Mental health is being more and more talked about, and its coming into our personal, academic and even working lives. Companies are being pushed to offer more health and well being services, especially after COVID forced everyone to be working at home, and universities are being called to improve their services. This means that you should also be paying attention to your own personal mental health and realising what you can do to help.
Our top tips to manage your mental health while studying:
- Find nature wherever you are. This can be going out into your garden, visiting a local park or going a bit further to national trust sites or open countryside areas.
- Bring nature to you. Sometimes, especially in busy town or city areas, it can be hard to find natural places so why not start bringing elements of nature into the home like plants or pots of herbs. If you have a balcony, you could also hang up a bird feeder.
- Exercise. This is a key one because it relieves stress and prevents build ups of anger, tiredness, and sadness. Exercise can also help you learn to set goals and achieve them.
- Connect with other people. Good relationships help you build a sense of belonging and provide emotional support. Take time each day to catch up with friends or arrange something with your family.
- Be mindful and pay attention to the present moment. It can help you enjoy life more and understand yourself better. It can positively change the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges.
- Help others. Whilst it is important to be thinking about your own mental wellbeing, helping others, through volunteering or community work, can actually help your feelings as well. If you don’t have time to fully volunteer, then try to do someone a favour every day.
Remember, you don’t have to do any of this alone! Reach out to friends, families or colleagues, and even use the welfare advice on the RUSU webpage (https://www.rusu.co.uk/advice/welfare/) that has a free wellbeing service for students if you are struggling with anything. Its natural to sometimes feel overwhelmed and anxious, especially with how everyone has had to be dealing with the COVID pandemic for over a year now, but by taking our top tips into account, you can do little things to help yourself.
Here are some resources for you to go to if you are struggling:
The University of Reading Counselling Service – https://www.reading.ac.uk/essentials/support-and-wellbeing/counselling-and-wellbeing
Together for Mental Wellbeing – https://www.together-uk.org/projects/berkshire-west-your-way/
Mental Health Charities like Hub of Hopes – https://hubofhope.co.uk/
And also, don’t forget your local GP.