We as students are subject to ridiculously hectic schedules, especially those of us who are inundated with work or perhaps extracurricular activities where participation is an obligation. Making time for self care may seem like an impossible prospect when you're entrenched in assignments and deadlines, but I believe there is something to be said for playing as hard as you work in order to make your work the best it can be. Here are a few ways you can make time to help preserve your sanity as the second half of the semester kicks into gear.

1. Reserve a day and budget your time.

Take one day a week and clear your schedule as much as possible. This might mean judiciously budgeting homework and other activities, but selectively allowing yourself a little time away from your work will allow you to come back to it with a fresh, inspired set of eyes.

2. Get out of Dodge for the day.

If you can manage it, remove yourself from your work entirely and leave town for the day. Even if this means taking a brief cruise around the back roads, a simple drive with the windows down and the stereo up can do therapeutic wonders.

3. Have a movie marathon.

This is one of my personal favorite things to do and is also perhaps the easiest thing on this list to make happen. Check out your local video store or even your library (the DVD collection at OSU's Edmon Low Library is actually quite impressive) and spend the day vegging out.

4. Visit your local animal shelter.

Who doesn't love cats and dogs? Rescues are almost always looking for volunteers to come visit and play with their animals. It's a truly lovely way to spend a day plus it helps these animals become socialized while they wait on their forever homes. You might leave with puppy or kitten fever, though.

5. Read for fun.

Being that there is typically a lot of reading associated with the college experience, this is probably the last thing you want to see hence why I put it at the bottom of this list. With that point aside, there is nothing like curling up with a good book and a good cup of tea (or whatever your preferred drink may be). This is a particularly good activity for a rainy day.

Taking time to relax often gets conflated with being lazy or otherwise shirking your responsibilities, but I would be one to argue in the opposite direction. We often become so in thrall to our robotic daily existence that we cast aside the preservation of our sanity in the name of getting work done. As important as meeting deadlines and accomplishing assignments is, you won't be able to do the work well unless you take a step back and breathe every so often.