Written By Marc Lehman, Owner and Family Therapist at


The college experience is a time of great exploration. For many students, it is the first time living away from home, making new friends and navigating coursework independently. While college can be an exciting time, it can also be challenging both socially and emotionally. As a parent, you may be wondering how you can best support your student during this transition.

Here are the top 5 ways to help your college freshman thrive socially, emotionally and academically:

  1. Encourage Them to Seek Out Counseling Services Early On

If your student is struggling to adjust to college life, encourage them to seek out counseling services early on. Many colleges offer counseling services to students, which can be incredibly helpful in managing stress, anxiety and depression. Virtual counseling has also become increasingly popular, as it allows students to receive counseling from the comfort of their own dorm room or apartment.

  1. Help Them Find Their Niche

One of the best ways to help your child thrive socially and emotionally in college is to help them find their niche. This could involve joining a club or student organization that aligns with their interests, participating in intramural sports or simply finding a group of friends with similar hobbies and interests. When students feel like they belong somewhere on campus, they are more likely to stick with it and succeed academically as well.

  1. Stay Connected but Respect Their Space

It can be tempting (and at times even necessary) to check in with your child frequently during their first year of college. However, it is important to respect their space and allow them to grow independently. While you should absolutely stay connected, try to limit yourself to weekly check-ins rather than daily calls or text messages. This will allow them the freedom to explore their new environment without feeling like they have to report back home every step of the way.

  1. Help Them Set Realistic Expectations

The first year of college can be brutal academically and socially – but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth it! Help your child set realistic expectations for their first year so that they know what they’re getting into and can better prepare themselves for the challenge ahead. It’s also important that you remind them that there is no shame in seeking out help when they need it – whether that means hiring a tutor or meeting with their professor outside of class.

  1. Celebrate Their Successes…Big and Small!

Last but not least, don’t forget to celebrate your child’s successes – big and small! Whether they land an internship, make the Dean’s List or simply survive their first semester away from home, take the time to acknowledge their hard work and remind them how proud you are of their accomplishments. A little positive reinforcement can go a long way in helping them stay motivated throughout their college career!

College can be an exciting but challenging time for students – but with the right support from parents, it doesn’t have to be overwhelming! By following these simple tips, you can help your freshman thrive socially, emotionally and academically throughout their first year (and beyond).

Marc Lehman

Owner and Founder of U ARE HEARD LLC


Written By Marc Lehman, Owner and Family Therapist at


It’s no secret that college is a time of stress and anxiety for many students. From the pressure of classes and exams to the social challenges of making new friends, there are plenty of opportunities for things to go wrong. And, unfortunately, mental health issues are on the rise among college students. In fact, a recent study found that anxiety and depression are now the most common health concerns among college students. So, what’s behind this mental health crisis? And what can parents do to help their kids?

The Pressure of College Life

There are a number of factors that can contribute to mental health problems in college students. For one thing, the transition to college life can
be a difficult one. Students may feel homesick or isolated, especially if they’re attending school far from home. Additionally, the academic pressure of college can be overwhelming for some students. With big exams and important papers due, it’s easy to feel like you’re constantly under stress.

The Social Scene

Another factor that can contribute to mental health problems in college students is the social scene. For many students, college is the first time they’re living away from home and surrounded by peers their own age. This can be both exciting and intimidating. There may be pressure to party or drink alcohol, which can lead to problems down the road. Additionally, students may struggle to find their place in the social hierarchy of college life. All of these factors can contribute to feelings of anxiety or depression.

What Can Parents Do?

If you’re the parent of a college student, there are a few things you can do to help your child through this difficult time. First and foremost, it’s important to stay involved in your child’s life and be there for them when they need you. Additionally, you should encourage your child to seek out help if they’re struggling with their mental health. There are a number of resources available on and off campus, such as counseling services or support groups. Finally, you should make sure you’re staying up-to-date on the latest news and research about college mental health so that you can be prepared to help your child if they need it.

The mental health crisis among college students is real and parents need to be aware of the signs of stress and anxiety in their children. If you suspect your child is struggling, don’t hesitate to reach out for help from campus resources or professionals specializing in adolescent mental health. By being involved and informed, you can make sure your child gets the help they need during this challenging time in their lives.

You’re not alone if you’re feeling overwhelmed about returning to school. The stress of a new school year can be tough to manage, but there are ways to make it easier on yourself. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some stress relief tips that can help make the transition back to school a little bit easier. We’ll also talk about how to deal with anxiety during this time. Follow these tips, andyou’ll be well on your way to a successful semester!

One of the most important things you can do to reduce stress is to plan. This means getting your supplies ready early, mapping out your schedule, and knowing what to expect in each of your classes. Doing some of the work ahead of time will make you feel more prepared and less stressed when the school year begins.

It’s also important to take time before the semester starts. Make sure you get enough rest so that you’re feeling refreshed and ready to tackle whatever comes your way. And don’t forget to eat healthily! A nutritious diet will help improve your mood and energy levels, which are essential for dealing with stress.

Lastly, stay positive and remember that you’re capable of succeeding. It’s also helpful to talk to someone who understands what you’re going through, like a friend or family member. And finally, don’t hesitate to seek professional help if your anxiety affects your life.

For Parents  

Tips to Ease Your Child’s Back-to-School Anxiety

  • A week or two before school, start preparing children for the upcoming transition by resuming school-year routines, such as setting a realistic bedtime and selecting tomorrow’s clothes.
  • Arrange to play dates with one or more familiar peers before school starts. Research shows that the presence of a typical peer during school transitions can improve children’s academic and emotional adjustment.
  • Visit the school before the school year begins, rehearse the drop-off and spend time on the playground or inside the classroom if the building is open. Have your child practice walking into class while you wait outside or down the hall.
  • Come up with a prize or a rewarding activity that the child could earn for separating from mom or dad to attend school.
  •  Validate the child’s worry by acknowledging that, like any new activity, starting school can be hard but soon becomes easy and fun.

With these stress relief tips in mind, you’ll be ready to face the new school year confidently! Just take things one step at a time and focus on caring for yourself. You got this!

Do you feel like you’re constantly under pressure? Do you have trouble winding down and relaxing after a long day? If so, you’re not alone. According to the American Psychological Association, stress is one of the most common mental health concerns in the United States. Fortunately, there are many ways to relax instantly and calm your nerves. In this blog post, we will discuss six science-based strategies for relaxation!

Meditation helps with relaxation.

Meditation allows us to observe our thoughts and emotions in a detached, non-judgmental way. Meditating for as little as 10 minutes daily can instantaneously reduce your stress and anxiety. Studies have discovered that meditation can not only help reduce stress, but regular meditation can also minimize the risk of cardiovascular disease.


Listen to Music and play your favorite tunes.

According to a 2017 study, “a minimum of 20 min of music listening” can lower stress levels remarkably. Another 2015 study found that listening to Music is highly effective in reducing stress.

The research stated, “Results revealed that mere music listening was effective in reducing emotional stress levels. The most profound effects were found when ‘relaxation’ was stated as the reason for Music listening, with subsequent decreases in subjective stress levels and lower cortisol concentrations.”


Try Hydrotherapy

Splashing some cold water on your face and pulse points can help you cool your body temperature and make you feel energized. Running cold water or putting ice on your wrists can help you calm down quickly as major arteries run through the wrists.

Get some sun.

Step out of your home or office for a while and feel the warm sun on your skin. Vitamin D from the sunshine can lift your mood instantly.

Take a quick walk.

Getting some fresh air and moving your body for just 10 minutes can clear your head and make you feel ready for the tasks ahead.

Chew gum.

Chewing gum can help you keep stress away and enhance your productivity and mood.

Stress can have a major impact on our health and well-being, but thankfully there are plenty of ways to relax instantly. The science-based strategies we’ve outlined in this post should help you get started on finding some peace and tranquility in your life. If you’re looking for more assistance in managing stress or would like help incorporating some of these relaxation techniques into your daily routine, don’t hesitate to contact us. We specialize in helping people live their best lives and would be happy to provide guidance and support for reducing stress and achieving optimal wellness.

By Sarah Cody, WTNH.com

MERIDEN, Conn. (WTNH) — High school seniors across the state are facing a new kind of challenge in the age of pandemic as they get ready to go to college: how to tour a campus while adhering to social-distancing precautions.

“I applied to 10 schools,” says Aiden Annino, a senior at Platt High School in Meriden who recently narrowed his choices down to three colleges in Rhode Island but wasn’t able to go back to those campuses due to the pandemic.

“It was definitely tough not being able to visit those schools…was a huge effect, but they were offering a lot of online activities that helped me narrow down my options,” Annino said.

Turning to tech has enabled teens to somewhat get a feel for their potential “fit” at particular schools.

Quinnipiac University was supposed to host prospective students in late March. “Instead of having them on campus, we hosted them virtually,” explained Vice President for Enrollment Management, noting the university held video chats and online panels. “We had about 9,000 visitors between Thursday and Sunday when those events went live.”

Administrators, faculty, and current students were available to answer questions about everything from classes to dorms to activities.

But, Sykes understands, these are unprecedented times. “I can’t imagine the frustration that students are going through,” he says.

“They’re also dealing with the fact they had an abrupt end to their senior year,” says Marc Lehman, founder of U Are Heard, who holds online counseling for college-aged kids. He’s hearing a lot about this issue.

“It’s a big deal, one that deals with finances, emotions,” he says, adding that this unusual time could lead to gap years or transfers. “It may, it may.”

Annino decided to attend Johnson & Wales University. He’s confident it’s the right decision and, certainly, time will tell: “I am taking this one step at a time. I think that’s all we can do right now.”

Quinnipiac University is continuing to provide video chats and online panels. Click here to see the Admitted Student Experience. And, like many schools, it has extended the freshman enrollment deadline to June 1st.