It’s dark, it’s cold and you might still be about campus feeling a little lonely over the winter break. It can be a difficult time for numerous reasons; not being with your family, having deadlines, generally feeling low due to the changes in the weather or you may suffer from seasonal depression during this time.
What can I do to look after my wellbeing?
We have spoken to your VP Welfare Taran Baragwanath and Student’s with Disabilities Part-Time Officer Louisa Futcher who have given their top tips for looking after your wellbeing over the winter break.
- Space for you: be aware of the space you need and don’t feel guilty about taking it.
- The holidays can be a very hectic time, but make sure you make time for purely you; your needs, interests, time to decompress. Do things you enjoy: hobbies, socialising, reading and long baths are a good way to manage stressful times. Make sure you have an actual break from university work - you will burn out if you don’t!
- Just because you’re at home, don’t feel obligated to spend 100% of your time with family
- Your first holiday back from university can be very difficult. It’s hard to go from being independent to living with family again
- Take time out to reconnect with your family and friends from home
- Reach out to your university friends when you’re at home; FaceTime, texting, group chats are a great way to support each other from afar
- Have realistic expectations of your progress, if you have deadlines, make specific time to do work (and stick to it!)
[Taran Baragwanath, VP Welfare]
- Take time for yourself; remove yourself from toxic atmospheres if it’s negatively affecting you.
- If you have January deadlines, spread out your study/essay time so it makes it less stressful for you, don’t leave it last minute!
- Do something fun that you haven’t been able to do this term due to university work.
[Louisa Futcher, Disabled Students Officer]
I’m still on campus over the break and need some support, where’s open?
Not to worry, there are still going to be some services available over the winter break but this might be at reduced hours.
They are able to support students by providing free and confidential advice on various issues such as money, student conduct, housing and much more. They are located on square 3 and will be open over the break from Monday to Friday between 1pm to 4pm. To speak to an advisor or get in contact, click here. However, it is worth mentioning that they will not be open on the following days:
- Wednesday 19th December 2018
- Monday 24th December 2018 until Tuesday 1st January 2019
Student Services Hub
The university has a place where students can go for information and advice on many different aspects of your course and experience whilst at Essex. The opening hours will be 10am to 4pm on Monday to Friday during the winter break and they will be closed between the dates below:
- Saturday 22nd December 2018 until 1st January 2019
If you need to contact them, please visit the website.
Chat with Charlie
This is a free online service available to students at the University of Essex who are struggling to cope with their mental wellbeing and need someone to talk to. It is open all week between 6pm to 10pm. For more details or to speak with someone, click here.
Take care of yourself!