Recommended Resources and Self Help Materials

A variety of experiences and life events may impact upon your emotional, psychological and physical wellbeing.

Enhancing your personal insight, and your understanding and management of commonly occurring difficulties can help to improve your overall wellbeing and your enjoyment of your time at university.  

We have provided a range of resources in a variety of mediums that we hope you will find both helpful and interesting.

This list is not exhaustive and we always recommend that you seek advice from your GP regarding your physical and emotional health if you have concerns about your wellbeing.

Abuse, Assault and Harassment

Abuse, assault and harassment may take a number of forms.

Within this section you will find resources that may assist you in understanding and responding to experiences of abuse, and the impact that these experiences may have upon your adult life and wellbeing. Areas included in this section: bullying and harassment, childhood sexual abuse, domestic abuse, FGM, forced marriage and honour based violence, hate crime, and rape and sexual assault.

Aces too high:


Broken Rainbow:

Draw the Line:

The Hazlehurst Centre:


Love Don’t Feel Bad:

Muslim Youth Helpline:


Revenge Porn Helpline: 0345 6000 459 (Monday to Friday)



Survivors West Yorkshire:

West Yorkshire Police:

Victim Support:


Breaking Free: Help for Survivors Of Childhood Sexual Abuse: Ainscough & Toon (2000) Sheldon Press

Breaking Free Workbook: Ainscough & Toon (2000) Sheldon Press

Overcoming Childhood Trauma: Kennerley (2000) Constable & Robinson

Psychopath Free: Mackenzie (2015) Penguin

The Rape Recovery Handbook: Step by step help for survivors of sexual assault: Matsakis (2003) New Harbinger

The Survivor’s Guide: to recovery from rape and sexual abuse: Kelly, & Maxted, et al (2005) Rugby Rosa

Addictions and Harmful Behaviours

There are many ways in which you may learn to manage challenging emotions and situations, at times with helpful strategies, and at others with behaviours that may in themselves be harmful and maintain difficulties rather than ease them. Behavioural responses may take a number of forms, for example, alcohol and drug abuse, deliberate self injury or gambling. 

If you are experiencing difficulty with behaviours that you feel have become harmful you may find the following resources helpful in enhancing your understanding, managing and overcoming of problematic behaviours and addictions.

Alcohol and Drug Related

ADFAM, Families, drugs and alcohol:

Alcoholics Anonymous:

Drugs and Me:


Forward Leeds:

Narcotics Anonymous:


Smart Recovery:

Space at The Bridge Project:


Bottled Up: McMahon & Lewis (2010) Lion

The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober: Discovering a happy, healthy, wealthy alcohol-free life: Catherine Gray (2017) Octopus 

Deliberate Self Injury 

Life Signs:


Self Injury Support:


Cutting: Understanding and overcoming self-mutilation: Steven Levenkron (1999) W.W.Norton and Company

Healing the Hurt Within: 3rd edition: Understand Self-injury and Self-harm, and Heal the Emotional Wounds: Jan Sutton (2007) How to Books 

Self-help for self-injury: a guide for women struggling with self-injury: Bristol Crisis Service for Women


  • Calm Harm  


Gamblers Anonymous:


Money Information Centre:

NHS Help for Problem Gambling:

Sexual Behaviours 

Safer Lives:

Sex Addicts Anonymous in the UK:

Sexual Advice Association: Helpline: Telephone 02074 867262

Anxiety, Panic and Stress

Anxiety and stress are naturally occurring bodily responses that are generally helpful in assisting us to respond effectively to potentially dangerous situations. At times we may feel that demands upon us exceed our perceived capacity to cope, or, stress responses may feel disproportionate to the problem being faced and lead to overwhelming feelings of anxiety, panic or stress.

The resources in this section provide informative, practical and supportive materials to assist you in understanding your responses to stress and in managing a range of anxiety and stress based difficulties including, Generalised and Social Anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive disorders, panic, stress and worry. 



Anxiety Canada:

Anxiety Leeds:

Facing your Feelings:

Get Self Help: or

Improving Health Anxiety:

NHS Student Stress and Anxiety:


Anxiety at University: Student Wellbeing Series: Thompson (2019) Trigger 

The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook: Bourne (2015) New Harbinger Publications

Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway: Jeffers (2007) Vermillion 

Overcoming Anxiety: Kennerley (2014) Constable & Robinson

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder 

The Mix:

OCD Action:



Break Free from OCD: Challacombe & Oldfield et al (2011) Vermilion

Overcoming Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Veale and Wilson (2009) Robinson


No Panic:

Panic Stations:


Overcoming Panic and Agoraphobia: Silove & Manicavasagar (2009) Basic Books

Panic Attacks: Christine Ingram (2014) HarperCollins 

The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook: Davis, Robbins et al (2019) New Harbinger Publications 

Teach Yourself Managing Stress: Looker & Gregson (2010) Hodder Arnold 

Social Anxiety 

Quiet Revolution:

Shy No Longer:

Social Anxiety:

What? Me Worry!?!


Overcoming Social Anxiety & Shyness: Butler (2016) Constable & Robinson 

Quiet: Cain (2013) Penguin

TED Talks

  • How to make stress your friend
  • What fear can teach us


  • De-stress-ify
  • Daylio
  • E-couch
  • Flowy
  • Headspace
  • Mindshift –Coping with Anxiety
  • Moodgym
  • Pacifica
  • REBT
  • SAM: Self-help for anxiety management 
  • Stop Panic and Anxiety

Bereavement and Loss

The loss of loved one or someone that we know can bring a range of emotions that may at times feel intense or unfamiliar. Experiences of loss and the feelings that loss can evoke may be especially stressful during your time at university.

Below you will find details of services and self-help resources that can provide you with support during or following a bereavement. 


Hope Again:

Leeds Suicide Bereavement Service:

Support After Murder and Manslaughter:


Facing Grief: Bereavement and the Young Adult: Wallbank (1991) Lutterworth Press

Healing After the Suicide of Loved One: Smolin, et al, (1993) Simon and Shuster

How To Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies: Rando (1998) Bantam 

On Grief and Grieving: Finding meaning of grief through the five stages of loss: Kubler-Ross (2014) Scribner Book Company

On the Death of a Parent: McLoughlin (Ed) (1994) Virago Press 

Overcoming Grief: Morris (2008) Robinson 

A Special Scar: The experiences of people bereaved by suicide: Wertheimer (2013) Routledge 

Silent Grief: Living in the Wake of Suicide: Lukas & Seiden (2007) Jessica Kingsley Publishers

The Other Side of Sadness: What the New Science of Bereavement Tells Us About Life After Loss: Bonanno (2010) Basic Books

When Parents Die: Abrams (1999) Routledge 

TED talks

  • We don’t ‘move on’ from grief. We move forward with it.

Body image and healthy relationships with food

Our eating habits and the relationship that we have with food and our bodies accompany us throughout our lives, and may at times feel problematic. Sometimes these problems may become a concern and help may be needed to understand our relationship with food and our bodies, and to take back some control.  The services and self-help resources below may help you in understanding and improving both your relationship with food, your body, and your body image.

These resources are not designed to replace professional medical advice and if you have concerns regarding your eating habits and your relationship with food it may be advisable to seek advice and support from your GP or medical professional. 

Anorexia and Bulimia Care:


Body Gossip:

The Body Positive:


NHS The Yorkshire Centre for Eating Disorders:

The Recover Clinic:


Body Dysmorphia:

Building Body Acceptance:

Overcoming Disordered Eating: Part A:

Overcoming Disordered Eating: Part B:


Anorexia Nervosa – A survival guide for families, friends and sufferers: Treasure (1997) Psychology Press

Bulimia Nervosa & Binge Eating: A guide to recovery: Cooper (1995) Constable & Robinson 

Getting Better Bite by Bite: A survival kit for sufferers of Bulimia Nervosa and binge eating disorders: Schmidt & Treasure et al (2015) Psychology Press  

On Eating: Orbach (2002) Penguin Books

Overcoming Anorexia Nervosa - A self help guide using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques: Freeman & Cooper (2019) Robinson

Overcoming Overeating: Hirschman & Munter (2000) Da Capo/Lifelong

The Time In Between: A Memoir of Hunger and Hope: Tucker (2016) Icon Books

The Invisible Man: A self-help guide for men with eating disorders, compulsive exercise and bigorexia: Morgan (2008) Routledge

Understanding Your Eating: How to Eat and not Worry About It: Buckroyd (2011) Open University Press

TED Talks

  • Why thinking you’re ugly is bad for you
  • Applications
  • Recovery Record
  • Rise-Up

Confidence, assertiveness and self-esteem

Confidence and assertiveness are skills that can be learned and can accompany and nurture positive self-esteem and a healthy self-concept. Confidence in yourself and your abilities can enable you to do the things that you would like to, and to confront new and unfamiliar challenges and activities. 

The resources in this section have been selected to help you develop these skills.

Assert Yourself:

Gratitude Journal:

Rainy Brain Sunny Brain:

Building Self-Compassion:


Improving Self-esteem:


Assert Yourself: Lindenfield (2001) Harper Collins 

Overcoming Low Self-Esteem: Fennell (2016) Constable & Robinson 

Change for the Better: Wilde McCormick (2017) Sage 

Helping Adolescents and Adults to Build Self-Esteem: Plummer (2014) Jessica Kingsley Publishers

Self Esteem: Simple Steps to Develop Self-worth and Heal Emotional Wounds: Lindenfield (2000) Harper Collins 

Self Esteem: McKay & Fanning (2016) New Harbinger Pubs 

TED Talks

  • Dare to disagree
  • The power of introverts
  • The power of vulnerability
  • Your body language shapes who you are

Crisis and Emergency 

There may be times when you feel that you are unable to cope, or when you experience frightening or suicidal thoughts or behaviours that evoke fears regarding your ability to keep yourself safe.

It is important that you keep yourself safe so should you feel that you are becoming increasingly at risk, in the case of an emergency please contact:

  • Your GP
  • Leeds Student Medical Practice: 0113 295 4488 
  • Crisis Team through SPA 0300 300 1485 
  • Connect Helpline 0800 800 1212 9 (Open 365 days 6pm – 2am) 
  • The Samaritans: Freephone 116 123
  • Nightline: 0113 380 1381

Crisis Intervention Online



Give us a shout: Text line: 85258;


Suicide Prevention



Depression and Low Mood

As human beings we are designed to respond to experiences and life events, and to experience a range of emotions, thoughts and sensations, some enjoyable, and at times, some challenging or painful. At times, feelings of sadness and low mood may feel intense or persist for more sustained periods of time, manifesting as depression and/or getting in the way of enjoying and engaging in daily life, relationships and activities.

There are a wealth of resources available to help you understand and manage low mood and depression, including local and national services, literature, online resources and applications. 

Back from the Bluez:

Students against Depression:

Student Minds:


Dealing with depression: Shreeve (2010) Piatkus 

Depression @ University: Student Wellbeing Series: Thompson (2019) Trigger                                                 

Depression - The Way out of Your Prison: Rowe (2003) Brunner Routledge 

I Had a Black Dog: Matthew Johnstone (2007) Robinson 

Mind Over Mood: Change How You Feel By Changing the Way You Think: Greenberger & Padesky (2015) The Guildford Press

Overcoming Depression: Gilbert (2009) Robinson 

Seasonal Affective Disorder

MIND Seasonal Affective Disorder:

NHS Seasonal Affective Disorder:

Royal College of Psychiatrist:


  • Black Rainbow
  • Catch it
  • Mood GYM
  • MoodMission
  • Mood Panda
  • Moodscope 
  • Pacifica
  • What’s Up

Enhancing and enjoying your academic experience 

Your studies here at the University of Leeds will provide you with the opportunity to have an enjoyable and challenging exploration of your chosen field of interest. At times the demands of your studies may prove difficult and the resources in this section can help you understand, enhance and manage your academic performance and the emotions and anxieties stresses that may arise particularly at key times in the academic calendar. Topics in this section include exam stress, procrastination, and time management.

Exam Stress:


Putting Off Procrastinating!!:

The Pomodoro Technique:

Marinara Timer (online Pomodoro timer):

Study Skills:

Wait But Why:


The Antidote: Happiness for people who can't stand positive thinking: Oliver Burkeman (2018) Canongate Books

Beating the Comfort Trap: Windy Dryden and Jack Gordon (1993) Sheldon Press

The Chimp Paradox: Prof Steve Peters (2012) Ebury Publishing

Isn’t it about time: How to stop putting things off and get on with your life: Andrea Perry (2002) Worth Publishing

Writing your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes a Day: Joan Bolker (1998)

Emotional Intelligence and Resilience

Emotions possess the power to be enjoyable, providing colour and texture within our human experience. The capacity to recognise, understand and manage our emotions offers the potential to enhance the quality of our relationship with ourselves, and with others, the quality of our lives and overall wellbeing.  

The resources in this section have been selected to encourage personal insight and understanding of emotions, and to enhance the capacity for emotional regulation, resilience, and the nurturing of self-compassion and a growth mindset.

Anger Self-help Guide MOOD JUICE:

Get Self Help:

The Growth Mindset:

Learning Connection Stanford University:


Mind Tools:

The Mix:

Resilience Toolkit:


Students Against Depression:


Destructive Emotions and How We Can Overcome Them: A dialogue with the Dalai Lama: Goleman (2003) Bloomsbury

Emotional Resilience: How to safeguard your mental health: Barry (2018) Orion Spring

Life: You Can't Stop the Waves But You Can Learn How to Surf!: Shervington & Seymour (2012) MX Publishing 

Mindset: Changing the way you think to fulfil your potential: Dweck (2017) Robinson

Search Inside Yourself: The Unexpected Path to Achieving Success, Happiness: Tan (2012) Harper Collins

The Silent Guides: The new book from the author of The Chimp Paradox: Professor Steve Peters (2018) Lagom

The mindful path to self-compassion: freeing yourself from destructive thoughts and emotions: Germer (2009) The Guildford Press

The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook: A Proven Way to Accept Yourself, Build Inner Strength, and Thrive: Neff & Germer (2018) The Guildford Press

TED Talks

  • The gift and power of emotional courage
  • Why some anger can be good for you

The Power of Belief; Mindset and Success: Eduardo Brienco (Youtube)




We are each unique individuals consisting of multiple aspects of ourselves which together form our sense of identity.  Understanding our sense of identity and its formation can help to better understand who we are and create authentic ways of being, living and relating.

The resources and materials below have been selected to help enhance personal insight and understanding, and to encourage contact with forums and societies that may enhance a sense of connection and community.  


AGE UK Advice line:

Hidden abuse: older women:

Lifelong learning resource – handbook for mature students:


What is mental health? Bilingual Chinese / English information resource:

The W adaptation curve -a predictable pattern of stages experienced during culture shock:

Studying abroad - culture shock video:


I’m not your inspiration thank you very much! Dealing with attitudes towards disability:


Gendered Intelligence:


LGBT Switchboard:


MindLine Trans:

RUComing out:




Loving Ourselves - The Gay and Lesbian Self Esteem Book: Kimeron Hardin (2008) Alyson Books 

Transexed and Transgendered people: a guide: Purnell (2005) Glenys Conferences

Mental Health 

Your mental health and wellbeing is an important part of your life and your experience at university. 

Whether working with the University Mental Health Advisors, external services or choosing to manage your diagnosis by yourself, the following organisations, resources and forums can help you understand and manage your mental health and wellbeing. 

Insert link to Mental Health section:

Beating Bipolar:

bipolar UK:

Equilibrium: The Bipolar Foundation:

Heads Together:

How to Cope with Student Life:

Mental Health:

Mental Health Matters:


National Institute of Mental Health:

Personality Disorder:

Think Twice:

Time to Change:


Re think:


Student Minds:

Young Minds:

TED Talks

  • A tale of mental illness – from the inside
  • On being just crazy enough
  • The voices in my head
  • What’s so funny about mental health?


Neurodiversity recognises and respects the diversity of neurological differences and the infinite variation of cognitive functioning experienced by human beings. 

The diversity of variation can include: Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Dyscalculia, Autistic Spectrum, Tourette’s syndrome, and others. Below you will find a range of services, resources, literature and TED Talks relating to neurodiversity.

Autism Leeds:

Leeds Autism AIM:

Leeds Autism Services:

Lighthouse Future Trust:

Living Autism:

Spectrum Women:

Specialist Autism Services:

Tourettes Action:

Tourettes Hero:

Help Guide (ADHD):

The Dyslexia Association:


Making Sense: A Guide to Living with Adult ADHD:


The Asperger Dictionary of Everyday Expressions: Stuart-Hamilton (2006) Jessica Kingsley Publishers

What Men with Asperger’s Syndrome Want to Know About Women, Dating and Relationships: Aston (2012) Jessica Kingsley Publishers

TED Talks

  • How Autism freed me to be myself
  • How I learned to communicate my inner life with Asperger’s
  • The world needs all kinds of minds

Physical and Sexual Health

In this section you will find resources selected to help you in responding to physical and sexual health needs. 

Further information regarding available support and resources located within the University and designed to assist you managing long term and persistent health issues, can be found within the Disability Services webpage. 

Disability Services:

Physical Health

Action for ME:

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome NHS:

Diabetes NHS:

Epilepsy Society:

Learning to live well with Chronic Illness/ Conditions:

ME Association:

Multiple Sclerosis Trust:

Pain Management NHS:

Sexual Health

British Pregnancy and Advisory Service:

Leeds Centre for Sexual Health – NHS:

Leeds Sexual Health:

Leeds Student Medical Practice – Contraception and Sexual Health:

Marie Stopes:




Relationships are an integral part of our lives. 

The quality of relational experiences and interpersonal interactions can impact, inform and influence the quality of past, present and future relationships with others, and that with our selves. The resources below have been chosen to help enhance personal and interpersonal awareness, communication and relationships.   


Centre for Nonviolent Communication:

Help Guide:

Love is Respect:

Marriage Care:




Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most: Bruce Patton, Douglas Stone, et al. (2011)Penguin Books

Difficult Conversations: What to say in tricky situations without ruining the relationship: Dickson (2006) Piatkus

How to cope with difficult parents: Dryden and Gorden (1995) Sheldon

How to Start a Conversation and Make Friends: Gabor (2011) Sheldon 

Loving Yourself Loving Another: Julia Cole (2001) Vermillion 

Relating Skills: Richard Nelson-Jones (1996)

Surviving a Borderline Parent: How to Heal Your Childhood Wounds and Build Trust, Boundaries and Self-Esteem: Roth & Friedman (2005) Raincoast Books

The Drama of Being a Child: The Search for the True Self: Miller (1995) Virago

Toxic Parents: Forward and Buck (2002) Bantam

The Right To Speak - Working with the Voice: Patsy Rodenburg (2003) Methuen 

Women Who Love Too Much: Norwood (2004) Pocket Books

TED Talks

  • A better way to talk about love
  • The difference between healthy and unhealthy love
  • The science of attraction
  • The secret to living longer may be your social life

Successfully Managing Change and Transition

Change is a frequent and inevitable event in all of our lives.

Leaving home and coming to university invites multiple changes, some anticipated and some unexpected, some enjoyed and some challenging.  Change happens. We may or may not seek change, or necessarily agree with it. The pace of change may be fast or slow and involve a period of transition moving from the familiar through the unknown and onto establishing the new norm. 

The materials in this section have been selected to help you understand and successfully manage the move to university. 

Feeling at Home in Leeds:


How to Cope with Student Life:

Living in the UK:

Settling In:

Starting University:

Top Tips for Starting at University:


UK Council for International Student Affairs:


A Guide to Uni Life: The one stop guide to what university is REALLY like: Lucy Tobin (2015) Trotman Publishing

Fresher Pressure: Aiden McFarlane et al (1994) Oxford Paperbacks

How to Survive University: An Essential Pocket Guide: Tamsin King (2016) Gift Books

Letters to a Law Student: A guide to studying law at university: McBride (2017) Pearson

Places of the Heart: Colin Ellard (2015) Bellevue Literary Press

Resourcefulness @ University: Dr Dominique Thompson (2019) Trigger Publishing

Space and Place: The Perspective of Experience Paperback: Yi-Fu Tuan (2001) University of Minnesota Press

Starting University: What to Expect, How to Prepare, Go and Enjoy (The Essential Student Guide):  Melissa Scallan, Louise Salmon, et al. (2019) Katelli Publishing

Staying Well and Safe @ University: Dr Dominique Thompson (2019) Trigger Publishing

Uni Lifehacks: Insights from the UK's Most Successful Students: MacGill & Jacob (2017)


Events perceived by the nervous systems as life threatening to ourselves, our loved ones or to others, can evoke a complex response that may feel debilitating or overwhelming for emotional, cognitive, physiological, relational or spiritual day to day functions and functioning.  

Trauma may be a single one-time event, a prolonged event or a series of events over the life-time. The resources below have been selected to help you understand your experience and to aid alleviating some of the symptoms that you may be experiencing in relation to trauma. 

Please note that these resources are not designed to be a replacement for professional medical advice. 


8 Keys to Safe Trauma Recovery: Babette Rothschild (2010)

Coping with Birth Trauma and Postnatal Depression: Lucy Jolin  (2019) Sheldon

Healing Trauma: Peter Levine (2008) Sounds True

Onions: peeling back the layers - poetry in the process of recovering from trauma: Rebecca Anne Perry (2018) Perry 2

Recovering from Trauma Workbook: A Journey of Healing for Addicts, Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACoAs) and Trauma Survivors: Dayton PhD (2016) Tian

The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma: Bessel van der Kolk (2014) Penguin

Trauma is Really Strange: Stephen Haines (2019) Singing Dragon

Trauma Survivors' Strategies for Healing: A Workbook to Help You Grow, Rebuild, and Take Back Your Life: Welsh PhD, Elena (2018) Althea Press

TED Talks 

  • Art can heal PTSD’s invisible wounds
  • The psychology of post-traumatic stress disorder


Wellbeing is a multifaceted concept consisting of our mind, body, emotion, spirit, relationships and environment. Nurturing the fundamentals of self-care, such as exercise, nutrition, relationship, relaxation and sleep can help to enhance a holistic sense of wellbeing and the quality of mental health. 

Meditation and Relaxation Downloads:

Keeping Active:

LUU Clubs and Societies:

British Dietetics Association: Food and Mood:

How to get to sleep:

How to Look After Your Mental Health Using Exercise:

MIND Food and Mood:

MIND 5 Ways to Wellbeing:

National Sleep Foundation:

NHS 5 Ways to Wellbeing:

Sleeping Resources:

What is Sleep Hygiene:


Getting a Good Night’s Sleep: Fiona Johnston (2004) Random House

The Exercise Effect on Mental Health: Neurobiological Mechanisms: Wegner & Budde (2018) Routledge

Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World:

Williams & Penman (2011) Piatkus

The Little Book of Mindfulness: 10 minutes a day to less stress, more peace: Patrizia Collard (2014) Gaia Books

Why We Sleep: The New Science of Sleep and Dreams: Matthew Walker (2017) Scribner