Health and Wellbeing, Managing your money

December Downloads: Apps to keep you on the right track

Tsvetina, Counselling, Health and Wellbeing placement student, shares her tips on the best apps on the market to help you get through the month of December …


December is known for its festive activities which bring joy to many but can also be frustrating for others. Winter recess is that time of the year when student houses get abandoned for a couple of weeks it can suddenly feel really quiet and lonely. When it gets chilly outside and the day becomes shorter our motivation levels may fluctuate and we can become isolated because we are staying home more. Winter depression could be one of the consequences which is why it is important to stay aware of our mood levels and remember to take care of ourselves in such tricky time of the year.

Keeping this in mind, we have kindly reviewed a couple of apps that focus on controlling negative thinking patterns, stress and anxiety to help you stay on track in December.

Being mindful of the fact that different methods work differently for everybody is essential in the process of tackling negative mood. Be patient and try to stay open to new coping strategies if some of them don’t work.


Positive Activity Jackpot

This app is absolutely amazing for those of you who find it hard to think of fun things to do and perhaps struggle with the motivation as well. It can help with all those times when we feel so grim that we think there is nothing out there to be done about it. Well, this app doesn’t think so – you get a random category like ‘Thoughts’ or ‘Physical activity’ and it generates relevant activities that you can take part in.


7 Cups

Want to talk to somebody but there is nobody around or maybe you feel uncomfortable talking about what troubles you in person? 7 cups is the answer to your problem. It offers anonymous and confidential chat with a trained listener who can be picked randomly or by topic. There are also some nice exercises that you can try out if you want to decrease your stress and anxiety levels.


Happiness Tips

A small thing can sometimes make a big difference – the same goes for this wonderful app that is full of small positive quotes that can brighten up your day. You can share the quotes with your friends or mark them as favourite. This app is ideal for getting that positive boost during the day in an easy and accessible way.



A mindfulness classic that is a great option for your break when you will have more time to start a new habit. Headspace offers a 10 days programme that gets you do a 10 minute guided mindfulness session each day in order to get you started with meditation. The app has been proven to help with wellbeing and is a good way to get a feeling of meditation in an user-friendly and accessible way.
When the seasonal festivities approach students also often immerse in prolonged shopping trips that can have quite a negative effect on their budget. It is easy to go beyond the limit when we are buying presents for our loved ones or even when we are just in the festive spirit which is why we thought we’d give you some handy apps that help you monitor your spending.


Level Money

This app can be incredible useful for those of you who find it hard to remember how much you spend on things and want to improve their finance awareness. It syncs with your bank account and is able to spot reoccurring incomes and spending. In this way it can predict your balance in the following months and flag up things that you spend too much money on. You can also set up a balance level that you want reach each month or after some time which the app would adhere to.


Mvelopes Budget App

Set up your financial account with this great app and start planning your budget now. It helps you plan how much you spend on different things like presents or mulled wine for a week and would notify you of you overspend or buy things that you don’t need. The envelope also links with up to 4 bank accounts.

Having a drink or two is also a major part of students’ holiday break but thoughts about units and recommended drinking does not come to mind to us that often. There are some great apps out there that can help you control your drinking easily wherever you are. Here are some suggestions:


Drink Aware

This is an amazing personalized app that requires your conscious input on each step to make your progress easier. You get to type in how much alcohol you’ve consumed for a week and the app generates a rating based on the government’s recommendations. You even get the equivalent to your consumption running time and number of burgers. The app also gives you different awards for your small achievements after each week and allows you to track the amount of money you spend on alcohol.


AlcoDroid Alcohol Tracker

AlcoDroid Alcohol Tracker helps you track your alcohol consumption and the effect it has on your health. It gives you estimated blood alcohol content and the time you are going to be sober after you input your consumption. Again you can set up goals and spot the drinks you have most often. You can also share or export your drink logbook and get a chart of your drinking habits weekly or monthly.


Your feedback and help please

Have you found this blog post useful?  Please help us by commenting in the bar below, and note any questions there too.

To help us aid more of your fellow students please re-tweet or share this post by using the share buttons or via twitter and facebook.

I hope you have found this helpful and I wish you a joyful winter break!


Best wishes,
Tsvetina, Placement Student.


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The Student Support Centre has a range of services dedicated to helping students make the most of their time at University, including: Advice & Money, Careers & Employability, Counselling, Health & Wellbeing, Disability & Dyslexia and International Student Support.

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