Stress Awareness Day

Finding the balance after Fresher’s Week

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It is sometimes difficult to keep the balance right in terms of work, play and lifestyle. One area where that is particularly true is for those of you who are transitioning or returning to study after Fresher’s Week. It might even be that it’s the first time away from home, and reality has just set in.

With National Stress Awareness day just having arrived, we thought it made sense to give readers out there a few pointers in how to cope, especially coming on the end of our recent ‘back to school’ campaign.

Once the novelty of the first few days of University has worn off, you’re flying. Life is good. You’re free. But then you realise that this is your life for the next three years. Your mental health wavers.

Something requires your focus, you realise you’re meant to be juggling all this new stuff while also writing essays. This is when the trouble starts. For something that’s sold as a non-stop party fun-zone, university can be a huge bag of balls, and having a mental illness while you try to successfully complete your higher education and also make friends and also find yourself on a spiritual level and also have good sexual experiences?

So here are 4 ways to take care of your brain health when the buzz of Fresher’s week eventually wears off.

  • Look into your university’s wellbeing or mental health services

Most universities will have special services and resources for students suffering from mental illness. Whether you have an established diagnosis and a history seeking help, or if you’re brand new to the whole Feeling Like Everything is Endless Darkness thing – these resources are meant for you. Do your research and see what your University offers in terms of mental health resources. They might be able to set you up with a counselor, or put you in touch with other groups on campus that might be able to help.

  • Reconnect with old friends

It’s easy to get caught up in the rush of meeting new people. But this has its limits, and sometimes you need to remember to reach out to the people that have had your back through the tough times. Remind yourself that your support system goes beyond this new city and these new people.

  • Plan a trip home

Going home for the first time after starting university is bizarre. Everything’s so clean. There are no sticky playing cards on the table, no three-day-old kebab by the sink. It is nice to go home to a place where actual adults live, and where ironing happens, and spaghetti bolognese isn’t eaten out of a pan. If you have the money and a weekend free, schedule in a little return trip. Go see your grandma. Go press your face into your cat. Go back to where you’re safe and looked after.

  • Do some physical exercise – channel your ‘wellness’

Telling depressed people to exercise is stupid and ridiculous. If you’re physically able and can bring yourself to exercise, then give it a go. Schedule it in. Take advantage of your student discount and get a gym membership, or sign up to a student Zumba class.

If you would like more helpful tips to help you transition, cope or just get some useful advice from the Liferaft team then why not sign up today – drop us a line at

Why not check out:

The Mind Body Spirit Wellbeing Festival is taking place at Birmingham NEC: