09 Nov 2022
It’s week five already, and many of you may have noticed that this point in a Cambridge term can elicit a certain amount of interest and debate. For our first years, you may be thinking, “what’s the big fuss with week five”?
Week five is a focus point for mental health awareness because it’s the halfway point in term when some students may feel overwhelmed, tired, and under pressure with upcoming deadlines.
Whether you recognise these feelings or you are wondering what on earth we are talking about, the Wellbeing Team has some practical strategies and tips for managing stress to share with you, and that should be helpful to everyone. For this, we are using Dialectical Behavioural Therapy skills (DBT). DBT was initially developed as a cognitive behavioural therapy that utilises skills training to help people manage difficulties. We hope the following skills are helpful in giving you strategies to successfully navigate the next few weeks of term. Most importantly – be kind to yourself – know your limits and boundaries and self-care.
Please find our tips’ headings below, and visit the DBT website for more details on each tip as well as videos:
- TIPP (Temperature, Intense exercise, Paced breathing, and Paired muscle relaxation)
- ACCEPTS (Activities, Contributing, Comparisons, Emotions, Push away, Thoughts, and Sensation)
- IMPROVE (Imagery, Meaning, Prayer, Relaxation, One thing in the moment, Vacation, and Encouragement)
- PRO AND CON LIST (pro and con list to weigh out the consequences of your decision)
- SELF SOOTHE (Sight, Hearing, Taste, Touch, Smell, Movement)
- RADICAL ACCEPTANCE (sometimes we will have an undesirable situation that won’t change. We may not like it or approve of it, but acceptance will allow us to feel peace and provide us with the space to move on)
By Julie McCrae, Counsellor