When you are in college, being stressed out is a part of the experience. However, a lot of people do not know how to express themselves when they are going through a rough patch. Check out this list of things you can do if you struggle with opening up! It is hard at first to do, but the more you practice being comfortable with your emotions, the better off you will!

1. Music

I think music is one of the most powerful aspects of our society. It has the ability to move you to feel so many different things while also helping you realize that you are not alone in your feelings. Allowing yourself to express your emotions is incredibly healing and listening to music can be one way to let yourself embrace what you are going through in a more personal and private way.

2. Write it out

I may be biased, but I think writing out how you are feeling is very liberating. Getting your ideas and feelings out of your head and onto to a piece of tangible paper or on your laptop allows you to have a sense of release. This release not only allows you to feel better about what you are feeling but also lets you gain a new perspective on the matter. Even if your writing is only ever seen by you, that is just as effective!

3. Talk to someone

This may seem rather intuitive but there are a lot of people who reside within themselves when it comes to expressing themselves. They feel like they cannot open up about how they are really feeling and to be honest, the act itself is rather difficult. I think finding one or maybe two people who you can develop a trusting relationship with is key to eventually having the ability to confide in others.

4. Figure out the source

I find that a lot of people who struggle to express how they feel all have a certain event or reason in their life, specifically within their childhood, that makes them believe that keeping their emotions within themselves is the better option. If you are one of these people, I think that exploring why you think this way and why you choose not to express all your emotions is key to eventually being able to allow yourself to feel.

Not being able to express yourself and shoving away how you truly feel in certain situations is unhealthy if you let these types of feelings fester for many years. Hopefully, if you are able to do a little self-reflecting and find the source of why you hold things in, you will be able to address that issue head-on and move on in your life feeling freer.

5. Do something that you love

Everyone has hobbies or things that they like to do when they get home from work or school. When it comes to expressing yourself, sometimes the best thing to do is to be in an environment that you are comfortable in. Once you are comfortable and doing something that you really enjoy, you will hopefully be more at ease when it comes to talking about how you really feel.

For me, dancing always makes me feel better.

For you, it may be playing a sport, painting, writing a song, playing video games, etc. The key to using your hobbies as a way to express yourself is relying on the activity simply make yourself comfortable; not to distract you from how you are actually feeling. The goal is to use that comfort to open yourself up!