I know first hand how stressful college can be and I am only a freshman. Between juggling classes, sorority/fraternity events, social events, and other things that inevitably pile up, how are you supposed to remain calm? Well, stress can manifest into physical symptoms so it is important to take time for yourself and, yes, skip a class that is not of the utmost importance to catch up. Teachers, sorority sister, fraternity brothers, and your friends will understand if you need a break because they have most likely experienced exactly what you are feeling.
1. Set up morning and night routines
Morning and night routines can be helpful to reduce overall daily stress because even if your schedule is all over the place, like a lot of Rutgers students experience, you will still have some structure to stay on track.
For instance, in the mornings, my routine consists of me waking up, brushing my teeth, getting dressed, making my bed, and then checking my planner for the day's schedule. If I do not follow this routine, I end up forgetting to brush my teeth ( gross!), I am unable to do work in my room due to the messiness, and I end up messing up my schedule for the rest of the day.
During the evenings, my routine consists of me writing down new events in my planner, washing my face, tidying up my room, laying out my clothes for the following day, and brushing my teeth. I follow this routine because it makes my mornings more manageable and I will have my schedule set up for the next day, so my stress is lowered, and I have a plan every day!
2. GET ENOUGH SLEEP
I can not stress this enough, but GET ENOUGH SLEEP! Not sleeping causes more stress because your body is running on empty and needs to refuel. I know for me, if I do not get enough sleep, I get overwhelmed easily and tend to have breakdowns at the slightest inconveniences. Maybe that is just because I love my sleep, but, if I were you, I would work on having good sleeping habits because your stress levels will lower themselves while you are asleep.
Now, I know everyone is not blessed with good sleeping habits. So, if you are prone to bad sleeping habits try these tips: Don't be on any electronics one hour before you plan on going to sleep, read a book or article for class before bed, or maybe try meditation.
3. Pamper yourself
Now, I know this is pretty basic but taking a long shower and possibly doing a face mask can go a long way. (Yes, I am talking to guys too!) Sometimes we just need to make our bodies feel better before our mind can because we are either sweaty or just feel uncomfortable/sore from stressing so much. If you can take a bath, do that with Epsom salt because it will relieve the tension in your muscles caused by stress.
If you do not have access to a bathtub, like many college students, take a hot shower and try to put the muscles that are sore directly under the water. Also, if you can, get a shower fizzy. For me, shower fizzies are a great way to relieve stress because they are infused with essential oils that are down to help, such as tea tree and lavender.
Face masks are also a great way to relieve stress because they help clear your skin and they allow you to have time to focus on yourself. While wearing a face mask, I tend to color or clean because these two things help me destress. So, try and do activities that you know will help you, even if it is coloring. Maybe try watching a movie or even reading, which can both also involving work for classes.
4. Skip a class
Look, I am not saying to go overboard here and never go to your classes or to skip multiple in a row. However, if you have a bunch of class work, exams, volunteering, and other stuff piling up, take a break from a class that you know it will not hurt you in if you are not there. For me, I actually had to skip a class this week because I have had so many essays, exams, and sorority meetings this week. Plus, my roommate is moving out so I really needed some alone time to figure everything out.
When you do skip a class, make sure you are still getting stuff done and do not just sit around. For instance, if school work is overwhelming you, try and get some stuff done or catch up on your reading. If everything is getting to you, pamper yourself and clean your room, basically get other stuff done.