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Preparing for the rain – Taking care of yourself at King’s

Sapphire Francis
MSc Mental Health Studies Student

03 October 2023

Hi everyone, my name is Sapphire and over the summer I worked as a Student Services Communications Intern. I graduated from King’s with a BSc Psychology, and I studied MSc Mental Health Studies, so if it wasn’t already clear, I am really passionate about mental health!

University can be overwhelming at times, so it's essential to be prepared for those moments when things feel a bit too much. Just like carrying an umbrella when you expect rain, it's good to have strategies in place for handling stress. As students, we might hesitate to reach out for help, but remember that support is always available, even if all you need is someone to talk to.

In this article, I share how you can make the most of the resources available at Kings to look after your mental health and wellbeing.

How to help yourself

Being educated about what’s available is always a good place to start. There are lots of options for students who are seeking resources to learn how to maintain their wellbeing and self-care.

The KCLSU Wellbeing Hub offers activities, events, resources and more to help boost your wellbeing and thrive all year round. Organisations like Student Minds provide resources with detailed information on different challenges that university life can bring. I’ve enjoyed improving my understanding of my own mental health and wellbeing and learning how to take care of myself. For example, I have found the emotion tracker useful to process difficult feelings during stressful or confusing periods, and enjoyed using the journal prompts as a reflective exercise.

Courtesy of the Sport & Wellness Centre, you can enjoy some self-care with free weekly sessions, including Sports Massages, Physiotherapy consultations, Mindfulness and Journaling. For further support, you can also register for the King’s Wellness Scheme for help with mental or physical health issues, through the use of exercise therapy.

Reaching out for help

We’re told to speak to our personal tutors as a first contact. Personal tutors may be best for students who would like to talk through their options related to studying. However, there are other options you can contact directly for pastoral support, giving you the opportunity to share your thoughts with an empathetic listener.

  • The Chaplaincy provide pastoral support for all students and staff, of all faiths and none.
  • Faculty Wellbeing Advisors are available to support your wellbeing needs throughout your time at King's.
  • Residence Welfare Leads are trained live-in volunteers who provide out-of-hours support to students living in King’s Residences.

Getting support for specific needs

Most students are aware of the Counselling and Mental Health Service. However, there are other dedicated teams to support you with specific concerns you may have. Don’t be afraid to seek help for ‘practical’ issues. You may experience difficulties relating to money, housing, immigration or visas, which can contribute to stress and affect your mental health. Remember that if you have any worries relating to these areas, several support services are available at King's.

My final piece of advice? Don’t be afraid to try things. Different support works for different people, for different issues and that is why it’s great there are so many to try.

Familiarise yourself with the support services available at King’s so that when problems arise you know where to go. You can find out more about what support services are available on student services online.