The University has a welcoming and supportive community. Many of our staff have returned to campus while a large number of staff continue to work from home, we should try to consider the diverse situations our colleagues are in – some may be living alone and struggling with the isolation, others have caring responsibilities that need to be woven into the working day.

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues it is important to make time to look after yourself. Maintaining our mental wellbeing can be difficult; and it’s difficult in different ways for different people. It could be that you’re struggling to find a positive work/life balance, or that you’re not exercising as much as you’d like to.

Here are some ideas to help you with your Wellbeing, but please remember if you need additional support please contact your HR Partner or use one of our free support services.

Connect

Evidence shows that connecting with others can promote wellbeing and build a support network when times get tough. Connecting is about being there for others, talking and listening, and feeling a sense of belonging. Try to take the time to talk to someone on the phone instead of emailing or organise a virtual catch up.

Togetherall

Join an online community to support your mental health & wellbeing.

Active Travel

Join the Active Travel Club to connect with staff and students at the University who use walking, cycling, running or scooting as a method of transport.

Virtual Coffee

Pop into the Multi-Faith Chaplaincy for a virtual coffee and a catch up.

Book Club

Join the Multi-Faith Chaplaincy Book Club.

Quiz Night

Challenge your family or friends to a quiz night, choosing a different host for every quiz night.

Bake-Off

Challenge your colleagues or family members to a bake-off competition.

Be Active

Being active isn’t just good for our physical health; it’s also proven to have a positive effect on our mental health and wellbeing. Take time for a short walk during the day or take a new physical activity you enjoy or have always wanted to pursue.

Take Notice

Paying more attention to the present moment, to thoughts and feelings and to the world around, boosts our wellbeing. Try to take a break to sit quietly in the garden or park, listen to your favourite music or mindfulness session. It’s often the simple things that bring us joy.

Feeling Good App

Download the Feeling Good App for quick and easy access to mindfulness and relaxation tracks.

Use the login details below to access free premium materials.

Username: abdnuni2

Password: positive

Find out more

Pamper Session

Can’t get to the Spa? Create a pamper session at home. Take a restorative bath or make a face mask using kitchen cupboard ingredients.

Find out more

Puzzles/Games

Switch off from your daily routine with free games and puzzles. Card games, brain teasers, sports, multi-player games and more to keep you busy.

Find out more

BBC Podcasts

BBC Podcasts - something for everyone.

Find out more

BeWell Podcasts

Check out our range of podcasts covering all things wellbeing.

Find out more

Learn

Learning improves our self-esteem, keeps us connected and involved and helps us adapt to change and find meaning in our lives. It has also been shown to help prevent depression in later years. Try learning something new today. Read a new book or research something you’ve always been curious about.

Knitting

Learn to knit something warm for the colder weather!

Ancestry

Ever wondered who your great, great grandparents were?

Find out more about your family history.

Cleaning and DIY Hacks

Cleaning products can be expensive. Have a go and find out which one’s work.

Check out some cleaning and DIY hacks here

Give

Giving to others can create positive feelings and help you to connect with other people.  It can be as simple as asking a friend how they are or giving your time to listen to someone who needs support or company. Take the time to check in with a colleague or friend who may be on their own during the winter break. A short phone call could be all it takes to brighten someone’s day.

Donate to charity

Due to current restrictions it has been difficult to take part in physical fundraising opportunities this year. The smallest amount can make a difference. Whether it’s a local charity or international one, we all have a charity that is close to our heart.

Donate to the University's Christmas-Appeal

Check in on a colleague

Do you know of a colleague who may be on their own? Give them a call to check how they are.

Help someone with their food shop

Do you know someone who is isolating or may be unwell? A simple food shop can really help.

Family Fun

Try some of these activities to keep the kids busy during the winter break.

Mocktails

Try some of these fun and fruity mocktails recipes with the family.

Crafts and Drawing

Make zebras out of toilet rolls, sunflowers out of lolly pop sticks or create bookmark bunnies.

Check out our crafty ideas here.

Support Services

If you are struggling during the current government restrictions you are not alone, and support is available. There is a range of internal and external resources available.

Internal Support Services

CareFirst - The University offers staff an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) which provides a free, confidential face to face and telephone counselling service as well as information services.

Counselling service - The Counselling Service is available to all University members of staff.

Employee Wellbeing - The Employee Wellbeing pages provide advice and information on mental and physical wellbeing, workplace wellbeing and more.

HR Partners - The HR Partners provide advice on HR policies and procedures, initial point of contact for recruitment and provide first line assistance for any employment concerns.

Mental health First Aiders - We have MHFAs across both University of Aberdeen campuses.

Multi-Faith Chaplaincy - The Multi-faith Chaplaincy offers resources and help for everyone, whatever their situation.

Staff Equality Network Groups - The University is fully committed to equality for all of its staff and students.

Trade Unions - Every member of staff has the right to belong to a Trades Union of his/her own choice.

Workplace Dignity Network - The Workplace Dignity Network aims to provide support to staff who would like to chat through wellbeing concerns. This could be in relation to bullying/harassment, stress, work relationships, work/life balance or mental health issues.

External Support Services

Alcohol - There are a number of support services available for alcohol related concerns within the NHS.

Beat Eating Disorders - Beat, the UK’s eating disorder charity is a free and confidential service that can offer support and understanding to young people.

Beathing Space - Breathing Space provides free and confidential listening, advice and information on ways to help us to cope when we are struggling or feeling low.

Weekdays: Monday-Thursday 6pm to 2am
Weekend: Friday 6pm-Monday 6am

LGBT Foundation - The LGBT Foundation provides information and support to all LGBTQI+ people.

Mental Health Aberdeen - A local charity that provides information and counselling for people experiencing mental health difficulties.

Mental Health Aberdeen Helpline: 01224 573892 

MIND - You might be worried about coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it could affect your life. This might feel difficult or stressful. Visit the MIND website for ways to help your wellbeing.

National Sleep Foundation - For top tips on getting a better night’s sleep.

NHS Grampian - NHS Grampian have some great self-help guides that can help you understand what you are experiencing.

Prevent Suicide - A suicide prevention app aimed at users in the north east of Scotland. Provides helpful info for those affected in any way by suicide.

Samaritans - If you are struggling to cope and would like to talk to someone, the Samaritans helpline is open 24/7.

Togetherall - Access free online support with Togetherall. Whether you’re struggling to sleep, feeling low, stressed or not coping, Togetherall can help you get support, take control and feel better.

If you are feeling distressed and need support, please contact NHS 24 on 111. If you feel at immediate risk call 999.