14 February 2024

Tips to Maintain Your Wellbeing | Study With New Zealand

Theo Spruyt
Global Digital Content Specialist | Education New Zealand

To ensure that your time in New Zealand is as positive and constructive as possible, it’s important to focus on your wellbeing while studying. With physical, mental, and spiritual components, there are numerous ways to take care of your wellbeing.

When we feel supported, physically, and mentally healthy, and emotionally balanced, we're better equipped to engage with learning, retain information, and perform well academically. Our emotional and mental state greatly impacts our ability to focus, manage stress, and navigate challenges effectively, too.


Regularly taking part in physical activity is a simple way to boost your overall sense of wellbeing. Whether you do this alone, in a pair, or a group, there are plenty of different ways that you can get active.

Many people report feeling better when they undertake regular physical activity, and with New Zealand’s love of sport, many Kiwis clearly agree! No matter how you do it, you’ll have plenty of options to choose between when it comes to physical activity.

Sometimes called a ‘runner’s high’, physical activity may help improve your body’s production of endorphins, which are neurotransmitters that help you feel better. As well as producing positive hormones, physical activity can also reduce negative hormones too.

Some of the most popular physical activities enjoyed in New Zealand include:

  • Team sports, like rugby, cricket, netball, and football/soccer
  • Individual sports, like tennis, cycling, golf, and boxing/martial arts
  • Water sports, like swimming, surfing, sailing, and diving
  • Winter sports, like skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, and ice skating
  • Or other activities, like working out at the gym, nature hikes, and walking

Another aspect of your physical wellbeing is your health. If you get sick or injured, make sure to take proper care of yourself, and visit your local doctor (also called a GP/general practitioner in New Zealand) or hospital for further care if needed.


Thanks to the New Zealand Bill of Rights, New Zealand is a nation where everyone can openly express their faith, worship freely, and live without religious discrimination. In the most recent national census, about half of all New Zealanders said they had some sort of religious belief.

Across the country, you’ll find a variety of different houses of worship, faith-based community groups, and so much more that you can become a part of. For many people, spirituality is one of the core tenets of their lives, and New Zealand offers them support and spiritual nourishment.

Among the many extra-curricular clubs and societies offered by education providers, you’ll often find several faith-based student groups representing faiths from around the world.

Spirituality helps people deal with real-world issues by giving them a sense of purpose, peace, and forgiveness. Beyond that, it can also provide a higher sense of inner strength, hope, and meaning. Communities based around spirituality can be tight knit, with strong relationships and support offered within them.

For more information about practising your religion in New Zealand, check out this blog on the NauMai NZ website.


When it comes to maintaining your mental wellbeing, it is important to treat it as an ongoing process rather than something to ‘fix’ when it needs attention.

Developed by the New Economics Foundation, the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’ are small but meaningful actions that you can do repeatedly throughout your week, and all add up to impact your life.

These are:

  • Connect | Me whakawhanaunga

Connecting with those important to us – either in person, over the phone or online – is crucial for your overall mental health. Social circles not only make us feel happier, but also make us feel important and that we belong.

Even though you may be far from family and friends back home, staying in communication with them is important to keep you grounded and healthy.

  • Be Active | Me kori tonu

As mentioned above, regular physical activity helps you feel better physically and mentally.

One key benefit to regular physical exercise is that the positive feelings you experience from exercise can become amplified over time, rather than fading away after a workout. This means you’ll notice increased feelings of wellbeing as you stay committed to a consistent exercise routine!

  • Keep learning | Me ako tonu

Even though you’re thinking about studying in New Zealand, your education doesn’t have to be limited to the classroom! You’re going to be immersed in new cultures and surroundings, and a healthy sense of curiosity will be rewarded with incredible new experiences and feelings.

You don’t need to try to learn everything in one go, though – take it easy on yourself and let these lessons happen naturally!

  • Take notice | Me aro tonu

By being ‘in the moment’, you’re aware of your surroundings and how you feel. Taking notice is important for your overall wellbeing and mental health, as it helps you understand exactly what makes you feel happy, comfortable, and safe, as well as what makes you feel the opposite.

It’s also important because being genuinely present instead of worrying or thinking ahead is good for us – it helps us feel happier about our lives as they are now.

  • Give | Tukua

In this case, ‘giving’ is more about kindness than giving something like money or gifts. It’s about thinking of others, of their needs and how we can help. Sharing what you have, whether it’s skills, time or resources, makes you feel good, strengthens your wellbeing, and can help you feel more connected.

If you’re feeling stretched, it might seem like a big ask – to give to others when you don’t feel like you’ve got much left in the tank. And remember - don’t give more than you have to give!

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About the contributors
Theo Spruyt
Global Digital Content Specialist | Education New Zealand