Exeter, Devon UK • Jul 19, 2024 • VOL XII

Exeter, Devon UK • [date-today] • VOL XII
Home Lifestyle FeelingOurWay: an Exeter wellbeing Instagram

FeelingOurWay: an Exeter wellbeing Instagram

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FeelingOurWay: an Exeter wellbeing Instagram

The Exeter University Student Guild’s DVP Wellbeing, Lizzie Connick, discusses the launch of a new Instagram wellbeing page.

What is ‘FeelingOurWay’?

It is an Instagram page promoting mental wellness and positivity on campus. The aim of the page is to encourage a desire to feel content and at peace with the fact that things can always get better. It will essentially be a culmination of different stories from diverse people on campus talking about the ways in which they tackle challenges that affect their mental health, or otherwise, on the daily and how they overcome small thorns.

Why do we need it?

I have noticed a tendency amongst young people to talk about what is going wrong in our lives: “I’m so bored”, “I don’t want to go to my lecture”, “I’m so tired”, even if, in fact, we feel the opposite. These phrases become conversation starters when there is a lull. It is incredibly damaging, as you know, to concentrate and leap off of only the negative parts of life. This page would instead ask you to acknowledge that bad feeling “I didn’t enjoy that lecture at all, it was so confusing and it made me feel incredibly stressed” BUT then also explain what you did to step through that challenge and start to move forward: “therefore I took myself off to see a film that I had been desperate to see for ages and never got round to, I sat on my own in the dark for 2 hours, ate popcorn and felt total peace.”

These reflections don’t need to be long, deep, life-altering or profound. I just ask that they are truthful, honest and forward-looking. I truly believe that we can change the environment for young people by accepting the thorns in our lives, of course, but also celebrating our joy, contentment, peace and the roads we take to get there. By trying to move on from a situation we are not invalidating those negative feelings. We are acknowledging them, accepting them but also trying our best to not let them weigh us down, and instead find the right route to overcoming that feeling.

How does it work?

Each week I will be posting three times, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. These posts will contain one anonymous reflection from a student and an illustration will accompany the words. I hope that by following the page students feel encouraged to try out the tactics used by others, for example, reading a post about someone who likes to run to clear their head might encourage someone else to start running when they feel anxious/stressed. It’s about finding what works for you.

How can you get involved?

Many ways!

  1. You can contribute an anonymous reflection. To do this, head to the ‘Feeling Our Way’ Instagram page where there will be an anonymous survey for you to complete in a few easy steps. Like reading them, writing these paragraphs is incredibly cathartic. Writing a paragraph is super easy: Tell us about something that got you down this week/day/month/year and then explain the steps you are taking to move forward with that sadness/upset/trauma.
  2. You can be an illustrator for the page! The idea is to showcase one artist every three weeks, so if you are interested in drawing, art, illustration or just want to try your hand at it, this is definitely a good place to start. You have total creative freedom!
  3. If you would like to be involved in another way please do let me know or drop me an email (dvpwellbeing@exeterguild.com)

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