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by Kat Rowe | April 10, 2024

A Guide to Navigating Mental Health and Academic Success 

Being a student is an exciting time of growth and learning, but striking a balance between mental health and study can often be a challenge. 

In Australia, this pressure is reflected in recent statistics. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) 2020-2023 National Study of Mental Health and Wellbeing, a significant 38.8% of young adults aged 16-24 experience some form of mental disorder. 

A 2022 research report by ReachOut further emphasises the negative impact of study stress, with a staggering 75% of young people reporting a lack of motivation due to academic pressures. 

This stress can manifest in a variety of ways, including difficulties in sleeping, changes in mood, and difficulty concentrating – all of which can significantly hinder both academic success and overall wellbeing.

Studies show a strong link between mental health and study. Students who prioritise their wellbeing tend to be more focused, and motivated and ultimately perform better. So, let’s explore some practical tips to help you thrive throughout your studies!

Tip 1: Building a Balanced Routine – Optimising Your Study Habits for Success

The key to balancing mental health and study lies within a well-crafted routine. Try to avoid cramming sessions that leave you drained, the key is structure!  

Think of your study schedule like running a marathon. You wouldn’t run without water breaks, incorporating these mental pit stops will keep you energised and prevent burnout.

When it comes to maximising your time within those study blocks, time management is your secret weapon. Try creating a to-do list for each session, prioritising the most challenging tasks first. 

There’s a whole toolbox of time management techniques out there, so experiment and find what works best for you. Next, designate a study haven – a quiet, well-lit space without distractions.

Having a dedicated area fosters concentration and helps you get into a productive study flow. Finally, don’t underestimate the power of realistic goals. Break down big projects into smaller, achievable milestones. Not only will this keep you motivated, but the satisfaction of checking completed tasks off your list is a fantastic motivator.

Tip 2: Prioritising Wellbeing – Essential Self-Care Strategies for Students

Juggling studies, social commitments, and a part-time job can leave you feeling like you’re running on fumes. But remember, prioritising your wellbeing isn’t a luxury – it’s the foundation for academic success and a balanced life.  

When you take care of yourself, mentally and physically, you’ll have the energy and focus to tackle your studies with confidence.

So, how can you integrate self-care into your busy student schedule? 

First, aim for a consistent sleep schedule. Getting quality sleep is crucial for cognitive function, memory consolidation, and overall mood. 

Next, fuel your body with nutritious meals and snacks. Try to avoid sugary treats and processed foods that can lead to energy crashes. Regular physical activity is also a game-changer. Whether it’s a walk, a gym session, a team sport, or simply moving in a way that is comfortable for you, exercise is a fantastic stress reliever and mood booster.  

Taking a few minutes each day to practice mindfulness or relaxation techniques like meditation or deep breathing can also work wonders for managing stress and anxiety. 

Don’t forget the importance of social connection! Maintaining strong relationships with family and friends provides a vital support network and helps you feel grounded. So, make time for those you care about, and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it.

Tip 3 Conquering Exam Season – Effective Mental Health Hacks for Students

Exams can be a nerve-wracking time, but with the right approach, you can manage stress and anxiety and perform at your full potential. 

Firstly, create a detailed study plan and stick to it as closely as possible. Knowing exactly what you need to cover and having a clear timeline will boost your confidence and reduce last-minute cramming chaos.  

Break down large study topics into smaller, manageable chunks. This will make the process feel less overwhelming and help you stay focused during each study session.  

Before and during exams, practice relaxation techniques like deep breathing exercises or mindfulness meditation. These can help calm your nerves, improve concentration, and allow you to think clearly under pressure. 

Remember, you don’t have to go it alone. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, many universities offer free support services like counselling centres or peer mentoring programs.  

Thriving Not Just Surviving Study Periods 

Striking a balance between academic success and mental wellbeing may seem like a whirlwind, but it’s absolutely achievable. 

By incorporating these tips into your routine, you can create a study schedule that prioritises both your academic goals and your mental health. 

If you’re ever feeling overwhelmed or struggling to cope, please don’t hesitate to reach out for help. 

Visit our website to learn more. Together, we can help you thrive throughout your academic journey.

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