We all struggle with poor mental health at some points of our lives and this impacts our everyday lives in more ways than we can imagine. So it’s important to take a step back and reflect.
Signs of poor mental health
- Difficulties leaving your area, your house, your room
- Struggling to communicate (reply to emails, texts, calls)
- Being too quiet / too loud
- Being regularly late
- Over posting / lack of posting on social media
- Substance misuse
- Lack of attendance / Cancelling plans / inconsistent
- Extreme Emotions (Happy – Tearful – Angry)
- Insomnia / Sleep problems
- Excessive worrying
- Lack of Concentration / Energy
- Suicidal thoughts and actions
- Loss of interest in people and daily activities
- Anger and irritability
- Reckless behaviour
- Aches and pains
- Loneliness and isolation
- Struggles to look after yourself (cook, clean, wash, personal hygiene)
How to deal with them
Everyone can get better it just takes time, here are some tips and tricks to try out.
- Break down your aims and objectives into small manageable chunks, because we all get scared by big tasks. You are more likely to follow through with smaller tasks.
- Rehearse what you say before you talk or write a draft email (If it helps) with a friend or professional
- Have a balanced diet, not a strict one. Don’t punish yourself if you cannot stick to it. Eat smaller meals and regular snacks to keep up your metabolism and energy levels.
- Drink plenty of ice cold water as keeps you fuller for longer and tricks your brain into thinking its fuller and improves your brain and liver function.
- Don’t overload and overburden yourself and take too much on as you will burn out fast and become more prone to poor physical and mental health.
- Prioritize and make lists and treat yourself when you’ve completed it so you have something to look forward to.
- Always be yourself and others will follow. Don’t try and fit in with the crowd. Don’t let anyone tell you that you are not good enough. Be bold and be different, keep your head up high.
- Find alternative ways of coping and healthy strategies to keep your mind off things to distract you (eg. Reading, art, drama, dance, singing)
- Be mindful of what you post online because it can have huge impact on you later on
- Check in with people as regularly as you can so that none is worried
- Go outside and get some fresh air, go for a walk to clear your mind because it helps
- Try and stick to a routine and use your time wisely because it goes quickly
- Speak to your lecturer, student health and wellbeing or another professional if you are in difficulty – it is their job to help you or signpost you to someone who can
- Have a healthy life balance, work hard and play hard and earn the rewards, it will be worth it in the end
- Be honest with your feelings and emotions and let it out with a heart to heart and a cuppa. Better out than in. Better to talk about it than let it bottle up and burst out one day.
- Do your research online and offline – there’s various tools out there to help
- Have lots of alarms and set your clock 15-30mins early so that you are never late
- Use your phone as a diary alongside a paper diary as a back-up so that you never lose your information
- Do three things that scare you everyday (do something different that you wouldn’t usually do) and you’ll notice the difference in your life
- Make the most of your time at university and all the facilities and services that are provided because you only get one chance to access it
Most importantly… whatever happens in your life, whatever hurdles you go through, just keep going and don’t give up. You will reach the light at the end of the tunnel… eventually so be patient.
If you’re struggling with your mental health, click here for places that can help.