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Five steps to wellbeing

Posted on 11 October 2020

We’re all facing challenging times, so it’s good to understand five simple steps that have been shown to support your wellbeing. While you are settling into University life, try to build these into your routine.

Five steps to wellbeing

1. Connect

Spend time with people who make you feel good.

Good relationships are important for your mental wellbeing. They can:

  • help you to build a sense of belonging and self-worth;
  • give you an opportunity to share positive experiences;
  • provide emotional support and allow you to support others.

Whether you live on or off campus, your college will provide you with a network of support, friendship, facilities and a full calendar of events and activities to ease you into university life.

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2. Keep learning

Try something different. Be open to new opportunities.

Research shows that learning new skills can also improve your mental wellbeing by:

  • boosting self-confidence and raising self-esteem;
  • helping you to build a sense of purpose;
  • helping you to connect with others.

Joining a society is a fantastic way to meet new people and try something new. Our Students' Union supports over 200 student societies at York.

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3. Be active

Get moving - do what you can when you can.

Being active is not only great for your physical health and fitness. Evidence also shows it can also improve your mental wellbeing by:

  • raising your self-esteem;
  • helping you to set goals or challenges and achieve them;
  • causing chemical changes in your brain which can help to positively change your mood.

Being active doesn’t have to mean competitive sport, or a visit to the gym. Try exploring our campuses, perhaps following our Campus Tree Trail, combining it with some wildlife spotting, or a spot of art appreciation.

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4. Take notice

Be mindful, be aware, be curious.

Paying more attention to the present moment can improve your mental wellbeing. This includes your thoughts and feelings, your body and the world around you. Some people call this awareness "mindfulness". Mindfulness can help us enjoy life more and understand ourselves better. Find out how mindful breathing can help you reduce stress and anxiety, help with focus and promote sleep.

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5. Give

Help yourself by helping others.

Research suggests that acts of giving and kindness can help improve your mental wellbeing by:

  • creating positive feelings and a sense of reward;
  • giving you a feeling of purpose and self-worth;
  • helping you connect with other people.

It can be just a small act of kindness, perhaps taking time to check in with a friend, sending a supportive text, or even making someone a cuppa! However, here at York we have many opportunities to help others.

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Your health and wellbeing

If you want to explore health and wellbeing more, or feel that you need some support, please visit our health and wellbeing pages.

Health and wellbeing