• Masen Carey

Be Nice: To You

The Be Nice club at Spring Lake High School has always been centered around person-to-person interactions. But, as we all know, this year has brought about a significant amount of change. Teacher Mrs. Boodt, and seniors Jaynie Seylhower, Taylor Gates, and I, Masen Carey, found ourselves searching for an answer to the question, “How are we going to spread kindness when we can’t be with other people?”

After meeting together and talking through our options, we decided it was best to focus on people as individuals. Be nice to yourself. But, how do we, as a club, help? The other leaders and I worked to create a weekly structure focusing on a new healthy habit each week. I was in charge of a week focusing on the outdoors. I researched how going outside affects mental health and shared it with the Be Nice club members. I also challenged the members to go outside and post a photo. If they did this, they could win a gift card! The week ended and we had 32 participants. Some people reached out to me and told me that being outside in nature truly helped how they felt. They said it was refreshing, especially during the long days of class on zoom.

Another leader of our group, Jaynie Seylhower worked on the topic of Good Sleep. Sleep seems to be a foreign concept to many high school students. So, Jaynie took initiative and taught the members of Be Nice about why getting quality sleep is so important. She also shared some meditation techniques and videos that help people fall asleep better. Many members responded, saying that these techniques were very helpful.

The leaders of Be Nice understand that these days are tough. We are trying our best to stay positive and be there for one another. But, we know that many people’s mental health has been declining because of all the craziness. With the holidays approaching, we recognize that not doing things the normal way can be difficult. We encourage everyone to remember that Christmas is a time of joy. Embrace the ugly and appreciate the beautiful. Be nice to yourself. Acknowledge that you may need to take a break. If you need anything, reach out. Remember to get good sleep, take time away from a screen, eat healthy foods, drink enough water, write, go outdoors, get your exercise, connect with others, and be thankful.