Friday 16 February 2024

Finding support at university

The Editorial Team have come together to share their thoughts on finding support at university.

- Student Minds Blog Editorial Team

⭐ How could you reach out for support? ⭐
  • Taylor: Reaching out can seem the most daunting step, especially when you have to figure out how to put your feelings into words. But this can be made easier, with a solid and safe network of people you trust and can talk to when times are tough, or by knowing who you can reach out to professionally at your university. 
  • Emily A: It can be really challenging to 'put yourself out there' and find new circles to get to know. If you're looking for support, I would recommend going with your gut and seeking support from those you have established and trusted networks with. They are likely to be the best placed to know you and how best to help you in tricky times.
  • Madeleine: Making the first step in reaching out can be difficult, remember to take your time and be proud of yourself for doing it, it's not always easy. Find someone you feel comfortable with to start the conversation, maybe a friend who's been supportive in the past. Know that while they might not have all the answers, your support network can help guide you to support and help you along the way.

⭐ How could you support a friend? ⭐
  • Taylor: The simplest thing I was ever told to do was just listen. No comments or questions or judgements or opinions... simply just listening and making sure your friend knows that you are there to support them.
  • Emily A: Sometimes it can be tempting to 'fill the void' and continue to make it known that you are there. Whilst intentions might be great, this can sometimes do the opposite of good for those you are trying to look out for - sometimes giving time and space can be just as beneficial, allowing your friends to bridge that final part and make a move towards you for support can give them a much-needed sense of control in a difficult time. It really means the world to know somebody is there to catch them if they fall, whether you need to do any catching at all is another thing entirely. 
  • Madeleine: The most important thing you can do as a friend of someone who is struggling with their mental health is to reassure them that you are there for them, whatever they may be going through. Creating a safe space for them to talk about how they are feeling may make all the difference. You could send them a message to check in, ask if they want to grab a coffee or send them a postcard to remind them you're there. At the same time, if someone needs some space to feel better, it is important to allow them to come to you when they are ready. 

Can you think of any others? Share with the team - we'd love to hear from you!

Whether you are looking for support for your own mental health at university or supporting a friend, help is available.

Tuesday 6 February 2024

Embracing a New Chapter: My Ambitions and Aspirations for the New Year at University

Our author shares her thoughts and feelings about the new year and what her aims are.

- Anon

As the new year begins, I find myself standing at the threshold of a fresh chapter in my academic journey. The canvas of 2024 awaits, and with it, an array of ambitions and aspirations that I am eager to bring to fruition during my time at university. 

First and foremost, the advent of a new year invites reflection and the setting of goals. I believe in the power of resolutions, for they serve as guiding stars, illuminating the path toward personal and academic growth.

his year, my goals for university extend beyond the classroom. I aim to not only excel academically but also to engage more actively in extracurricular activities, fostering a well-rounded university experience. 

In approaching the task of adhering to new year goals, consistency becomes paramount. I've found that setting realistic and measurable objectives, breaking them down into smaller tasks, and regularly assessing my progress keeps me on track. 

This method not only aids in maintaining motivation but also allows for necessary adjustments to ensure success. As I step into 2024, I am also mindful of the importance of shedding old habits and embracing new ones. What I leave behind in 2023 are any lingering self-doubts and procrastination tendencies. 

  • I’m aiming to start my coursework earlier so that I don’t feel that much pressure when the deadline is coming. The new year provides an opportunity for a fresh start, and I am committed to cultivating habits that promote productivity, time management, and a healthy work-life balance. 
  • In terms of routines, 2024 holds the promise of structure and purpose. Establishing a daily routine that includes dedicated study time, breaks for self-care, and participation in campus activities will be instrumental in achieving a harmonious balance between academic and personal life. 
  • The arrival of the new year elicits a mix of excitement and anticipation within me. It symbolizes not only the beginning of a semester but also a chance to redefine and refine my academic and personal pursuits. While challenges may arise, the prospect of overcoming them fuels my determination to make the most of every opportunity the university offers. To maintain a positive outlook in January, a month that often brings the post-holiday blues, I engage in activities that uplift my spirits. 
  • Connecting with friends, setting aside time for hobbies, and practicing mindfulness through activities like meditation or journaling contribute to a positive mindset. 
  • Additionally, I remind myself of the fresh start the new year signifies, focusing on the potential for growth and accomplishments in the months ahead. 

In conclusion, the new year at university beckons with promises of growth, achievement, and self-discovery. By setting clear goals, cultivating positive habits, and maintaining a resilient attitude, I am poised to make 2024 a year of academic success and personal fulfillment. This new year I’m not going to let dark thoughts enter my mind when I’m stressed about university, I will get over them! I just want to succeed this final year of university!

Whether you are looking for support for your own mental health at university or supporting a friend, help is available.

We're on the lookout for new writers! If you have a story to share then get in touch with the Editorial Team.