Happy New Year!


  • How to Make the Most of Mental Wellness Month

  • Ideas for Healthy New Year's Resolutions

    • Drink more water
    • Avoid alcohol and drugs
    • Exercise a little bit each day (even walking a few more steps and stretching can count!)
    • Get plenty of sleep
    • Join a club or start up a new activity/hobby
    • Practice self-care
      • Skin care routine
      • Go for a walk, do yoga, meditate, etc.
      • Take time for yourself
    • Use more positive self-talk
    • Take a break once a week from social media or work to reduce screen time
    • Meet with a counselor
    • Volunteer
    • Declutter your room and donate old clothes/objects you no longer use or wear
    • Learn to say "no"
      • Advocate for yourself
      • Learn what your boundaries are and how to set them
    • Practice gratitude
    • Learn new coping skills to ease stress and anxiety

    How to Make Your New Year's Resolutions Stick

    • Dream BIG and make the goals personal to you!
      • Your goals should be something that you really want...not something someone else tells you to focus on, or something you are excited about!
    • Break that big dream into small, manageable steps.
      • It can be very overwhelming to focus on achieving a big goal and can make you give up pretty quickly.
      • Be specific in terms of the small...baby...tiny steps you need to take to achieve that larger goal.
    • Try to understand the "why" behind the goal.
      • Why is this your new year's resolution?
      • Look at the pluses to achieving this goal...do they outweigh the minuses? 
      • Understanding why you thought of the goal and why it is important to you will help you to stick with it longer.
    • Commit fully to this goal by writing it down or verbalizing it.
      • Find your support system who can help you achieve this goal or hold you accountable.
    • Give yourself praise consistently.
      • Positive self-talk and praise is important in keeping yourself motivated towards achieving your goals!
    • Learn from the past.
      • Try not to see failure as a characteristic or personality trait, but rather as a learning opportunity! 
      • If something did not work last time, adjust your approach and learn from it...mistakes made are lessons learned.
    • Give thanks for what you do.
      • Forget the saying "practice makes perfect" because nothing in life is "perfect." Instead, remember this: "practice makes progress."
      • Recognize and be thankful for putting yourself first and making progress in the right direction.

  • My name is Ashley Kortenhaus and I am the Mental Health Coordinator (MHC) at Monmouth Regional High School. This is my third year at MRHS, but before joining the Falcon family I worked for 4 years at an alternative school for at-risk youth and students with disabilities.  I graduated from Monmouth University where I earned my BA in Psychology and Sociology, MSEd in Educational Counseling, and Post-Graduate Certificate in Professional Counseling.  I am a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of New Jersey and Nationally Certified Counselor with an additional certification in School Counseling.  I recently completed three other certifications to enhance student support services: Certified Clinical Trauma Professional-Level II, Child and Adolescent Trauma Professional and a certificate in Dialectical Behavior Therapy.  Welcome to my website, where you can learn more about the mental health services available to students at MRHS, as well as access resources available for students, families, and staff. For more information, questions, and concerns, you can contact me at the following:

    • Email: akortenhaus@monmouthregional.net
    • Phone: (732) 542-1170 x.1157
    • Fax: (732) 542-5815
    • Room #: 402

    The mental health services at Monmouth Regional High School have been designed and organized to assist students with their personal, social, emotional, and behavioral challenges. There are many reasons that a student may reach out or be referred for mental health counseling: anxiety, depression, interpersonal/peer conflicts, trauma, behavioral outbursts, ADHD, LGBTQ+, personality disorders, teen issues, eating disorders, autism spectrum disorder, self-esteem, stress, relationship issues, spirituality, family conflict, domestic violence, divorce, oppositional defiance, etc. Substance use/abuse concerns should be referred to our Student Assistance Counselor (SAC), Dara Jarosz.  You can view her website HERE for more information.

    The MHC provides in-school assessment, crisis intervention, counseling, and referral services to students who may be experiencing personal, family, and/or peer difficulties (such as those described above). My primary goal is to support students and assist them with managing their mental health and personal challenges to maximize their success in school. In addition to individual counseling, the MHC and SAC also offer groups depending on the needs of the school community.

    If you are currently experiencing a mental health crisis, please call 911, visit your nearest emergency room, or call PerformCare at 1-877-652-7624.