College students often feel overwhelmed and overworked by the pressures of campus life. As we dive deeper into the semester it is easy to forget about self-care and become distracted by the stressors of daily life. One of the best things anyone can do (and the thing that is often hardest to do) is to invest time and energy into yourself.
Spring break is a great time to relax and reset. As we go into break and the last half of the semester, take note of the following self-care and stress management strategies that will help keep you grounded throughout the day, weeks, and months:
Get outside There’s nothing better than some fresh air and sunshine to clear your head and brighten your day. We are stuck in the classroom for a good portion of the day so be sure to change the scenery! Studying outdoors is a great way to make your day a little more tolerable. The next time you begin to feel overwhelmed, take advantage of the South Carolina sunshine and step outside to reset.
Exercise Moving your body is a great way to release stress. Exercise is an opportunity to care for yourself both physically and mentally. Find your favorite way to move your body and have fun with it! Take your dog on a walk, play tennis with a friend, or go on a hike. When it comes to exercise the options are endless and so are the benefits!
Spend time with a friend Spending quality time with people in your support system is a great way to ease your stress. Squeezing a quick coffee date or phone call into a busy day, or setting an entire day aside to hang with a friend can be just what you need to decompress from your busy life.
Write it down Grab a journal and pen and start writing it out, good or bad. Getting your thoughts out on paper will help you sort them out in a healthy way and can serve as a benchmark to look back on. A journal is a great tool for you to calm and organize their thoughts, especially when you have a lot going on.
Go on a drive, walk or run, and listen to your favorite songs Music is a powerful tool that can help motivate you in many ways. Create a playlist that brings you joy and elevates your day. Listen to it on the way to class, on a run, or in your car. This is a sure way to help boost your mood or ease some stress from your day.
Get creative Creativity looks different to different people. Outlets to express your creativity include cooking, drawing, dancing, taking pictures, or even just picking out an outfit that makes you feel great. Whatever it is, getting creative and expressing yourself is a great form of self-care that helps relieve stress.
SmileAnd finally… Smile! It sounds silly, but smiling is actually proven to help reduce the intensity of stress on the body (www.smithsonianmag.com).
I hope this list inspires you to find balance in your life and take some well-deserved time for yourself. It is so important!
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