Being Well In Academia

Academia can be amazing. And it can be really tough. If you’ve got a really supportive department you may still struggle with life events; while if your university is a place where bullying and abuse is tolerated you may find it really hard to cope.

I love the idea of academia but I’ve not always found it an easy place to work, and I remain frustrated by its many inequalities and apparent inability to recognise and address them. So I wrote a book to help you cope.

It’s called Being Well In Academia: ways to feel stronger, safer and more connected and you can get 20% at the checkout via that link using the code BSM20. The book’s part of the Insider Guides to Success In Academia Series edited by Helen Kara and Pat Thompson for Routledge.


Are you studying or working in academia and in need of support? Perhaps you’re finding your work, study or personal life challenging or overwhelming; are experiencing bullying, harassment or abuse; or find your progress is being blocked by unfair, exploitative or precarious systems? Or perhaps you want to support a friend or colleague who’s struggling? Whether your problems are big or small, Being Well in Academia provides a wealth of practical and workable solutions to help you feel stronger, safer and more connected in what has become an increasingly competitive and stressful environment.

This volume uses a realistic, pragmatic and – above all – understanding approach to offer support to a diverse audience. Covering a range of issues, it includes advice on:

  • Ways to increase your support network, so you’re not alone.
  • Reflections and actions that encourage you to evaluate your position.
  • Guidance if you are in a stressful, precarious, dangerous or exploitative situation.
  • Checklists and agreements to help you identify your specific needs and accommodations.
  • Signposting to books, websites, networks and organisations that provide additional support.
  • Ways to build your confidence and connections, particularly for Black, Indigenous or People of Colour; LGBTQ+; disabled or chronically sick; or other marginalised groups.
  • Reflections on your rights and the responsibilities academia should be meeting.
  • Tips for being an active bystander and helping others in need of assistance.
  • Ideas for resisting, challenging and coping with unfair or exploitative environments.
  • Suggestions for bringing you happiness, inspiration, motivation, courage and hope.

This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to address the need to stay well in academia, and will be particularly useful to those in diverse or disadvantaged positions who currently lack institutional support or feel at risk from academia.

You’ll find more resources to help with your rights wellbeing on this blog and as the book is designed to be a dialogue you can join in conversations about #BeingWellInAcademia with me on Twitter @drpetra and Insta @petraboynton Please let me know what you think – and if you like the book please leave reviews, tell your friends and share on your socials.

One response to Being Well In Academia

  1. Alena

    Reading the book right now, as it was featured in my university’s mental health awareness month’s library’s selection. I’m an international MA student with a preexisting mental health condition, doing quite an intense course and struggling on a new workplace, while trying to get suitable treatment on the NHS. I find this book very valuable in terms of the resources it offers, detailed a clear action plans for a variety of situations, and really appreciate the not imposing tone in which advice is given. Thank you!

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