Self-help resources

Abuse

Abuse is when a person, or group of people, seek to gain power over and remove the agency of another person or persons.

This can take a number of forms including unwanted sexual remarks or contact, to domestic abuse (which can contain violence or threats of violence, emotional abuse, social and financial control or sexual violence) and also bullying and harassment.

 

Further Information and Support Organisations

 

University of Glasgow Resources and Policies


Addiction: Alcohol

Alcohol misuse is prior to alcohol dependence. Alcohol abuse is when a person has dangerous and unhealthy drinking habits (e.g. drinking every day or binge drinking).

Continuous alcohol misuse can lead to alcohol dependence or alcoholism, wherein a person is physically and mentally addicted to alcohol. Alcohol misuse and dependence could have a detrimental impact on health and wellbeing.

Further Information

Here are some information sheets and books which can help you learn a little more about this topic:

Support Organisations


Addiction: Drugs

Drug addiction is when a person compulsively seeks and uses drugs, despite harmful consequences.

Drug addiction is considered a brain disease as drugs have an impact on the brain, changing its structure and how it works. Research has shown that drug addiction may have detrimental impact on how you behave.

Further Information

Here are some information sheets and books which can help you learn a little more about this topic:

Support Organisations


Anger

Anger is a natural emotional reaction to feelings of vulnerability, which can occur when we feel attacked, deceived, frustrated, invalidated or unfairly treated. Anger is not necessarily a 'bad' emotion and can even be useful at certain times. For example, feeling angry about something can help us to identify problems which need to be addressed and can motivate us to create change, achieve our goals and move on.

Most of us will experience episodes of anger which feel manageable and do not have a significant impact on our lives. Anger can become a problem, however, when we are unable to control our emotional responses and it leads to behaviours which are harmful or damaging to ourselves or others. In situations where anger is expressed through aggressive or destructive behaviour we tend not to successfully address the circumstances that cause us to feel angry in the first place, creating new problems due the to the hurt or damage we have caused and often undermining our own long-term mental and physical wellbeing.

If you or someone you know experiences difficulties with anger management or aggression, and is a potential risk to themselves or to others, it is important to seek support. 

Further Information

Charities and Support Groups


Anxiety

Anxiety is often expeienced as a feeling that is associated with fear and worry. Everyone has feelings of anxiety at some point in their lives, for example, feeling anxious before exams.

Anxiety is often experienced as having unhelpful thoughts related to threat and fear. Additionally, anxiety can result in experienceing physical sensations in your body. Depending on the levels of anxiety, whether mild or severe, it can be helpful or unhelpful to us:

  • Mild anxiety would help us increase motivation, for example, to set up a study plan so that you have a structure for revision.
  • Severe anxiety, could result in decreased motivation and not acting at all, for example, avoiding exams because of a fear of failure.

When someone experiences severe anxiety, it is difficult to control their worries, leading to a constant feeling of worry and anxiety that could have a detrimental impact on daily life. Anxiety has an impact on how we see ourselves, others and our future.

Further Information

 

Support Organisations


Assertiveness

Being assertive means that you can express your opinions and stand up for yourself and for others, calmly and positively, without being aggressive or confrontational.

It is the ability to respectfully acknowledge the opinion of others, and yet express how you feel about a topic of discussion/situation. 

When our self-esteem is low, it can be difficult to be assertive. Low self-esteem can lead to either reacting defensively, in an agressive or confrontational manner, or to backing down, allowing others to dominate the discussion/situation. These styles of communication are known as aggressive or passive, rather than assertive.

The videos and resources below provide examples of these different communication styles and more information on improving assertiveness skills. 

Further Information

Self-Help Exercises


Autism

Autism is a spectrum condition and is a lifelong developmental disorder that affects a person’s social interaction, communication, behaviour and interests.

It is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Problems such as social communication and interaction can be recognised during early childhood. However, sometimes features may not become visible or noticeable until there is a significant change to the child’s situation. Even then, it may occur that ASD features were noticeable in children but remain undiagnosed and enter adulthood without ever being diagnosed.

It is important to know that services are available for you as an adult to get assessed for ASD. An ASD diagnosis can help a person and their social network to understand the condition better, gain a level of acceptance, and thereby altering life to manage the condition better.

Further Information

  • Mental health and Asperger syndrome
  • Research Autism publications
  • Bliss, Veronica. (2007). A Self-Determined Future With Asperger Syndrome: Solution Focused Approaches.
  • Howlin, Patricia. (2004). Autism and Asperger syndrome: preparing for adulthood. Routledge.
  • Lawson, Wendy. (2000). Life behind glass: a personal account of autism spectrum disorder.
  • Willey, Liane Holliday. (2001). Asperger syndrome in the family: redefining normal. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Willey, Liane Holliday. (1999). Pretending to be normal: living with Asperger’s syndrome. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Mugsy.org - hints and tips on how to cope with daily life situations

Charities and Support Groups

  • The National Autistic Society & Helpline (for relatives, carers, friends and people with autism) Tel: 0808 800 4104 
  • Autism Network Scotland
  • Autism Resource Centre, c/o Centre for Sensory Impaired People, North West Social Work Services, 17 Gullane Street, Partick, Glasgow, G11 6AH (Tel: +44 (0) 141 276 5252)
  • The National Autistic Society Scotland, Central Chambers, First Floor, 109 Hope Street, Glasgow, G2 6LL (Tel: +44 (0) 141 221 8090)
  • Scottish Autism

Bereavement

Losing someone close to you is sad and upsetting, and is usually followed by a period of grief.

We will all suffer the loss of those close to us at some point in our lives. It takes time to cope with and adjust to daily life again, as the absence of the loved one will be deeply felt, causing us to experience emotions which we would not usually experience prior to the loss.

Everyone grieves in differet ways - some people are able to express themselves more and process grief-related emotions differently to others. 

There is no right or wrong way of experiencing grief. It is a sad and difficult time. However, it is important to know that there is support out there to help you cope with your feelings. 

Further Information

Further Information and Support Groups


Carers

You may be someone who has the responsibility of taking care of another person or people whilst also trying to take care of yourself. It is not always easy to juggle your life when you have this responsibility.

It is possible that you need some support to cope with the different aspects of your life along with your carer responsibilities, such as, financial support, practical support, managing your physical and mental health, balancing your work and studies, managing relationships, use of technology and equipment support, etc. 

You may need extra support to cope with the pressures of caring. We have some resources available that could be helpful for you.

Further Information

University of Glasgow Guidelines and Policies

Student Carers' Policy

Charities and Support Groups


Depression

Everyone goes through periods of low mood at some point in their lives. It is natural to have ups and downs and changes in mood in one’s day to day life.

It is important to know that low mood, when persistent for a long period of time, could have a detrimental impact on your everyday life. This is what is called depression.

Different people experience depression in different ways. The depressive period could occur in episodes and might be experienced as mild, moderate or severe depression.

Someone who has depression could be in low spirits, have a sense of hopelessness and helplessness, feel bad about himself/herself, not want to do things, and is unable to feel enjoyment or pleasure.

Further Information

Self-Help Exercises

Here are some things you can try to help manage your symptoms:

Charities and Support Groups


Physical Exercise and Mental Health

There is a strong evidence base highlighting the correlation between physical health and positive mental health. Physical exercise can be beneficial to many as we increase activity levels and increase the production of “happy hormones” such as endorphins and dopamine. As a result, increased physical exercise is correlated with a reduction in anxiety, depression, and stress levels. Physical exercise is also positively associated with an increased memory, mood, quality of sleep, as well as self-esteem and confidence. Physical activity therefore has a great potential to boost wellbeing and enhance our quality of life.

Research indicates that no matter your level of fitness, even small amounts of exercise (10-15 minutes) can be beneficial. Any activity that increases your heart rate or breath more rapidly will count toward your exercise. Students can enjoy high-intensity exercises, such as lifting weights, jogging/running, cycling, or playing sports, while also enjoying low-intensity exercises such as walking along one of Glasgow’s many scenic routes. Students can also enjoy additional forms of exercise such as dance, swimming, or yoga. Check out The University of Glasgow Sport online page where you can keep up to date with new workout suggestions and live classes throughout the week to keep you active and motivated! Additional club sports can be found at UofG Sports.

 

University of Glasgow Sport: https://www.gla.ac.uk/myglasgow/sport/

 

Further Information and Support Organisations

 

Mental Health Foundation: How to Look After Your Mental Health Using Exercise


Self-Harm

Self-harm is when you hurt yourself because you are trying to cope with difficult feelings, overwhelming situations or distressing memories and experiences.

Self-harm is usually a means of finding short-term relief from overwhelming emotions. Although it is seen as a short-term unhelpful coping strategy, it could also bring up  difficult emotions, such as shame, that could make you feel worse in the long term.

If you self-harm, it is important for you to take care of your injuries and have access to first aid. Lifesigns (http://www.lifesigns.org.uk/first-aid-for-self-injury-and-self-harm/) has information on how to care safely for self-harm injuries.

Alternatives to self-harm can involve delaying self-harming behaviours and ‘surfing’ the urge to self-harm, distraction and shifting attention onto other tasks or self-soothing activities, building tolerance and resilience to distressing situations or problem-solving solutions to life stressors that trigger self-harming behaviours.

If you are concerned about your own or someone else's self-harming behaviour you can find helpful guides and resources below.

You can also access the University support team 24/7 via Campus Security:

Tel: +44 (0) 141 330 4444 (ext. 4444)

Further Information

Charities and Support Groups


Stress and Relaxation

Stress can occur when we feel there is an imbalance between the demands we encounter and our perceived ability to cope with those demands. While heightened alertness can help to improve our performance in potentially stressful situations; for example, in preparing for assessments and exams, there is a danger that we can become overwhelmed when the demands feel excessive. This can lead to feelings of helplessness and fatigue, and can become damaging to our emotional and physical wellbeing if left unaddressed.

Further Information

Self-Help Exercises

Charities and Support Groups


University of Glasgow Students of Colour Network

This section provides information on the impacts of cultural bias and racism on mental health.