My Well-Being During the Coronavirus Crisis

During this coronavirus outbreak and with the confinement that goes with it, it is more than ever important to take care of your health, mental and physical. 

We will try to share you some tips and to recap some services that are available for you during this period.

Mental Health

(info partially taken from the EDOC email we all received)

Remote work is mandatory and it can be difficult for some of us to adapt to an isolated, mostly online mode of life. During this exceptional period, several sources of stress and anxiety can occur.

EPFL’s social and psychotherapeutic consultations remain open and available to EPFL students. As the campus is closed, counseling is done by videoconference or phone.

Do you feel low, anxious, alone or isolated? Are you losing your motivation to study online? Do you feel out of sorts? Don’t wait, get in touch now with our social consultation specialists (free of charge). To make an appointment, please send an email to [email protected].

If you would like temporary medical support or advice, please contact the psychotherapeutic consultation service by email: [email protected].

For more information:


Our well-being page also summarizes some options available as well as the page, which provides a wide range of useful information.

Here are a few suggestions to help keep you going:

Set up a routine: Wake up at the same time every day, eat healthy food, keep your living space well-ventilated, stretch and breathe regularly. All these things will help keep your body and mind fresh.

Organize your work: Set up a weekly schedule for studying and doing other tasks, and take regular breaks. You may not be as productive as you wished and breaking your work in smaller and reasonable tasks will help you to decrease feeling of un-productiveness.

Maintain social interactions: Keep in regular contact with family, friends and EPFL acquaintances (e.g., by Zoom, during a break or join the PolyDoc discord servor).

If you have trouble following these suggestions, don’t wait – contact the social consultation specialists for individual and confidential support.

Remote work

The presence on the campus is strictly forbidden without an exceptional authorization from the DSPS and should only occur if there is no other solution and the situation is really urgent.

Some of us are faced with the dilemma to ask for such authorization to switch off a device, maintain or inactivate microorganisms cultures, etc… or staying home to protect their relatives. As said before, the presence of the campus is only authorized for urgent matter. If you are at risk, one of your relative is, if you are living far away, if you are not willing to come for any reason, it is perfectly acceptable.  Discuss the issue with your supervisor, some solutions can always be found (for e.g. can a colleague to it for me, are the consequences really bad if it stays like this, etc…). Nobody should feel bad or unprofessional, the situation is exceptional and health is the first thing that matters.

If you struggle with such issue, feel bad, unprofessional, guilty, don’t wait – contact the social consultation specialists for individual and confidential support.

Spiritual care

During this period, you can also be looking for some spiritual care. It can be either in the form of an exchange with one of the chaplain from the UNIL-EPFL chaplaincy team (composed of pastors, priest and lay chaplains) or by joining an activity such as guided meditation, themed discussion groups or creative breaks (to only cite a few) are also still ongoing. All the information on their activities is available here.

Physical health “Mens sana in corpore sano”

Self quarantine period should not be the reason to completely quit physical activities. Moreover, physical activities will help you to keep maintain a good mental health state. Individual outdoor sports are still authorized, as long as you keep the safety distance. Therefore, no excuse not to go jogging or biking outside ! 

If you prefer to stay inside, the UNIL-EPFL sport center provides some videos on activities to do at home here. They also shared this series of exercises that can be done daily at home. And you can always google some ideas of indoor sport activities.

PolyDoc initiatives

We know that transitioning to work-from-home and self-isolation can be difficult. In-person, face-to-face meetings with friends and colleagues can be valuable for our psychological well-being, and it can be tough to find other support options when we’re cooped up at home. With this in mind, PolyDoc wants to offer you a new outlet for connecting with your peers: a discord server dedicated to sharing with other PhDs and supporting each other, virtually!

You can join the discord server here: 

We hope that you can use this server to have a bit more human connection in the coming weeks. Feel free to share your struggles and strategies for coping with social distancing and to reach out to others if you are feeling lonely and disconnected. You are not alone! 

Additionally, We will try to organize some social activities, online of course, during the confinement such as at distance aperos, trivia night, movie parties, etc…
If you have an idea, let us know by email [email protected] or through the discord channel.