.
Taking care of your physical, mental, and financial wellness is extremely important. We hope this monthly benefits newsletter will make it easy and convenient for you to do just that.
The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress, 24/7, across the United States. The Lifeline is comprised of a national network of over 200 local crisis centers, combining custom local care and resources with national standards and best practices. Dial or text 988 for immediate assistance.
For additional resources about suicide awareness and prevention, visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website.
Carebridge offers in-person counseling at the Employee Wellness Center, at 350 Alexander Street on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. Speak with a Carebridge counselor for help with:
- Stress and anxiety
- Depression and loneliness
- Grief and loss
- Relationship conflicts
- Parenting concerns
- Trauma or domestic abuse
Schedule your appointment online.
In addition to in-person counseling, Carebridge offers 24/7 support via phone at (800) 437-0911, on their website (code TW8AE), or download their App from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Managing Emotions During Stressful Times
Tuesday, May 9, noon–1:00 p.m.
Register through Zoom
This session will raise awareness of stress symptoms and emotional responses. Learn positive strategies to manage stress and anxiety by implementing simple self-care practices such as relaxation techniques.
Thursday, May 18, 10–11:00 a.m.
Register through Zoom
Is it simply “the blues” or something more? What are the signs of depression and how is it treated? Someone I love seems depressed; how can I help? Answers to these questions are the focus of this seminar.
Grief Check-In: Grief is Exhausting
Wednesday, May 31, 1–1:30 p.m.
Register through Zoom
Grief consumes an enormous amount of our energy. Participants will learn strategies to manage fatigue as they move through grief towards healing. Participation is anonymous.
eM Life, is a mindfulness tool offered through Carebridge. The app and website provide evidence-based mindfulness solutions to prevent and reduce mental health concerns. To begin your mindfulness journey, follow these instructions. The benefits of practicing mindfulness include reduced levels of stress and anxiety, better mood, increase in compassion, more resilience, higher productivity and efficiency levels, and better quality of sleep. The app/website have:
- Live and interactive mindfulness sessions held multiple times every day, in various languages, by a diverse group of highly certified experts.
- On-demand access to hundreds of hours of content across a wide range of topics like sleep, anxiety, performance, eating, parenting, leadership, financial stress, and more.
- Video and audio-only experiences offered in 1-10+ minute single sessions or multi-episode series.
- Immersive programs including Mindfulness at Work, QuitSmart™ Mindfully, and Skills to Thrive in Anxious Times.
Aetna & UnitedHealthcare
Aetna and UnitedHealthcare offer various resources and programs to help you manage the mental health of you and your family members. Aetna members, call (800) 424-4660 and select “option 2” to be connected with a behavioral health representative. United members, call (877) 609-2273 or log in to your online account to access behavioral health support.
If you are enrolled in the Princeton Health Plan with UnitedHealthcare you are invited to attend:
Mental Health Awareness & Resources
Tuesday, May 23, noon–1:00 p.m.
AbleTo, offered for both Aetna and UnitedHealthcare members, is a virtual therapy program that provides emotional support to assist with the stress, depression, and anxiety that comes with a medical condition or life change. AbleTo programs are based on cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), which focuses on how thoughts, feelings, and actions are connected, and will help you learn actionable skills based on these connections.
During the 8-week program, you will work with two AbleTo specialists–once a week with a therapist to address emotional challenges, and once a week with a behavior coach to identify health goals and develop an action plan. There are no fees or copays for this service for individuals enrolled in the Princeton Health Plan, HMO plan, or J-1 Visa Plan. CDHP participants must meet their deductible prior to services being covered. Get started.
Teladoc Mental Health allows you to video conference with a licensed health provider, including psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, and social workers, who can provide both therapy and medication management to help treat depression, anxiety, and stress. If you are enrolled in Aetna or UnitedHealthcare, this confidential service allows you to establish an ongoing relationship with the provider of your choice and schedule regular visits. Register online or call (855) 835-2362 for assistance.
My Health Coach
Physical and Mental Wellness – It’s All Connected
Tuesday, May 16, 11–11:45 a.m.
Register through Zoom
Join Health Coaches, Gerry Pierre and Nicole Houk, in collaboration with Mary Dougherty-Hunt of Carebridge EAP, for a discussion on the mind-body connection. Attendees will learn the impact of stress on physical health and the comorbidity of anxiety and depression with diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and obesity. Strategies to manage your whole health will be provided.
Tips for Managing Stress
Chronic stress is linked to many health problems, including anxiety, addiction, depression, sleep problems, hypertension, and weight gain. If you manage your stress effectively, your overall health and mental wellbeing will improve. Below are some stress management strategies:
- To learn simple healthy tools to increase optimism, watch this short stress management video to create calm in your body and foster hope for the goals you wish to accomplish.
- To improve your mood, eat a diet rich in nutrient-dense, anti-inflammatory, whole foods, including a variety of vegetables and fruit, foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, and limit refined sugars.
- To positively impact emotional and mental health, engage regularly in moderate to vigorous intensity exercise and stretching to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression and relieve the physical tensions of stress.
- To develop stress management strategies, increase life joy, and improve your overall health and well-being, engage with a Health Coach.
The Castlight tool can help you find in-network mental health professionals, including psychiatrists and facilities, and compare them by location, cost, quality rating, and patient reviews. Benefits-eligible faculty and staff, and their adult dependents, enrolled in a Princeton medical plan have access to Castlight at no cost. Register for Castlight or download the App from the Apple App Store or Google Play. To learn more, call (866) 207-6344 weekdays from 8:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.
Keep your financial goals on track with TIAA’s live webinars, including “Make the Move Toward Long-Term Financial Security – Your Midcareer Check-in” and “Paycheck for Life.” For the complete listing of this month’s TIAA webinars, visit the registration page.
TIAA offers individual retirement counseling sessions, either online or by phone, which provide in-depth planning assistance. To schedule an appointment, register online.
CAPTRUST’s number one mission is to connect participants with timely, relevant, and actionable content to help you make smarter financial decisions and ultimately retire with confidence. This benefit is free, completely confidential, and provided by a company that has no products or services to sell you.
CAPTRUST Financial Advisors will be conducting in-person sessions on Wednesday, May 24. Topics covered in the 45-minute individual advisory sessions include retirement and general financial planning, in addition to investment education and advice. Schedule your appointment.
For information, including articles, videos and other valuable resources, visit the CAPTRUST website.
To speak to a counselor about the University’s retirement plan and/or other financial issues, call the Retirement Advice Line at (800) 967-9948.
Isles is dedicated to helping people manage everyday money issues such as budgeting, saving, and reducing debt. Counseling is available in English and Spanish.
The Employee Wellness Center @ 350 Alexander
Here, you will find support to help you care for yourself and your family, so you can thrive at work and at home. Whatever challenges you’re facing, help is available. Get more details on the HR website.
For questions about physical or mental wellness resources, contact Lynn Herbine. For financial wellness inquiries, contact Jane Edgar. The Benefits Team is available to assist at (609) 258-3302 or [email protected]. For complete details on all wellness resources and programs, visit the HR website.