Why it's normal to have a bit of a crisis at some point in your life
You're expected to have a life crisis at some point in your life.
You may have even already had a life crisis or two already. Maybe you had a mini-crisis after leaving year six in primary school to take the next big step into year seven.
Or you might have had another whilst trying to decide what you're going to study for your GCSEs, followed by having to answer the question of whether you should stay on at sixth form, go to college, get a job, do an apprenticeship or go to university.
On top of all those big steps early on, there are also lots of other factors that could make you feel overwhelmed or anxious during your life. A few months ago The Guardian reported that the average household now has unsecured debts of over £10,000.
Crisis reported that 57,000+ households were reported as homeless last year—caused by many reasons such as the breakdown in relationships.
The number one cause of concern for students is debt. For some, it's their first time away from home. Having the new responsibility of managing a budget for the first time can be stressful when paired with having fun, working, studying and trying to get the grades you want. All of these factors can lead to crisis, but there a crisis could happen at lots of points throughout your life.
These could be starting your first full-time job, breaking up with your partner, getting engaged, getting married, or having your first child, then the ‘empty nest', getting older, or getting divorced—the list is endless.
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Some simple things to get you by. I know the feeling of those busy days where it seems impossible that you could get anything done. Where there is so much to do and you don't know what to prioritize. The stress can be overwhelming. But if you try to check in with yourself and do things such as self care and managing the situation, it may help. For example make lists and check things off to reassure yourself that you are getting somewhere! But also take a couple minutes to soak up the moment, live in the now 💕 Artist credit: @gc_doodles
How to find help when going through a crisis
There is a lot we can do for ourselves before we seek help elsewhere, but there is no shame if you need it. We can also look after each other.
If we see others that are struggling, we have a responsibility to either offer support by directing them to one of the services available at your university.
The Samaritans: You can contact the Samaritans through their website, email, visit a local branch or via the phone. They offer support in a way that you choose. They can also signpost you to other organisations for further help. Support is free and is available 24 hours a day.
Befrienders Worldwide: They will listen, not judge and they will provide emotional support. They provide confidential support but will also signpost you to other organisations for further support. They can be contacted via their website, via email or phone.
Mental Health: They provide a listening ear and will support any area that you may be struggling with. They don't provide personal support but there is a range of self-help topics on their website. If you want you can contact them via Facebook or Twitter.
Mind: There is a lot of self-help guides on their website but there is also a tab that will inform you if you need urgent help. For support, you can email and there is also a helpline. Mind shops can be found on most high streets, where you could pop in for general information or pick up a leaflet.
NHS: Your GP will provide support by signposting you to different therapies. Depending on the severity you may be referred to outpatients for further support and or be offered medication. On their Live Well site, you can find self help support that may help before needing to visit your GP.
Money Saving Expert: Provides advice about student loans, fees and grants. He describes his ideas as '...the truth...' and '...mythbusting...' and he presents 20 ways to see them in a different light and he gives more details about the process'.
The Wellbeing Centre at your university: You could visit your Wellbeing Centre at your university where face to face help can be found. You can also access self-help support through your university's website. Confidentially is key and they can signpost you to other organisations for further support should you need it but will also offer practical support for self-help care.