University can be an incredibly stressful time. Sometimes it can feel like too much. That’s why self-care for students is so very important. Developing self-care habits takes time, but it’s so, so important to make sure you don’t get burnt out (trust me, I’ve been there). Another important thing is to find out what works for you because the art of relaxing differs for everybody. There’s many self-care tips available, but finding two or three ways to take care of yourself can be critical for your mental health while at uni. With that being said, here are some of the best and effective self-care tips for students to try. 

Keep in touch with friends and family

self-care tips for students
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Moving away from home to university can be a lot. Due to the stresses of being a student and just generally being physically far from everyone and everything you know, it can feel like you don’t keep in touch with your friends and family as much anymore. However, that can be rectified. One of the best self-care tips for students is to schedule in time with loved ones regularly. Organise a Facetime catchup, Zoom party or just a phone call with your friends and family, and you’ll hopefully feel closer to them again. 

Get some movement in

exercise is a great self-care tip for students
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You may feel like you don’t do as much exercise as you’d like to at uni. Bus to campus, hours upon hours in classes and the library, bus back. So, as a way of taking care of yourself, why not try to do a little more exercise every so often? Maybe instead of getting the bus to campus, you could walk (obviously within reason, if you live far from campus then don’t walk for two hours just to get to campus). Your university might have a gym, so you could try going there too.

Exercise is a great way to boost your self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy, and is one of the best self-care tips to try as a student. It can be competitive, such as reaching a personal goal like running 5k or beyond, or to unwind and let off steam, such as yoga, swimming or kickboxing. Whatever you choose, using exercise as a form of self-care can be powerful, and good for your physical health too. 

Unplug from technology

students can practise self-care by meditating
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This is hard for almost everyone to do, especially students. But coming away from social media is a great tool for practising self-care. Technology comes with a lot of mental noise, and often prevents you from truly letting yourself switch off. Being able to let the mind, body and soul come away from social media and technology and be more present can actually work miracles! Give it a try for 12 hours…(during awake time).

Set boundaries

know your boundaries
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Uni culture can be very intense, especially when it comes to drinking and clubbing. You may feel pressured to go out every night and get absolutely drunk if that’s what your friends are doing. But, if you don’t want to, you don’t have to. Setting boundaries is probably one of the best self-care steps for students out there. Learning how to say no to situations is critical, especially for your mental health. Taking a night out from alcohol or clubs should be something that your friends respect (if they don’t, then maybe you should find some new friends?). It doesn’t always come easy, but setting boundaries is an effective self-care tool that you carry on past student life too!

Schedule ‘me’ time

practice self-care by having some alone time
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You’re with people pretty much all the time at uni, but don’t forget how nice ‘me’ time can be. Taking a night for yourself to just chill on your own can be great for your mental health. You can watch your favourite movie or TV show, listen to music, go for a walk, go to the gym, read or whatever you like. Doing things that you enjoy, no matter what anyone else thinks, is important! After all, self-care involves doing things for you, and when you’re a student, it can be hard to find the time! Here’s a tip on keeping up with self-care – put it in your calendar. Schedule one hour a week for yourself, and make sure you stick to it! 


self-care tips for students include breathing
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This last one may sound a little silly, but hear me out. We breathe about 22,000 times a day, so you literally have a method of self-care built in. Taking some time in the day just to focus on your breathing, taking slow, deep breaths in and out, can help you to calm down. There’s even apps for it, because that’s how effective breath work can be for self-care. This is arguably the best self-care tip for students because you literally don’t have to do anything, breathing is a natural process.  Next time feeling anxious, stressed or down, give it a try. 


So, there you have it, these are some of the top self-care tips for students. While not an extensive list, these will hopefully help you find some tips and strategies of your own to help you calm down. Self-care is an ongoing practice, so try to find ways to make them habits or regular activities. Some of these self-care tips can also be helpful if you’re feeling overwhelmed as a student too!

Remember that if you feel like you need to talk to someone about any problem, your university will have a support team and you can talk to friends, family or someone trusted. No matter what the problem is, there will be someone or something out there to help you.

If you’re looking for some other ways to look after your mental health, check out our list of the best ways to look after your mental health as a student.