There are loads of small things that you can do every day that help maintain and improve your wellbeing at university. From getting enough sleep to eating a healthy diet and taking time out for activity and meeting friends, we really want you to take care of your physical and mental health while studying.

Students walk together in the fresh air at the Giant's Causeway

Student story: Looking after your wellbeing

Katie Morris studies psychology in Coleraine. Here, she shares her top tips for looking after your wellbeing during your time at Ulster University:

“Wellbeing is a term which has become increasingly popular. But what does wellbeing actually mean? I think wellbeing relates to feeling good about yourself, judging life positively and functioning well within everyday life.

Starting university can be an exciting yet challenging time for many. By prioritising my wellbeing, I found it easier to adapt to these new changes in my life and implement healthy and sustainable habits that I think will be invaluable throughout my degree.

Prioritising sleep

As much as you might like to pull an all-nighter to finish an almost-due assignment, I think it's important to prioritise sleep as a university student. The right amount of sleep will help you to stay focused and improve your concentration throughout your studies. I try to aim for about eight hours of sleep each night. There are loads of free sleep apps available to download online that could help you drift off.

Katie Morris

Eating well

A well-balanced diet will provide you with energy throughout the day, as well as help you stay healthy. It is also important to ensure that you keep hydrated. I like to create a meal plan for the week ahead, so I can avoid rushing for fast food and improve my food choices while cooking for myself at university. Look at websites like BBC Good Food for cheap, healthy recipe ideas.

Practicing self-care

Self-care enables us to check in on how we're feeling and take care of ourselves. Self-care also helps to prevent burnout. There are many ways of practicing self-care, and it is a good idea to explore what the best options for you are. Personally, I find mindfulness a great way to relax and wind-down after a busy day at university. Find out how to look after your mental health using mindfulness.

Connecting with people around you

University is a great opportunity to socialise with people and make new friends. Getting out there and connecting with others can be a fantastic way to develop your confidence and support your mental health. Some ways to meet new individuals at university include joining clubs, societies or attending Students’ Union events, which I like to go to with my friends. You can view upcoming events on the Student Guide.

Staying active

Exercise has been proven to be an important asset to both our general health and overall wellbeing. Ulster University has an array of sports clubs and activities which can help you stay active while at university. I love going to the gym after my lectures. I feel like exercising helps to reset my focus on the tasks I need to complete for the day, as well as getting to experience the satisfaction of completing a good workout!

Reaching out

While taking time to make changes like the above tips within our lives can help to improve our wellbeing, it is important to remember that it is ok to not feel ok. There are a number of support services available to you at Ulster University that you can access by contacting the Student Wellbeing Team."

Students walk together through the streets of Belfast

The Student Wellbeing Team

As Katie says, the Student Wellbeing Team is always here to help. They provide free and confidential advice and support for all sorts of concerns including dealing with stress and anxiety, money management, relationship issues and self-care. The Student Wellbeing Team can also help with:

Disability support

If you have a disability or additional study need such as dyslexia, ASD, a mental health condition or a long-term medical condition, the Student Wellbeing team can provide support to access reasonable adjustments to help with your studies, as well as guidance on any additional funded disability support available to you. Even if you got extra time in your exams at school, you should come and speak to Student Wellbeing to see what support you can get.

Financial wellbeing

If you're concerned about your finances, contact the Student Wellbeing team and they can help you develop a budget and manage your money so you can live within your means while studying. They can also offer guidance and information on other money concerns such as accessing student loans, bursaries, and access to financial support.

Contact the Student Wellbeing Team

You can contact the Student Wellbeing Team by dropping by the Hubs on each campus during opening hours or booking a confidential appointment using the contact details on the Student Wellbeing homepage.