Health & Studies
All of us can often forget to prioritize looking after ourselves, whether that be physical health, mental health or our generally wellbeing, but it’s vital that we know how to bring ourselves back from this and not let it happen in the future. Future Quest have put together a basic guide of hints and tips on how you can look after yourself below.
This may seem the most obvious, but can be easily overlooked. Most importantly, a balanced diet of a variety of fruit and vegetables is the easiest way to keep yourself on track. More specifically, you can boost brain power by eating plenty of berries, spinach, broccoli, wholegrains, avocados and eggs – and even dark chocolate!
More so, eat protein rich foods such as beans, pulses, and legumes, and use low fat dairy products and unsaturated oils and spreads. Fibre intake is also vital, and can include wholegrain cereals, brown rice and wholegrain bread.
As always, all of this is best in moderation.
As always, make sure you are eating a balanced diet of at least five portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables a day, protein rich food such as beans, pulses and fish, eat low fat dairy products and choose unsaturated oils and spreads. Don’t forget your fibre intake too by choosing wholegrain cereals, brown rice and wholegrain bread.
Reducing sugar and calorie intake by cutting down on fizzy drinks and juices or by substituting them for water will help your health in the long run, you can also find NHS guidance on the recommended water intake per day, which is generally around 1.2 litres. Hydration apps are also available to monitor your drinking habits.
You can infuse your water for better taste by adding slices of lemon or lime, or by using an iced tea bag. It’s also important to note that tea and coffee does in fact count towards raising your hydration levels, so get the kettle on!
Take time out to relax
Some of the best ways to take care of your wellbeing and avoiding burn out is simply by taking time out to relax, but we recognise this can sometimes be easier said than done. Taking regular breaks to meditate, listen to music, indulge in your favourite TV shows, or by practising creative hobbies can do wonders for your wellbeing. Try to be strict with your phone – it’s easy to get lost in the never-ending scroll, but this often leads to shorter attention spans and poorer night’s sleep.
Keep in touch with your friends and don’t isolate yourself during exam (or any busy) periods. Taking time out to just have an easy chat about whatever gives your brain a break from the intense periods of concentration or stress you may be going through.
It may sound like a cliché, but keeping active is a great way to improve and maintain concentration and memory skills. If your sporty, great, but if not, that’s fine! Taking the time to get some fresh air on a walk, using involving anything that motivates you, such as music, will be a great help.
Most of us know that the average amount of sleep we need is around 8 hours, but with burnout and stress, it can often feel we’ve not slept at all when we wake up, even if the 8 hour goal was met. Avoiding caffeine, large meals before bed, and nicotine within a few hours of going to bed will certainly improve your sleep, as well as resisting the urge to use screens.
If you find yourself often disturbed and awake in the middle of the night, use a notepad to quickly jot down any thoughts you have before going to sleep, this could be things you may be worried about, tasks for the next that are giving you stress, or anything that comes involuntary to your mind.
You could also use a fitness tracker or sleep app to track just how much sleep you get, as well as establishing a routine to help improve your sleep.
Connect with others
Sometimes, we don’t even realise when we’re stressed until we’re in the thick of it, so it’s important to talk to somebody if you’re having worries of difficulties around study. Being able to just share your thoughts and feelings with a friend, teacher, parent, or carer is often the first step to feeling better.
On the flip side, make sure you check-in with your friends to see how they’re doing. A good way is to ask twice to find out if they are ok as often, we will say we are fine when we’re not. Don’t let yourself or the folks around you suffer in silence!
Time management can be hard, and certainly not everyone finds it simple. Planning your study or revision time by setting specific, manageable goals is a great place to start with organisation. Furthermore, you can give yourself an incentive by rewarding yourself each time you reach a milestone.
With this in mind, there a ton of apps available that can help you manage your time effectively, and as always, make sure you plan some ‘me time’ to give yourself a break from studies.
Look after your hygiene
Another fairly obvious point, but keeping on top of hygiene is essential. With stress involved, it can be easy to skip basic every-day tasks, especially if we become overwhelmed with study, revision, or anything in our lives, really. Maintaining a routine of showering and dressing in clean clothes helps to give you a boost of energy and always sets us up for the day ahead.