Mental Health Day – Making Small Changes

By Ivana Drdakova, Studying English and Scottish Literature

If you are struggling please contact our counselling service at counselling@abdn.ac.uk or in emergency please contact your GP. If you need somebody to talk to you can contact our Student Aberdeen University Nightline or the Samaritans.
Disclaimer: This blog also contains mentions of sexual violence.

The next few months can be arguably the most stressful months of the second semester. The deadlines are fast approaching, and the exams are approaching even faster. It is easy to get stressed out, fall behind on revision and in the end struggle even more. Most students experience this problem.

Even though these few tips are not the resolution to everything you may struggle with I hope it will hope you at least to some extent.

Environment

Making small changes in my environment usually helps me to focus on the task that I need to finish. For example, I know that I can focus better when my table is clean and empty of any distractions. For you, it might be that the environment that helps your revision and in turn mental health is little bit of noise – take your books to a small coffee shop and revise there!
Adjust the environment around yourself in a way that you know will make you happy and feel most productive.

Lifestyle

Often making little changes to your lifestyle can be a great step towards improving your mental health. Making efforts towards eating a healthier diet by including more nutritious food in your meals and regular exercise is also recommended – and yes, walking on the beach can count as exercise.

University

Support & Report tool & Sexual violence support group

The University has launched an anonymous online reporting tool for sexual violence and harassment. Find out more about Support & Report here. Further, AUSA’s CASE organises support groups for survivors of such behaviours where there is a professional help present. CASE also has various workshops on different topics of sexual education.

Counselling Service

As previously mentioned, our university offers free counselling services. While there is usually a long waiting list, once you get in, you will be able to talk to counsellor and get things off your chest. The Counselling Service is located on Dunbar Street (opposite Edward Wright building) and they have a small library with self-help books that you can borrow.

Support Services

Our university also offers a range of support services available via appointment. Support services are located on the second floor of the student union (at the end of hall of the Careers Service). Some of the services available are financial support, disabilities and disability provisions, visa, mental health and more.

Support Apps and Services

One of the good things that you can do to improve your mental health is to be a more organised person. If you need to revise, you can use apps like My Study Plan on iOS or Study Plan (Android), use diaries if you like writing things down on paper and plan ahead – everything from your essays to your free time.

Mind Shift is an app for those who struggle with anxiety. While it is not the full cure, it is something that can help you to certain extent on daily basis. The app involves quick tips on how to deal with anxiety but also sounds that can help you to calm yourself down.

Big White Wall is the perfect tool if you do not like or do not have time to talk to real-life.

Counsellor – it is available 24/7 and best of all – it is paid for by the university.

 

Feeling Good app is approved by NHS and is for free. This app takes you through exercises that can help build re-silent mind set. The service is pre-paid by the university and the log-in details are: abdnuni2 for username, and the password is the word: positive.

This list is definitely not exhaustive, but I hope that at least some of the things can help you have a nice end of this second semester.

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