Making time for mental wellbeing
It’s no secret that the last year has been quite stressful for everybody. Being overwhelmed at and with Uni can happen easily anyway, with the workload and stress that goes along with it, but now, feeling a bit lost and confused about the state of the world seems to be the norm. Which is why it is so important, possibly more than ever, to take care and check in with yourself on how you are doing.
Now that we are all more or less stuck in front of screens a lot of the time and screen fatigue is a common experience, I try to close my laptop as soon as I can after Uni has finished and do something offline for at least half an hour. Most of the time it ends up being more than that, though, as it is quite relaxing and grounding, too – just being in the space that I'm actually physically in.
As a person prone to anxiety, especially as it worsens when I feel stuck indoors, going through several lockdowns has not exactly been a piece of cake! But walks have always been a true lifesaver to me. Even if you're not much of an outdoorsy person, fresh air and seeing some of your corner of the world does relieve stress and gives the brain a bit of a break. Cornwall is the perfect place for that, with so much beautiful nature, not to mention the beaches, and even just town to explore!
Take one step at a time
It's probably one of the most overused phrases you can hear but taking it one step at a time can absolutely help in getting through a rough patch. When it all gets too much sometimes, I have to keep telling myself that I do not need to worry about what will happen in a few months or next year or when I will have these future things figured out, because I do not have to know yet.
Especially right now, with literally everything on the planet being at least partially unstable and uncertain, there is no use in worrying about what would be or will be or what to do if the worst case happens, because none of us know. There is a safety in that. You just have to do what, and as much as, you can right now. It is no use overwhelming yourself further.
Walks have always been a true lifesaver to me. Even if you are less of an outdoorsy person, fresh air and seeing some of your corner of the world does relieve stress and gives the brain a bit of a break. Cornwall is the perfect place for that.
Be kind to yourself
In a generation as self-critical and hyper-aware as this one is, it’s often hard to give yourself a break; to show yourself a little kindness and not just look at what hasn’t worked out so far. I do try to stay on top of the news, but sometimes it's just really quite depressing. When I feel worse after checking my phone than I did before, I know it's time to just focus on myself for a moment. Or at least also search for good stuff that is happening right now – I regularly google ‘positive things happening in the world’, just to cheer myself up, haha!
Staying connected with your world outside of Uni is important, too, whether we’re in the midst of a pandemic, or not. Hearing what’s going on at home, or just talking to other friends or family, can work as a distraction or even just a reminder that you are not alone. And the Wellbeing services at Falmouth are always there, too, if you need help with anything, or just want to talk to somebody.