Feeling blue? Taking care of yourself at university

Posted in: Accommodation Help, Student Life, University Life

Student stress

Written by Catalina Constantin (3rd year Journalism & Media student at DMU)

It’s that time of year when a lot is going on such as a holiday from university and spending time with family and friends. You might be worried about your schedule, money, or keeping up with your work. You don’t have to deal with whatever is troubling you on your own. It’s easy to lose sight of ourselves at this time of year.

Stress and mental health are inextricably linked. It can affect us in a variety of ways. What one person perceives as a difficult situation may be of little importance to another. Not all stress is harmful. Small amounts of tension might help you accomplish things in some instances.

There are no right ways to go about life. Be patient but persistent. What works for some will not work for others. What matters is to try to meet your needs to enjoy life efficiently. It’s not easy.

We all have our bad days and thoughts. You need to be able to filter through those thoughts.

Speak with a friend or family member! If you need support, don’t be hesitant to ask for it. Keep an eye on how you’re feeling and don’t be afraid to contact your GP if things get too hard to bear.

The first things I check when I’m having a rough day are my sleeping schedule, food, and water intake. Listen to your body. Nourish yourself. A beneficial diet to your physical health is equally relevant to your mental health. Take breaks. Allocate time to wind down.

If I don’t have enough free time, I would usually consider a shower, stretching, going for a short walk, or doing some housework. Spending time in nature always helps. Regular exercise improves your self-esteem, ability to focus, sleep, and feel better.

Mindfulness is a helpful practice when it comes to valuing yourself. Care for your physical, psychological, and spiritual needs. Take time to breathe. Be calm. Clear your mind of thoughts. Grab a cup of your favourite tea and sit down. No phone, no distractions.

I sometimes imagine one of my favourite places where I feel at ease. Find your happy place. At times, I find mine in watching cheesy old film series on repeat while eating chocolate.

I’m trying journaling lately. It’s important to get in touch with your inner self. Start each day by writing several things you are grateful for or make a list of things you like about yourself. We need to try training our brains to find beauty in simple things.

Write down your thoughts. It doesn’t matter how messy or random your ideas are. Whatever you need to do, find a way to help your mind and energy to take a better turn. Learn how to be proud of what you have achieved. Pat your back.

Surround yourself with good people. Set healthy boundaries. Party sensibly around deadlines. Try not to let yourself do what you would advise against others.

Who’s going to prioritise you if not yourself? Leave the self-judgement on the side. Don’t compare to others. Trust yourself more. Most importantly, allow yourself to make mistakes. Talk to and about yourself with love and appreciation. Embrace the things that make you different.

Support is also available from your SU, check the links below:

Leicester Student Union Advice

De Montfort Student Union Advice

Photo by Joice Kelly on Unsplash

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