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Mental health and wellbeing


What is Mental Health?

Mental health is an essential component of health – it’s as important as our physical health and is essential to our overall wellbeing.

Mental health is defined by the World Health Organisation as ‘a state of wellbeing in which an individual realises his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to his or her community’

Having good mental health helps us to enjoy our lives more and to make the most of our potential.

What can I do to help my Mental Health?

There are many ways in which you can help look after your mental health. The Mental Health Foundation offer ten suggestions on practical ways and simple changes to help look after your mental health.You could also try some of these ideas to keep your spirits up:

  • Learn something new!  Try one of the courses in the Wellbeing collection available through the University's LinkedIn training account.

What if I am feeling down?

You are not alone.  Students should check the student wellbeing pages for more details of support available.

Managers or staff who are concerned about colleagues should check the guidance on how to access University mental health support.

If you’re a staff member and feel you may need some support, take a look at these avenues:

  • Confidential wellbeing chat - email if you’re feeling a bit down, or would just like a general chat.  An Occupational Health Practitioner (all nurses with wide- ranging experience) will arrange a suitable time during office hours with you.

  • Workplace support for your mental wellbeing – do you think you may be experiencing depression, anxiety, stress or other mental health issues affecting your work, or making you concerned about returning to work? If so, take advantage of this confidential, one-to-one workplace support funded by the Department of Work and Pensions and delivered by Remploy. You get nine months of virtual support including tailored work-focused mental health support, coping strategies and a personal support plan to help you keep in or return to work.  Email for an initial chat and to book a session.

  • Universities Chaplaincy - Chaplains come from different faith backgrounds and are here for staff of all faiths and all world views. For remote pastoral and spiritual support by appointment or virtual drop-in, contact (with your best availability, name and contact details, or leave a message on 0113 343 5071) or Muslim Adviser Farhat Yaqoob on 07713 707 857 or If you are a staff member in crisis you can call our 'out of hours' number 07780 613 862.  They will respond to you as soon as they can.

Disabled staff can also access the Business Disability Forum (DBF). As well as access to its team of experts, there’s a resource library with guidance, reserch, blogs and podcasts on a range of topics.

Dealing with anxiety around coronavirus:

General support for mental health includes:

  • 24 hour mental health helpline – for any West Yorkshire resident who is concerned about their mental health or that of their family members or those they care for.

  • Feel like you've had enough (crisis card) - support in times of crisis including  fordomestic violence, housing, young people, debt and bereavement. Some resources are Leeds-based and some are national. 

  • How are you feeling? - how to find the right support around mental health - aimed particularly at people in Leeds.

  • Leeds Mindwell – local and national mental health support for men, women, LGBT+ , BAME, young people, older people, parents, carers, people with disabilities or physical health problems and others. 

  • For help with finances - contact the National Debt Helpline or Stepchange for advice with debt,  For affordable financial services contact Leeds City Credit Union.

  • Check the NHS site Every Mind Matters for practical tips, videos, expert advice to help you look after your mental health (and wellbeing) – you can also create a personal NHS-approved Mind Plan.

Related Pages



Strategies for anxiety around coronavirus