We asked Portsmouth students what their top tips for looking after themselves are, and these are their answers.
1 | Reach out to a friend
The most popular tip from our students was to talk to someone. Whether it’s someone you met on your course, through a group or sports club, in halls, or a family member. Airing your thoughts in a non-judgemental space can be a massive help.
It can sometimes be hard knowing to listen to and support someone when they’re talking about difficult issues. The NHS has some useful guidance on how to be there for a friend experiencing mental health problems.
2 | Go outdoors
Stretching your legs and getting some headspace will almost always make you feel better. We’re lucky to have Southsea beach on our doorstep. It’s a great place to get a big deep breath of fresh sea air, even in the cooler weather. Or if you want to explore somewhere new, check out these 5 green spaces to explore in Portsmouth.
3 | Listen to music
Whether it’s putting on calming ocean sounds, your favourite band, or even playing instruments yourself, music is a great way to unwind and recharge. One student said, "When you're feeling anxious, blast your favourite music and focus on the lyrics and the beat."
4 | Get moving
Lots of you mentioned exercising, working out, or playing sports as a way to let off some steam and take your mind off things. Whether it’s getting a sweat on, or quietly moving and stretching with yoga, there’s lots to get involved in on campus at Ravelin Sports Centre.
5 | Eat a good meal
It’s easy to default to junk food and snacks when we’re not feeling great, but tucking into a good healthy meal can do wonders for feeling good about yourself. You could try an old favourite recipe, or some comfort food from back home. Even the process of preparing a meal can be quite calming and meditative.
6 | Other tips
Portsmouth students also mentioned:
- Painting or drawing - a creative activities are a great way to lift your mood and produce something you can enjoy later.
- Meditation - try the Headspace or Breathe apps for guided mindfulness activities.
- Take the time to look after yourself - “a hot shower, hair and skin care, and an early night”.
- Start a hobby that’s unrelated to your course - this can give you a break from study and work, and gives you the chance to meet new people.
- “Do something every day that makes you happy"
You Are Not Alone
Portsmouth Mental Health Hub is a phoneline and website that anyone living in the city aged 16 and over can call to get support for their mental health - including University students. They'll help you find free, confidential and impartial advice and support locally, including talking therapies, online support groups, and other resources.