Managing Mental Health at University | Our Mental Health Week

Hi everyone, my name is Suki and I am a second year student studying Digital Media and Society at the University of Sheffield. Seeing that it is Mental Health Week this week it is so suitable to create a video on how I personally tackle homesickness and being an introvert, as an international student studying in Sheffield. If you are watching this video and you feel like the title of this video relates to you in anyway, make sure to watch it to the end because no matter where you’re from where you’re going even if you’re not studying at the University of Sheffield, I wish my advice could help you in some way. I’ll start with homesickness. A few tips that I have learned and I have obtained from going through my first year, is that you should join a lot of societies and keep yourself super busy, so this could distract your thoughts from the family and your friends that you may have at home. Even if you’re not studying in our university there will be a lot of societies where you’re studying. The next is treat your flatmates like your family even though your family isn’t with you it’s not saying that you can’t build a new family in your university. Just make your university accommodation feel like home. Don’t see it as like a temporary accommodation. Also I want you to appreciate your university and the city where you are living in. For me personally I have found some gems in the city that I loved that I couldn’t find in Hong Kong which is where I’m originally from. So for example, the parks I’m surrounded by all the time literally are a two minute walk away from my accommodation, there’s a really nice skateboarding park where I can have picnics with my friends there which is something that I can’t achieve in Hong Kong. Last but not least I just want to say that homesickness is definitely something that everyone goes through and you’re not alone. Some might not show it to you, some might make it super obvious. Everyone is different. I’ve cried a few days, I’ve cried a few nights but I just want to say that time heals. You just have to get used to your life focus on the good stuff that’s happening and just embrace your new life. I’m also an introvert which makes university so scary for me. However, throughout my first year I kept forcing myself to branch out to step out of my comfort zone. Now I do really enjoy meeting new people and speaking out for myself more. And I’ll tell you some tips that helped me to achieve this. First thing is always try to step out of your comfort zone and just push yourself once in a while to do something that you never think you’d ever do because to be honest I always tell myself I rather regret the things I do than the things I didn’t do. I applied to be the university’s brand ambassador by the end of last year and the beginning of this year, I may have already met a lot of you guys but then I helped a lot of new fresher students to settle in for the first year in Orientation Week and Intro Week, which means that I had to talk to a lot of people every single day. Through this experience, I really learnt that making the first move when interacting with people is not embarrassing. It doesn’t make you look desperate. Just go for it. Especially being a fresher, a lot of people are in the same shoes as you. They want to make friends and they might be shy to say “Hi”. You’ve got nothing to lose and you might make a lifelong friendship through you saying “Hi”. And also take advantage of seminars. This is a weird one but I feel like this is super useful for me. University in general they have really big lectures. Lecture halls can fit up to 200 people. This is like hell on earth for introverts. When you have a question you just don’t want to ask your lecturer in front of like 200 people, so a seminar is definitely a good space for you to just get comfortable and try to speak out more in class. Last but not least, being an introvert is definitely not a bad thing. Don’t see that as something that is driving you down from your social life. There are just so many parts in your personality that you can take advantage of. But always be true to yourself. If there are days that you just don’t wanna go out or is want to stay in, be warm and watch YouTube videos watch Netflix or anything, just do that. Enjoy the solitude of yourself. I hope you find this video helpful and I wish you the best of luck for the rest of the uni year. Hope to see you guys around campus, bye!

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