Evidence suggests that there are five steps that we can take to improve our mental health and wellbeing. Five ways to Be Well to help you feel more positive by increasing satisfaction and happiness and reducing stress and anxiety.


BE ACTIVE

Being physically active is a great way to improve you physical wellbeing, emotional wellbeing and to meet new people! It can also help to reduce stress and be a lot of fun. Some good ideas include:

  • Working out at the SAWC or Camden Gym. Why not try one of their free classes?!
  • Joining an RVCSU society. There’s a sport for everyone and additional ones through University of London
  • Getting off the tube or bus a stop early to walk to your destination
  • Taking the stairs instead of the lift

BE AWARE

Pay attention to the present moment – your thoughts, feelings and the world around you. Being mindful of ourselves in this way can help to foster positive mental health. With our busy lives, it's easy to get caught up in the moment but here are some ideas for how you can 'take notice':

  • Put time aside to enjoy your meals
  • Take a walk on a nearby nature trail
  • Be curious about the world around you
  • Reflect on a conversation you have had
  • Check out local arts and culture

BE CURIOUS

Learning about the world doesn’t just happen in the classroom. Asking questions and delving into new ideas and skills can help you develop a flexible mind set for problem solving and help you understand how you learn. University life presents lots of opportunities to be curious such as:

  • Learn a new hobby
  • Experiment in the kitchen with a new recipe
  • Learn a new instrument or dance
  • Check out a TED talk or HOWcast on YouTube
  • Rediscover on old interest

BE CONNECTED

Connecting with and being valued by other people is a basic and fundamental human need that contributes to good mental wellbeing. It is important to try to maintain good relationships with others for a number of reasons but ultimately it will help to improve your overall mental and physical health. With this in mind, below are a few tips that might help:

  • Make firm plans to meet with family/friends
  • Arrange to do regular activities with a friend
  • Find out about volunteering opportunities in the local area (do-it.org/)
  • Meet people with similar interests by joining groups or societies (www.rvcsu.org.uk/clubs-socs/)
  • Take up new hobbies

BE KIND

Individuals who have a greater interest in helping others are more likely to rate themselves as happy.

Research into actions for promoting happiness has shown that committing an act of kindness once a week over a six-week period is associated with an increase in wellbeing. Here are a few tips to develop this habit:

Make someone a cup of tea or get them a coffee

  • Smile and say ‘Hi’
  • Be a listening ear
  • Support a friend in getting help when they are struggling
  • Offer up your seat to someone less able than you
  • Be a study buddy
  • Cook something to share with your housemates/friends
  • Do something fun
  • Do something you find calming

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