Studying Happy and Staying Mindful: Our Top Ten Tips

Here at The Library, we’re keen on mindfulness and staying healthy during study. At a recent mindfulness session we had, we noted down some top tips for mindfulness. And as we descend into the academic term, we thought we’d share them with you. Take a look below.

By Ellie King, Ana Kedves and Dr Dean Howes

One: Stick with what you know

If a coming to university for the first time is a new and unnerving experience, maintaining some constant is great. Continue doing something that you’ve enjoyed before, as it’s a natural source of mindfulness.

Two: Try something new

However, university is a great place to try new things, stress and judgement free. There are so many activities around campus for you to enjoy, from sports clubs, exercise classes, pub quizzes and even food tasting events. It’s a great way to meet new people and will help you take that well-earned down time after a hard day of studying.

Three: Notice your surroundings

Warwick campus is a really beautiful place, and there are so many hidden woods and nature areas. Try and slow down a little and notice what is around you. Explore the campus, try working in a new building, visit some nature once in a while.

The University Campus is a great place to explore

Four: Get Organised

Staying organised is easiest when you start organised. Buy that planner, colour code your timetable, write down your due dates. The more we are organised outside of us, the more organised we will feel on the inside.

Five: Find your calm place

University can be full on, so find a place that’s peaceful for you and develop a habit of going there when you need some calm. This may be an outside spot, your bedroom, your favourite café. Associating it with feeling calm and mindful will help you get through those tough times.

Six: Plan to Slow Down

It’s easy for your schedule to get filled up very quickly, and it can be tempting to keep working to stay on top of things. It’s so important to build in some time to slow down and balance out all that hard work, even if it’s just half an hour.

Seven: Practice Wellbeing Techniques

Practice wellbeing techniques during less busy times. It’s a bit like training for a marathon, you want to start early and in more neutral situations and then build up gradually. This will bring strength to tackle challenges later on.

Eight: De-stress in the Day

You might be inclined to practice your mindfulness at the end of the day. However, it’s important to destress during the day. Don’t leave it until the evening as it may affect your sleep or ability to relax later on.

Nine: Sleep Well

Sleep is important, so look after it. Try to find a healthy sleep-wake rhythm that allows you to do what you want and feel well throughout the day

Ten: Self-care

We all handle our self-care in different ways. Commit to whatever it is that helps your mental health, whether that be reading a book, having regular coffee and cake with friends, or going for a nice walk. Try building a routine early on and develop those habits early.

If you’re keen to get involved with mindfulness, why not check out our Study Happy programme full of events to keep you studying, well, happy! Similarly, if you are struggling with things, it’s really important that you talk to someone. The University’s Wellbeing Support Services are always on hand to offer the support you need, in whichever way you need it.

What do you do to stay well? Leave a comment below or tweet us @WarwickLibrary

The Ups and Downs of Summer Jobs

As a result of spending most months of the year studying, many university students can feel an immense pressure during the summer break to take all the paid work that they can. But how can students balance summer jobs with the need to maintain studies, while also finding time to relax? This blog explores the ups and downs of summer jobs, and the real impact of balancing student life with financial stability.

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Year Abroad Advice to Keep in Mind Before Departure

The university experience is full of change, with every new academic year requiring students to mediate a transition into the next stage of their degree. The year abroad, however, often presents a unique challenge for students, which can seem daunting in the beginning.  While preparing to embark on the year abroad, students frequently find themselves bombarded with advice, from both tutors and fellow students. It can quickly feel overwhelming and hard to remember the suggestions being thrown your way. During the 2019/2020 academic year, I completed my year abroad in a small city just outside Düsseldorf, Germany.  (Below is a picture of me on a trip to Heidelberg, just one of the many beautiful German cities I visited during the year!) This blog post sets out some of the advice that I remember hearing before I left for my year abroad but wish I had paid closer attention to!

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Digital Discussions: Leading Online Seminars

Leading a seminar can be a scary prospect at the best of times, but dealing with the difficulties of online learning can make it even harder. Whether your session is graded or not, piloting an hour or two of learning is an intimidating task, but there are preparations you can make to ensure success. This blog post offers tips for humanities students that are leading online seminars, with practical advice to make your session run as smoothly as possible.

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How to ace your Dissertation Presentation

Nervous about your dissertation presentation? You’re not alone! As if writing a dissertation wasn’t enough of a task, it seems almost cruel that you have to do a presentation for it as well. For many people, oral presentations (or public speaking in general) can be really stressful experiences. However, the vast majority of degrees require some form of formal discussion about your research, and for many this will actually count towards your grade. Whether it’s formative or summative, it’s worth looking at your presentation as a chance to show your department what you’re made of, and to gain valuable feedback in the process. So, with that in mind, here are some tips to help you ace your presentation!

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