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World Mental Health Day: The best ways to take care of yourself at King’s

It’s okay to ask for help, no matter what you’re going through

The theme for world mental health day this year is “mental health is a universal human right” and it marks a good time to reflect on the year so far.

Give yourself credit for how far you’ve come. As the weather starts to get colder and the nights become darker, it’s not uncommon for the general excitement of the new academic year to be worn down and the reality of life as a student to set in – living away from home, navigating life in London and generally being pushed to experience new things.

Take time for yourself

As the deadlines start piling up and the weekly budget becomes smaller, it is important to make time for yourself in the week. It could be going on a coffeebreak and trying out a new pastry, listening to a new podcast or making a comfort meal with your flatmates.

Finding a balance in student life can be one of the hardest things to do. There always seems to be another party to go to or another essay to submit, but building good habits and getting enough sleep is a good place to start finding a balance.

Get active

It’s easy to feel too busy to look after your physical wellbeing. After a day of studying the last thing most people want to do is go to the gym, but sometimes getting those endorphins from exercise is just what is needed.

King’s Sports and Wellness offer student memberships to gyms in both London Bridge and Strand Campus which could be a great opportunity to relieve some stress of the day before heading home. Or if social activity is more your thing, King’s BeActive offers a range of activities including pilates, salsa, badminton and pole.

Open the conversation

Talking about our feelings can be scary, emotional vulnerability isn’t something that comes naturally. However, it often feels like a weight lifted when we talk about what’s been troubling us with people you trust. Whether this be friends, house mates or professionals at King’s, every conversation helps. More times than not, I have found that my friends are also struggling to keep up with classes and make time for the things they enjoy.

King’s offers a variety of mental health support for its students. Speaking from personal experience, once you’ve reached out for support it will be provided. From faculty wellbeing advisors to King’s counselling, there is always someone to speak to when things are feeling difficult. King’s also offers an online support service called ‘Togetherall‘ that can be accessed 24/7 for when you want to have an anonymous and confidential chat.

Be kind to yourself

University can be an overwhelming experience and there is no right way to approach mental health, but there are little things we can do to look after ourselves and our happiness. The main thing is to avoid being too harsh on yourself.

You can find help online and resources for your mental health through King’s here or through crisis support here.

If you or someone you know is struggling at the moment, please speak to someone or contact Samaritans on 116 123 at any time. You can also contact Anxiety UK on 03444 775 774, Mind on 0300 123 3393, Calm (Campaign against living miserably) on 0800 58 58 58, and Student Minds online here