Self-love is trending worldwide and the internet is full of useful tips to feel better about yourself and help your mental wellbeing. However, we can’t all afford to have bubble baths and new nails every week. So here are a few of the more practical aids I have discovered during my time at Roehampton; even if they are a little less aesthetically pleasing.
Clear out the clutter
Yes, tidying your room is a bore and sometimes we really can’t be bothered, but cleaning and getting clutter out of sight to make clear spaces has been proven to help reduce anxiety. Even if it means shoving all the clothes from your floor under the bed or into the wardrobe; sometimes out of sight really is out of mind. I always start with my desk, as a tidy desk makes it easier to sit down and be productive, instead of making the excuse of not having a space to work at. Doing work on my bed always turns into watching show after show on Netflix, not great for my productivity.
This may not make sense to a lot of the night owls here but opening your curtains and allowing natural sunlight in is a lot better than living under artificial light. It can be a major mood changer, trust me I didn’t realise how much of a change it made until I started doing it. Just remember to shut them again when it comes to getting changed.
Learn to love green
I’m not talking about recycling either, though that’s never a bad thing. The colour green is said to be calming to the mind and having a small plant on your desk or windowsill is good for your physical and mental wellbeing. Cacti are great, low maintenance, cheap and trending. I have 3.
Having Richmond Park close by is another perk of Roehampton. Taking a walk around even if it’s to the café and back will also improve your wellbeing. In fact walking in nature is now being prescribed by doctors in Japan to help mental wellbeing. Here you can get your dose without a prescription.
Mental health isn’t something a lot of us find easy to talk about. It is a difficult subject to understand and, for many, a private affair. I hear about students brushing it off as normal, therefore unimportant. Everyone else has it worse than me, right? But handling it yourself isn’t always the best option.
Run by the Roehampton Wellbeing Team, these weekly group sessions are free to join and leave as you wish. Based around creativity and fitness, these sessions include everything from colouring to yoga. So if you struggle to motivate yourself to work on your wellbeing alone or just want some help on a particular week, you can go and make friends and have fun while taking care of your mental wellbeing.
Always remember mental illness is not a weakness and talking about it is nothing to be ashamed of. Connect with those around you and talk to friends face-to-face, be present. Don’t isolate yourself and never be afraid to ask for help. Tutors and flat reps are able to contact the wellbeing team on your behalf if you ask and don’t want to take that first step alone.