When you have started to adapt to life away from home, the holidays can feel like an odd time. Our mental health can be more vulnerable at these times of transition. Here are some tips from Student Minds you might want to think about when the time comes to head home for the Easter or summer holidays.
You might find that the holidays mean a change of routine, from waking up at a different time to having family over to stay. If this is something that you find difficult, ask your family about their holiday plans in advance and let them know of anything they could do to make things easier for you. One of the difficult things about holidays is the amount of unstructured time you have each week.
Setting up your own personal routine can help to give you a sense of direction. If you have university work to get done, you could head over to the local library for a few hours each day. Other regular activities can also help to keep you feeling active, whether this is walking the family dog each morning or meeting up with friends in the evening.
Remember what you love about the holidays:
Going home for the holidays may mean being away from university friends and taking a break from some of your regular hobbies, but there are plenty of things to enjoy about being home such as meeting up with old friends and home comforts! Why not arrange to have a day out with your family or friends
Look after yourself:
With all the changes in routine, going home for the holidays can mean it’s easy to forget about the simple things. Make sure you get enough sleep, keep in touch with your friends and schedule in some ‘me time’ every day.
Do something different:
If you feel a bit cooped up over the holidays, why not explore some of the volunteering opportunities in your area? You could also try learning a new skill e.g. sign up for a language course, join a sports club or take up music lessons.
Don’t forget to give yourself a little time out to relax:
Call a friend for a catch up. Escape to your room for a few minutes and spend some time reading or listening to your favourite music. Indulge yourself: have a long hot bubble bath or sit back with a mug of coffee and a good book.
Head out for a walk – maybe you have a boisterous puppy in need of exercise, or a young cousin who is bouncing off the walls with excitement… or maybe you just want a few minutes of alone time. Either way it’s always great to get some fresh air!