Tag Archives: Wellbeing

What’s going on? Looking After Your Mental Health

In the lead-up to Mental Health Awareness Week student blogger Frankie reflects on recognising that we all need to look after ourselves.

Plus, UC Health Centre and the RecCentre have teamed up to provide great links – tool kits for taking time for you.

Us students have a lot going on in our lives. Alongside study, many of us are working and trying to balance friends and family. When it’s all getting a bit much, there are some things you can do to look after yourself which may seem simple but can make a surprising
difference in your mental wellbeing.

Exercise is not only good for you physically, but also mentally. Ever left the gym feeling better than when you went in? It’s a chemical reaction. Exercising releases dopamine, the brain chemical which makes you feel happy. Take some time to work out in the Rec Centre
or try taking a walk on your study breaks.

Tool kit

Physical activity for mental wellbeing>

Exercise is good for your health>

What is the single best thing we can do for our health?>

Physical activity – Ministry of Health>

Eating well is another thing which will help both your physical and mental health. Energy drinks and instant noodles might be the quintessential student diet but unsurprisingly it’s not the best for you. The better fuel you put in your body the better results you’ll get out of it. you might be surprised by the difference.


Tool kit

Your brain on food>

Diet and mental health>

Sleep might fall by the wayside during student life, but it’s vital your brain is given the time to rest and rejuvenate if you want to really feel your best. With deadlines coming up you might feel like you need constantly be studying, but if you take the time to get your eight hours you’ll find your study more productive than powering through with caffeine.

Tool kit

Sleep and mental health>

While all these things can help you to keep on top of your mental health, sometimes it can feel like nothing is making a difference. Maybe even these thing are becoming a struggle. If this is the case, consider reaching out and seeking professional help.

Where to get support

Student Care team The offers practical advice for your wellbeing and success as a UC student.

UC’s Health Centre offers counselling services to all students and you can also get referrals through your doctor.

Find even more support at UC here>

National helplines

Need to talk? Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor 

Lifeline – 0800 543 354 (0800 LIFELINE) or free text 4357 (HELP)

Suicide Crisis Helpline – 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO)

Healthline – 0800 611 116

Samaritans – 0800 726 666 

Promote your Mental Health Awareness Week activities now

Are you planning to participate with staff or students in Mental Health Awareness Week activities from 8-14 October? We’re here to help promote your mental health initiatives on campus.Promote your Mental Health Awareness Week activities now

Email: communications@canterbury.ac.nz 

More from the Mental Health Foundation NZ mauri tū, mauri ora, including resources here>


Spring Clean Your Mind – Message from UC Chaplain Spanky Moore

“Hey, Kiaora everyone! My name is the Reverend Spanky Moore.

I am the Chaplain at the University of Canterbury.  Look, it’s spring time at my house, beautiful blue skies, isn’t it lovely.  Suns out.  Lemon tree fruiting. Gosh, everything feels so good right now.

Something I want to encourage you to do as you come into your first week of term four, end of semester, as you’re driving towards the end.  Is to do something I would call a spring clean of your mind.  You know sometimes we might do a spring clean of our house but often we don’t look at the thing that is closest to us, which is our mind, which has the most impact on how we’ll do in life. 

A while ago, I had in my car, this terrible stink that started to come out of my car.  I couldn’t work out where it was or what it was.   After searching my car i discovered, we had some Dubba Dubba, you know the Moroccan place down on Bush Inn corner.  We’d had some Dubba Dubba and I’d forgotten that I’d half eaten it and slid it under the seat of my car and when I got it out, it had sort of sweated in the plastic bag, and it was moldy and it had stunk out the whole car, but it was really really hard to find the stink.  It was kind of hidden away secretly.

I think that can be same with some of the ways that we think, we call it our self talk, or our mind traps.  Sometimes our brains get stuck in this loop and we start to think the worst of things.  We have a whole lot of self talk that isn’t based on reality.  Sometimes it’s based on our emotions, or just how we feel, our fears.

My challenge for you when you want to spring clean our mind is, You want to hunt down in your mind, where is there stinky thinking.  Stuff that isn’t true, it’s not serving you and in fact it is setting you up to fail.  

So, let me give you an example of something from my own life.  Sometimes, when I go and talk to strangers, I feel like they think that I’m lame, that I’m a loser and that they won’t like me but actually someone said, from now on Spanky, here is what you should say to yourself, say: “I’m going to assume that these people like me, until they prove otherwise”.  Does that make sense?

So, when I walk into a place, I assume that the people will like me and look, they can prove otherwise and I will accept that they don’t want to be my friend but other than that but other than that I am going to assume that they do like me.  That has actually set me up, so that when I go into rooms,  I’m actually much warmer, I’m less fear-filled, less anxious and you know what people actually like me more because of it. 

It’s the same with study, if you go into your exams saying “I’m dumb, I’m thick, I can’t do this”, it’s going to have that knock off consequence.

So, that’s my advice for you. It’s spring time, get into your mind, work out where is your stinky thinking and you’ve got to clean out the car.  Find out wherever that rotten takeaway’s are in your mind.  Get it out, you’ll be happier for it, you’ll be better with your studies, and you’ll actually like being with yourself.  Your mind has to be your friend.

Anyway, that’s my advice, have a great spring.

God Bless,