If you’ve ever been a student searching for a job, you’ve definitely heard of Student Job Search (SJS). If you’re funded by a Daddy and have never been on that job search grind, SJS is a charity, underwritten by MSD and the student unions, that hooks students up with job opportunities. They have recently partnered with an online mental health platform called Clearhead.
I decided to give Clearhead a go to see what it was like, because why not?
If you sign up, Clearhead will send you a confirmation email, which will probably go to your junk folder which feels kinda dodge, but #trusttheprocess and follow all the confirmation instructions. Click the link and you’re in, baby! They’ve also got an app you can download if that’s more your speed.
First I completed my wellbeing assessment, in which the bot asked me a bunch of questions about my challenges in life. I only picked one problem, because I didn’t want to be there for hours. The bot sent through a puppy pic to cheer me up along the way. Vibe status = absolutely wholesome <3.
After having a chat about my challenge, emotions, thoughts and behaviours (which took about 7 minutes), the bot set up a wellbeing plan for me. The plan included a bunch of lessons and tools relevant to the information I’d given in the assessment.
I tried out a deep breathing exercise, breathing in as a little blue bubble expanded and breathing out as it contracted back onto itself. It was fucking mint, but maybe that had something to do with the fact that it was 11pm on a Monday and I had woken up at 5am that morning.
Clearhead can also help you find a therapist. You can filter your search for them baddies based on your issues. At the time though, there were only three therapists in Dunedin listed on the website, so maybe take your therapist search elsewhere.
Although my mental state was not suddenly enlightened after using Clearhead, it did help me understand some of the roots of my thoughts and behaviours, which is helpful information. It made me more self-aware and encouraged me to challenge my negative thoughts and behaviours — a bit like how a loving bestie does when they’re not taking the mick out of you.
If you’re someone whose only form of therapy has been sitting alone in bed eating grated cheese out the bag with tears streaming down your face at 2am, then Clearhead is a great place to get started talking about your mental health. And if you’re looking for a way to procrastinate that isn’t staring out the library window for ten minutes straight, having a look at Clearhead is a great use of your time.
The hot collab between SJS and Clearhead dropped at the beginning of February this year. In that month, 163 users had signed up to Clearhead through the SJS link. Of these users, only five students had Otago email addresses.
Something really fan-fucking-tastic about Clearhead is that they offer all their services in te reo Māori and “provide culturally appropriate resources which consider the Māori worldview and tikanga Māori,” said Clearhead Chief Executive, Dr Angela Lim.
Clearhead is available (for free) to all tertiary students. You don’t even have to use SJS. Simply sign up on their website (https://sjs.clearhead.org.nz) using your Uni email. (Yes, the Uni email that ends in @student.otago.ac.nz, which you should be checking every day, but lately has been raking in notices about Miss ‘Rona).