Why Self-Care In College Is So Important

Why Self-Care In College Is So Important

We often find it difficult to distance ourselves from all of the challenges of daily life, even when we realize how exhausted we truly feel.

In today's world, we are constantly surrounded by messages telling us that we need to look towards the future, especially by social media. Whether it's in regards to school, our personal lives or the state of the world in general, it is almost impossible to find a source that is actually telling the importance of caring for yourself first. Keeping up with the expectations that are put upon us is exhausting, both mentally and physically. Somehow, we still find it difficult to distance ourselves from all of the challenges of daily life, even when we realize how exhausted we truly feel. This is simply because we, as humans, are complacent creatures and are not good at differing from our habits, even if our habits have a negative impact on our mental health. I often have to remind myself to take some time to re-group in order to be able to focus and fully dedicate myself both in school and in my personal life.

One of the most important things that self-care does is allow us to disconnect. I find it very relaxing to turn my phone on silent and not be bombarded by social media posts about people's social events or political views. Reading someone's social media posts, especially those about controversial topics, can often breed a subconscious feeling of negativity and general unrest in a person. Taking some time to ignore this allows us to get back in touch with ourselves and our own personal values so when we go back out into the world, we have a more open mind and are more willing and able to find solutions to the problems that we face on a daily basis.

In addition, practicing self-care on a regular basis gives us time to get back in touch with our interests and the things that we enjoy. Whatever your hobby is, taking some time to spend on it will definitely help you to relax. Also, remember that it is not important what other people think about the activities that you enjoy. Everyone has something that helps them to relieve their stress, and you should not feel obligated to justify your interests to anyone.

One of the greatest joys in my life is taking some time with myself after a long, stressful day, and I believe that this would improve many others' lives as well. The world around us is constantly changing, which may make it seem impossible to live completely in the present, but simply trying to do so prevents us from getting overwhelemed by our ever-changing lifestyles.

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The Difference Between Equality And Equity

Equality doesn't really mean "equal"

Though most don't realize it, there is a stark contrast between what equality means, and what equity means. Treating everyone exactly the same isn't actually fair all the times. What equal treatment does, in reality, is erase the differences we come it and promote privilege.

Fairness and success really do mean different things when everyone is different. Equity and equality are two strategies we can use in an effort to produce fairness. While Equity is giving everyone what they need to be successful. Equality is treating people the same. Equality aims to promote fairness, but it can only work if everyone starts from the same place and needs the same help. But that's never the case in real life situations. Equity appears unfair, but it actually is just "evening the playing field."

Since everyone is different and we embrace these differences as unique, we must also redefine our basic expectations for fairness and success as dependent upon those individual differences. In the real world, this means that some people will need a language translator when speaking to a government agency and others will not. And it wouldn’t be fair to just provide Spanish translators just because it is the language most people speak. A Spanish translator would give a French speaker the same access to opportunities.

That would be a privilege.

Privilege is when we make decisions that benefit enough people, but not all people. Privilege is allowed to continue when we wrap it up with actions of equality because it ends up justifying privilege

On the outside, everything appears fair, because how can we argue against equal treatment? We need to recognize our differences as unique, rather than reach for one definition of “success.” By utilizing just one definition of success, we erase our differences.

Often times, decisions are made to benefit the majority of people without paying attention to individual needs. Privilege is a tricky thing. I don't know about you, but I’m not aware of my privilege on a daily basis, no one is. I don’t feel a bit of my privilege when I sit in an hour-long lecture or have 3 meals a day even though a lot of people don't have those same privileges as me. Usually, I'm just unaware of my own privilege, because the system generally works in my favor.

Now the next question is can we change the whole system? Rarely. What we can do, however, is be advocates for equitable practices in order to promote fairness. We can't keep relying on practices of equality just because they seem to be fair, because, in reality, they're not. Our actions actually do have to be just and equitable.

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A School Shouldn't Be A Shooting Ground

I want to feel safe with my brother and sister entering school doors.

Imagine sitting in your classroom, going through your day to day routine of listening to the teachers go on and on about a subject. You can't stop looking at the clock, hoping for the school day to end.

You suddenly hear a fire alarm and even though it's the second one of the day, you just suppose it's nothing too out of the ordinary.

So you walk out of that classroom following other students and then you hear it.

You feel it.

You hear ear-deafening screams. You hear gunshots.

You feel people pushing towards you, trying to run away.

You see blood. You see a body, lying on the floor.

Your throat tightens up, you can't breathe. There is no way that there is a shooter here.

Someone who is killing all of these people you know and some that you have grown up with. You run as fast as you can away from the shots that resonate against the walls.

Pushing yourself against other students to find a classroom, where you find a place to hide.

Tears are streaming down your face. This can't be real.

You are confined in a closet along with a girl you knew from chemistry class. Both of you are breathing heavily, unable to comprehend what is going on.

All you hear is screaming, bullets hitting people, bullets hitting the ground.

This was supposed to be a place where we would be the safest. A place built on the foundations of learning and safety.

A school shouldn't be a shooting ground.

This was the reality for the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. They lost friends, teachers, fellow students, and their security.

No longer would they ever feel safe and secure at a school or even a public place. This horrific incident will follow them throughout their life. It will scar them in ways we wouldn't understand.

It's during this absolutely horrendous time that we need to make a change.

The victims of this massacre have already spoken out and are actively making changes. We can take our part by supporting them, whether it's through social media or joining "The March Of Our Lives" on March 24th or the "National School Walkout" on March 14th.

It's time for there to be changes made to our system whether it's making mandatory background checks or requiring mental health records.

We need some form of gun control.

Yes, I believe that people have the right to bear arms and protect themselves in situations. But I do not believe that a nineteen-year-old should be able to buy an AR-15 rifle along with nine other weapons.

School shootings are becoming so prevalent. This was one of the deadliest mass shootings in the United States.

We are only two months into the new year and there have been a total of 30 mass shootings since.

How far are we willing to allow this to go on for?

There is obviously a problem. We have the power to solve it or at least make things better than they are right now.

Go to your local legislator, write a letter to the mayor, or even the president. You may not think that it can make a change, but every single action counts.

Cover Image Credit: USA Today

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