CNC’s start of term wellness guide

CNC’s start of term wellness guide

CNC Wellness

October marks the start of a new term at CNC. New and returning students were welcomed back into the classroom last week to an array of in-person induction week activities. It’s an exciting time to meet new like-minded peers and start new academic studies. This time, however exciting, can be fraught with a compounding of a variety of emotions. Feelings of anxiety and worry about the up-coming term are mixed with the processing of the year and a half we all experienced as we transition back from a virtual learning space back into a real one. 


As induction week was well underway, one of the key sessions on the time table was a well being workshop with the CNC counsellors, who explored the importance of learning strategies to combat stress and imparting their best tips for self care – which will serve as a tool kit for students as we navigate, the natural and expected pinch points of stress that emerge. 



What is stress?


Stress is “a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances”. There are two types of stress which we can experience: “internal stressors” and “external stressors”. Internal stressors are rooted in our own thoughts and negative beliefs; these can include, but are not limited to, self doubt, our worries, body image and how we are perceived by others. External stressors are out of our control and happen to us, for example living through the pandemic, assignment deadlines, difficulties in relationships, and moving accommodation. 


So, what can we do?


  1. Limit your time on social media – comparison is human nature, however the constant comparison to other people’s projection of themselves on social media to our own unfiltered lives can be damaging. With the average Briton checking their phone 28 times a day, a survey, conducted by Origin, of a thousand Gen Z people, found that 41% were experiencing poor mental health due to social media. Social media has also been seen to affect sleep, memory and concentration levels. Reducing your amount of social media can reduce the impact and allow time for other hobbies and self-care measures that can improve your mental health.

  2. Use trusted media sources – avoid the fake news and bombardment of click-bait pop-up headlines. Focus on digestible and trusted sources to give you an accurate and fair balance of news. Go through your news feeds and notice which content is having a positive effect on your mind and what sources are adding to your stress. You are in control of the content you see, like, follow and subscribe wisely.

  3. Choosing one action over another – allow yourself “worry-time”, a concentrated amount of time where you sit down and allow yourself to think through the stressor. This is a designated time period to allow you separate the stress from the rest of the day. This will stop the stress seeping into every activity and allow you to remain productive. During this time it is also important to remember that “thoughts are not facts”. The “average person has about 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day. Of those thousands of thoughts, 80% were negative, and 95% were exactly the same repetitive thoughts as the day before”. Many of these thoughts are subconscious, but there needs to be an awareness that just because we have thought, does not mean that it is factually accurate.

  4. Journaling – this can be extremely therapeutic and a way to explore your feelings in a safe space. It is not always easy to talk to someone about how you feel but a private journal is an excellent way to do this. This can be simply recounting your day, the feelings you felt and a place to get into your flow state and just work through a problem you may be experiencing. And don’t forget, it is equally important to write about the positives as well as the negatives. So often we jump to the negatives, but being in the moment and celebrating the positives is just as important.

  5. Prioritise self-care – make time for yourself and the things, places and people that remind you to take a step back, to enjoy the moment, breathe and allow the stress to melt away.

  6. ABC – The final step to mitigate stress following the ABC’s. A is for awareness and acceptance: be aware of your feelings, observe them, and accept how you feel. B is for balance and bargain and C is for communication and connections. Prioritise those who make you feel good and talk about how you feel, and reach out for help when you need it.

Read more about how the fashion industry is supporting the conversation around mental health. 

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