The third week of the semester has just ended, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who is already feeling overwhelmed. Classes are in full swing, and projects and exams are coming up much too quickly for my taste. I know I am not the only one experiencing stress with this influx of responsibilities. Everyone needs to know that stress is not uncommon in life, but there is no reason to let it affect your friendships, sleep, and life altogether.
1. Put sleep above social events.
Yes, it is important to have self-care, as well as taking time to make and maintain friendships, but not at the cost of sleep. You need to run on more than 5 hours of sleep on a daily basis.
2. Have a rant buddy.
You should have someone you are comfortable to share your opinion with. This could be a counselor, a best friend, or a significant other. Either way, you should feel free to share your thoughts with someone. Holding every emotion inside does not help anyone, especially not yourself.
I know this might seem counterproductive, but crying helps. Letting yourself be sad is okay, and you should feel free to let yourself show emotion. Snot bubbles are not the most attractive accessory, but no one looks pretty when crying.
4. Work out.
I know I feel much less stressed after I complete a few miles on the treadmill. Find something that works for you. This could be boxing, yoga, weight lifting, or team sports. Do what makes you happy. Bonus points if you listen to angsty music while you do it!
5. Let yourself worry–but only in controlled increments.
This one does not work well for me, as I am not great at limiting my stress. But I am trying to improve, and it might serve you well! Tell yourself you are going to worry for your eight page paper for 10 minutes, and then actually start working on it. I find that if I spend time working on my actual homework, I stress less.
I know that these may not be helpful for you, but I certainly hope they are. We have until April to stess, let's have healthier coping mechanisms.