Amelia Foy a second year Psychology student writes about keeping balance during this busy time of year.
Be Well Week: Don’t Feel Like Yourself?
We’re in the midst of deadlines, research projects, and more general life stresses – with so much going on as university students, it can be difficult to balance our responsibilities with our body and mind’s needs. As Be Well Week concludes, it’s a good time to focus on the areas of our lives that we are perhaps neglecting.
The five areas we are meant to keep in balance are: Be Active, Be Mindful, Be Connected, Be Healthy & Be You. Looking at them like this, it can feel daunting. How are we meant to keep so much in order, when our heads are already so busy? By taking it one step at a time; you’ll find if you get one aspect in order, the others seem to fall into place a lot easier when they come around.
The following are a few tips on Being You. At University, you may experience a lot of pressure to be a certain way, and this may make you feel bad about who you are as a person. Maybe you’re introverted, and would rather binge Netflix when everyone else is at Score. Maybe you can’t drink for religious or medical reasons – maybe you just don’t like it. Maybe you find yourself unable to study as much as you see your housemates studying. All of this is okay – and there’s definitely other people who you will get along with at University, just being yourself.
Join Societies - Societies are the perfect place the meet likeminded individuals. Into activism? Attend Amnesty or V-Team. What about art? Fine Arts and Photo Soc are available. Really love Harry Potter? There’s a Harry Potter society! There’s always somewhere to go to meet people, and this will get you out of the house. Visit the Students' Union Societies page for a full list.
Keep Up With Your Hobbies -This will keep you grounded when you feel stressed, and connect you with what you enjoy, no matter what that is. It will also help you express yourself! And if you don’t have a hobby, or your hobby is hard to maintain at University, take up something new: art, writing, hiking, baking… There’s a whole range of possibilities.
Keep In Touch With Family & Friends - Often we move away from familiarity when we go to University. When we aren’t used to our environment, things can feel confusing and daunting, and we might feel out-of-place. Remind yourself that you’re not alone – if you have good relationships with your family or friends, give them a call or send them a text. This will also keep you grounded, remind you of how loved you are just the way you are, and refocus you.
Look After Your Mental Health - When we stop feeling like ourselves, it often takes its toll on our mental wellbeing. We may feel like there is something wrong with us if we don’t fit in – like we aren’t good enough, smart enough, funny enough. But you are enough, just as you are, and you shouldn’t lose sight of that. On campus, there is a Counselling & Mental Health Team that you can apply for sessions with, and a Wellbeing Team that operates a drop-in service in 4W. If this feels too daunting, look up the sessions that Student Minds run for students.
Just doing these four things may help you in the long-run to keep hold of who you are (whilst also allowing you to grow as a person). Keep being you, and we wish you a happy, healthy Be Well Week.