Our society is used to going full speed ahead, driving in fifth gear, and working on overdrive. Oftentimes, we feel week, tired, stressed, and overwhelmed from our busy schedules. This summer, take care of your health and your well-being by taking the time to unwind Relaxing will give you more energy, a stronger immune system, and higher concentration and problem solving abilities.
Allow yourself transition time.
For many students, it is the times in between that are the most stressful; the time in between classes, headed to work, or prior to meeting with a professor or a supervisor. Often, we find ourselves rushing to get somewhere, worrying about being late, and getting angry at the car in front of us for driving two miles under the speed limit. These transition times can become very overwhelming and add a lot of apprehension to our busy days. However, taking the time to prepare for transitions ahead of time, and taking a few deep breaths will help you to rest in the moment so that you can comfortably begin the next task. Use these transition times to take mini breaks during the day. Drink some water, have a snack, stretch, or take a walk outside. Instead of worrying about being late, focus on preparing yourself for the next activity and enjoying your day.
When there are so many things to do in a day, it is easy for our daily routines to feel a little chaotic. Instead of feeling overwhelmed by everyday stressors, create a To-Do list to organize your thoughts and visually put all your tasks in order. Take control of your schedule by planning designated time frames to complete each task so that you do not have to deal with the guilt and stress of procrastination. Make sure that you give yourself a small reward each time that you accomplish a task, and also big reward when you complete your list! Organizing your closet, your room, or your workspace is great to do if you are stressed because it involves physical movement that serves as an outlet for anxious energy. When our environments are less cluttered, we are able to think more clearly. Not only will you feel less distracted but you will be more productive and focused.
Get lost in a book.
The bottom floor of the library has book sales. These happen a few times a month and books are fifty cents each. I usually end up leaving with a giant stack of books for only a few bucks. Pick up anything that interests you, even if it has nothing to do with what you are studying. It is rejuvenating to be immersed in literature. It places you in a different reality, and allows you to experience a different perspective than your own. Books are portable, and provide entertainment for any boring transitions that our life requires. With all of the digital distractions today, our brain can be overwhelmed with stimulation, lights, and sounds leaving us feeling drained and tired. Read out loud to yourself, to your friends, or to your cat.
Create something new.
Cook a new recipe that you have never tried before! Foodnetwork.com has tons of yummy easy dishes to make. Paint a landscape picture and give it to a friend. Record a video and put it on You Tube. Have a photo-shoot of you and your friends. Plant a beautiful flower garden. You do not have to be exceptionally skilled to create something, you just have to be willing to explore. Have no expectations of the outcome. Just be satisfied with the creative process and what the creative process is all about. It feels good to let go and become absorbed into creating something, all that you have to do is give it a try!
Call up a friend.
Research illustrates that being connected to a cohesive social cohort promotes cognitive flexibility and emotional stability. Having close friends to share your memories with make life more meaningful and enjoyable. Hanging out with playful exciting people can help us to see the positive outlook in life. Great friends are priceless, and they are awesome stress relievers. ASI has a multitude of different opportunities for you to get involved and meet fascinating new people to keep you happy and healthy. Stop by the ASI Hot Spot on the first floor of the University Union.