Skills for Good Health

Mindfulness and Meditation

Mindfulness is about learning to train your attention to the present moment without dwelling on what has happened in the past or worrying about the future. Mindfulness provides many physical and psychological benefits.

Mindfulness can be developed over time with practice. The basic practice or ‘meditation’ involves intentionally placing your attention on the breath and observing each rise and fall. It is natural that your mind will wander but part of the practice is being aware of when this happens and being able to gently redirect your mind to the present and back to the breath.

Benefits of mindfulness:

  • Reduce stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms
  • Increase resilience and peace of mind
  • Enhance cognitive performance eg. concentration, memory and processing speed
  • Improve study and work performance
  • Improve relationships and overall wellbeing

Useful resources

Take 10 – headspace: Simple and easy-to-learn meditation techniques for a happier, healthier and more balanced life. The free ‘Take10’ program offers an introduction to mindfulness practices and meditation either online or via the Headspace app.

Smiling mind is modern meditation, a unique web and app-based program developed by psychologists and educators to help bring balance to people's lives.

Stop, Breathe & Think offers options for checking in with how you are feeling. And based on this it offers different meditation practices. It also teaches you meditation and monitors your progress.

Time Management & Controlling Procrastination

Studying at university can be a busy time, which can make it harder for you to take the time to look after your mental wellbeing.

What is procrastination?

Procrastination means: ‘to put off till tomorrow’. Procrastination can be characterised as a breakdown in our ability to regulate and organise our thoughts and efforts to achieve an important outcome for ourselves within reasonable time.

Procrastination often occurs when we perceive negativity or unpleasantness in aspects of an upcoming priority. Typically we substitute a less important activity for the more important one. This pattern of delaying and postponing things can overtime make us feel anxious and stressed.

Tips for time management

What you think, will directly affect how you feel, which will directly affect what you do. Understanding between your thoughts, feelings and actions are important to overcoming procrastination.

You do have control over what you think, however it is important to acknowledge that it can be hard to ‘just change your thoughts’. Sometimes certain thoughts have been around for so long that I can feel like you have no control over them. Take time analyse your thoughts – write them down – sometimes people can get caught up in ‘thinking traps’ that affect how they view a situation. Here are some tips to examine the evidence of your thought and find a more ‘balanced’ view of the situation:

  • Stop avoiding
  • Estimate the time the task will take
  • Make lists
  • Give yourself reminders
  • Prepare study tools and eliminate distractions
  • Determine the best times of the day
  • Set aside time for others thoughts
  • Reward yourself
  • Organise support

Stay Connected

People with strong family or social connections are generally healthier than those who lack support network. Make plans with supportive family members and friends, or seek out activities where you can meet new people, such as club, class or support group.

Student events

SAIBT ensures that students who elect to study in Adelaide take full advantage of the opportunities that the city has to offer. Our focus is to provide all students assistance with the transition into Adelaide and provider greater integration with all local and international students.

SAIBT arranges a broad range of activities for students both on and off campus. Our BBQ's and bushwalking activities are popular as they provide students with the opportunities to relax and meet others.

Study Adelaide organises many sporting and social activities for international students in Adelaide. Popular activities include; The Lord Mayor's Welcome Party for International Students, Dundee's Wildlife Park, Twenty20 Cricket and BBQ Lunch, Day Tours, Learn to Surf and free tickets to soccer and Australian Rules Football games.


Volunteering is a great way to meet new people and make new friends while contributing to the community. Volunteering also allows you to gain some work experience skills to help you in the workforce once you graduate.

Clubs and societies

Students can join in a range of UniSA sporting and social clubs, a great way to develop a network of friends and become involved in the community. Basketball Buddies, a variety of soccer clubs and other informal student groups have developed to suit students who don't wish to commit to a full sporting program. Joining a club or a society is a great way to get involved, try new activities, and meet new people. You can find a list of the clubs at on the USASA website.

Students can join a local community or sporting club near to their home with the assistance of the Student Experience Coordinator.

Take steps to create and maintain relationship in your life. We are social beings who naturally seek connection with others. Without it, our wellbeing is compromised. Having friends and family to rely on is really important – they are people who we can celebrate our successes with, and who we can turn to in times of need.

Stress Management

Stress is part of everyday life. Stressful situations for students may include: meeting high academic demands, being in new environment, being away from home for the first time, sitting exams, financial restraints, finding a study/life balance.

Positive management of stress results in positive emotions such as enjoyment, satisfaction, enthusiasm and excitement.

Finding ways to increase coping resources will help students decrease the stressors that life will throw your way. Here are some practical tips:

  • Practice rational thinking
  • Develop assertive behaviours – learn to say ‘no’
  • Get a hobby or two
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat a balanced daily and avoid stress excess caffeine and alcohol
  • Learn and practice relaxation techniques
  • Use breathing techniques, to calm you down
  • Establish and make use of a good social network – talk with someone you can trust
  • When you studying for an exam: study in short blocks; take breaks
  • Remember to keep a balance between study and leisure

Useful mobile app

Calm: this app has been designed for sleep, meditation and relaxation. This is a great mindfulness app for beginners through to advanced users.