The NHS Moodzone lists just five simple things that you can do that will boost your wellbeing which will help you feel happier and more positive about life.
Strengthening your relationships with your family, friends, colleagues and neighbours can improve your sense of belonging and self-worth. Here are some simple ideas for making time to develop these relationships:
- Have a break from studying and arrange to meet a friend you haven’t seen in a while
- Make phone and video calls to your friends and family; it’s very easy to get into the habit of texting or emailing people
- Speak to someone new today
- Have lunch with a course mate
Chevening will provide a lot of opportunities throughout the year to attend events to meet new people and develop your networks.
Being active is not just great for your physical health and fitness, it’s also been shown to be great for your mental wellbeing. This doesn’t mean you need to spend hours in the gym; find fun physical activities you can do with friends and will enjoy more!
Here are some ideas:
- Take a walk and invite friends – explore a new part of town or join a group walk (for example the Ramblers)
- Try a health and fitness challenge, for example Couch to 5k
- Do some active volunteering such as Green Gym or Good Gym and make a difference whilst getting active
- Stretch, strengthen and relax by going to a yoga or pilates class, or try YouTube for a free, convenient alternative
You’re already studying hard but why not try adding some fun, new skills to boost your confidence and self-esteem? Here are some of our suggestions:
- Learn to cook a healthy new dish that you’ve never made before. Search for some recipes online and share your new dish with friends
- Sign up for a short course on something that you’re interested in but have never done before. You can find lots of free online courses, for example: www.futurelearn.com
- Visit a gallery, museum, or place and learn more about a period in history or a person who is of interest to you
- Make time for your hobbies. From sports to knitting, make sure you take time out to do these
Give to others
What we do and the impact we have can have a big impact on mental wellbeing. Giving to others and working towards shared goals can make you feel happier and more satisfied with life. As well as volunteering, here are some small things you can do to help make a big difference:
- Phone a friend or family member who could use some support or cheering up
- Ask a course or housemate how they are and really listen to the answer
- Help a stranger who you can see is struggling, for example someone struggling with a pushchair
- Say thank you to someone for something they have helped you with
- Check out the volunteering opportunities at your university or in your Students’ Union
Chevening offers a range of events specifically to provide volunteering opportunities so keep a look out for these if you’re interested.
Mindfulness is about paying more attention to the present moment. This includes your own thoughts, feelings, and mood as well as the world around you. Being mindful of ourselves can help us notice the way we are behaving and the patterns of our thoughts.
For more tips on being mindful see this NHS website.
- Take notice of the things you do on a daily basis and the sensations that they create
- Make a note of your thoughts and feelings by keeping a diary or writing a journal
- Try something new to help you notice the world differently, like taking a different route to class