Waiting for your appointment

There are many helpful things you can do to support yourself while you are waiting for your appointment.

  • Read our checklist below for tips on how to take care of yourself.
  • Explore our list of recommended online mental health resources for good mental health information, online self-help programs, and apps.
  • Read about other students’ experiences and Counsellors' responses on our Ask Counselling blog.
  • Attend a workshop. These run throughout semester to support your study and wellbeing.

It can also be helpful to read about what to expect before your initial consultation or counselling session.

To be able to minimise wait times for everyone, we ask you to notify us as soon as possible if you are unable to attend a scheduled appointment so that this time can be offered to someone who is waiting.

While you’re waiting checklist

While you are waiting for your appointment, there are resources and strategies on this website to help you cope. Self help information is also available in the waiting area at the service.

Strategies for self-care:

  • Establish a daily routine.
  • Balance rest and activity.
  • Engage in physical activity of some kind (e.g. swimming, yoga, walking).
  • Eat well and don’t forget breakfast.
  • Avoid alcohol and drugs which can adversely affect mood.
  • Learn a relaxation strategy - our website has guided relaxation exercises.

Strategies for managing distress:

  • Reassure yourself that you can tolerate your feelings.
  • Don’t be afraid of your feelings.
  • Experience feelings as waves that come and go.
  • Remember times when you have felt different to now.
  • Put off acting on impulse.
  • Identify any part of your situation that you can change for the better.
  • Problem solve: define the problem and weigh up options.
  • If you feel that you may hurt yourself, ring Lifeline (13 11 14) or other emergency contacts.

Relationship strategies:

  • If you feel unable to be alone, it’s okay to ask a friend or family member to stay with you.
  • Choose to be with people who are supportive and care about you.
  • You may not be able to support others just now.
  • Say no to unwanted demands.
  • You may be irritable but try not to push people away who care about you.
  • Let someone know you may need support.
  • Do not assume that other people can’t cope with you or will not be interested in your wellbeing.

Strategies for building inner strength:

  • When you are going through a rough time, it is easy to focus on the negatives and not value other parts of yourself and your life that are still positive.
  • Reassure yourself that you will get through this.
  • Accept yourself. Do not criticise or blame yourself.
  • Do something every day that makes you feel competent or successful, no matter how small it may seem (e.g. tidying your desk).
  • Notice positive experiences (e.g., someone smiling at you).
  • Remember other times when you have solved a problem successfully.
  • Do things that make you smile or laugh (e.g. watching a funny TV show).
  • Limit viewing of distressing programs.