Different Forms of Self Care

'Self Care' Doesn’t Always Mean Bubble Baths And Scented Candles

You can achieve self care in sometimes unconventional ways.

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When you think of "self care," what is the first thing that pops into your head? For most, it's relaxing in a bath with some candles and good tunes. While this is a form of self care, there are multiple different ways you can achieve self care. Even little things we may not acknowledge can be considered self care.

Common ways for self care are cloud watching, star gazing, treating yourself to something nice, and turning off all technology for a while. If you have a strong faith in whatever religion you practice, praying is also a common form of self care. There are even smaller forms of self care, like getting 15 minutes of sun or doing 10 minutes of mindfulness. If you aren't sure of what mindfulness means, you can check out this page for more info.


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I asked my Odyssey group on ways that they achieve self care. My EIC mentioned that her form of self care is scheduling all of her responsibilities for the week and allowing herself one day (or at least one morning or night each week) to do absolutely nothing so she can recharge herself. Another thing she mentioned was positive affirmations. If you aren't aware, positive affirmations is the practice of positive thinking and self-empowerment. They're simple to do: pick some positive affirmations from this list or create your own and say them to yourself every day. You'd be surprised at the difference it can make for some people!

I also asked a few friends in college how they take care of themselves. One friend said that she goes running to take some stress of and tries to get enough sleep. Another friend said that she creates vision boards to help her creativity and motivation. One friend said she loves to practice yoga and deep breathing. My long time friend uses video games to self care and also will go to Waffle House often as a form of self care. My childhood friend said she loves to paint while listening to her favorite music to calm herself and take care of herself.

I also asked a friend how she achieves self care and gave me a detailed list. On days she can't find motivation to do much of anything, she'll go through her phone and delete old photos so she can at least feel like she's being productive. She also likes to watch documentaries because she can learn new information while also relaxing. She sometimes likes to go through old clothes and get rid of them and listens to new music she doesn't know the words to yet. The thing she does that I love the most is she will go on walks outdoors and pick out 5 things around her for each of her 5 senses. Lastly, she will look at herself in the mirror and pick 5 things she likes about herself, which she has said has greatly improved her self confidence.

Personally, my favorite form of self care is to create a small fortress of pillows in my bed, make some hot tea and watch The Office. Other than that, I like to achieve self care through reading or writing (probably expected considering I'm an English major). In the past, I've even gone and deleted negative people off of my social media accounts and trust me when I say that it was the best experience. Any stress I had prior is virtually gone and I'm ready to get back up and tackle the day. I also asked my boyfriend how he achieves self care. He likes to go on late night drives with the windows down and good music playing to destress and feel better after a hard day. My boyfriend's older sister said she loves to take a hot shower or bath and use her essential oils to achieve self care.

As you can see from all of the people I asked, there are so many ways you can do self care. Some may seem more obvious, but regardless of that, there are infinite ways. Hopefully some ideas here may help you, my kind reader, in your future endevors. What are some ways you've currently been doing for self care?

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ASU Students Push For A Healthier Dining Hall To Counter 'Freshman 15' Fears

The freshman 15 is an avoidable curse, but many students will continue to follow into its trap.

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Arizona State University students are pushing for change within the downtown Phoenix dining hall as they strive to avoid the infamous freshman 15.

The downtown Phoenix campus offers fewer dining options than the Tempe campus and has a less appetizing dining hall. The freshman 15 is a common scare among students living in the dorms, who are often freshman.

The freshman 15 is defined as a student who gains 15 pounds or more in their first year of college. Studies prove the average freshman does not exercise the right amount, is sleep deprived, has a poor diet, increases their stress level, alcohol consumption, and fatty food intake, which is most likely causing their weight gain.

Lauren Hernandez

Daniella Rudoy, a journalism major and fitness instructor at the SDFC, relived her freshman year as she provided tips for incoming freshman.

"There are a lot of workouts you can do in your dorm room as long as you have access to YouTube or a floor. You can go on a run, a walk, or do exercises that do not require equipment," Rudoy said in support of college fitness.

Rudoy said that mental health, fitness, and nutrition all correlate with one another.

"I follow the saying abs are made in the kitchen. So if you are working out day and night, but eating a giant pizza and chicken wings with a pack of beer when you come home you aren't doing yourself much good," Rudoy said.

Lauren Hernandez

The main cause for weight gain is increased alcohol consumption. 80 percent of college students drink and this includes binge-drinking, which is unhealthy for many reasons.

Students who do not drink are most likely gaining weight because of their exposure to an all-you-can-eat dining hall. The downtown Phoenix campus offers a salad bar as their only consistent healthy option for students, therefore students are left eating hamburgers, fries, and pizza.

"I haven't been to the dining hall this semester. Last semester, I went because I had no other options. I am a vegetarian and the dining hall is not accommodating to those with allergies or food restrictions. I find it very difficult to find vegetarian options," Lexi Varrato, a journalism major said.

Lauren Hernandez

Varrato explained that she believes the freshman 15 is "100% real" and that incoming freshmen should research their meal plans and ask their school how their dietary restrictions will be accommodated before purchasing a non-refundable meal plan.

Megan Tretter, a nursing major at Seattle University emphasized that not every dining hall is like ASU's and that the freshman 15 is "definitely not a problem" at her school.

"I always eat healthy at my dining hall. There are a lot of good and healthy options at Seattle University. I usually go to the smoothie line in the morning, have a salad for lunch, and make myself an acai bowl after work with avocado toast in our floor's kitchen," Tretter said in support of her school's strive for healthy options.

College students across the United States have healthier dining options than ASU, but many colleges still face the same problems that students here are facing.

Tara Shultz, a journalism major at ASU believes she has avoided the "very real" freshman 15 by living at home.

"I believe the freshman 15 targets dorm residence and first-year students who do not live at home as they do not have their parents as a guide and are forced to eat at a dining hall that only serves fatty foods," Shultz emphasized.

Lauren Hernandez

The downtown Phoenix campus offers students access to the SDFC, YMCA, and Taylor Place gym, where students can take group fitness classes, run on a track, play basketball, or swim. Alternative options for students are purchasing a membership at Orangetheory or EOS Fitness.

Most students agreed with journalism major Vanessa Gonzalez that they have little time to work out due to their workload, but many students like Varrato, Tretter, and Rudoy explained that they try to work out every day as it is a stress reliever and it enriches their mental health.

Steve Fiorentino, the owner of Powered Up Nutrition encourages college students to learn what they are putting in their bodies.

"I think it starts with nutrition. Students believe they can outwork a bad diet and I believe that is their number one mistake. My advice is to stop eating fast foods and start eating whole and healthy foods along with supplements," Fiorentino stated.

The freshman 15 is an avoidable curse, but many students will continue to follow into its trap. The campus dining hall is not always the reason to blame as students have the option to decrease their meal plans, become active, and make healthy choices!

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The Subconscious Line Between Empathizing And Sympathizing

Be there with the person instead of for the person.

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Whenever we see someone we love and care about going through a hard time, we always want to make sure that they know we are fully there for them. It's the line that we draw sometimes which we don't even see that establishes the way that we handle these situations. Although we may think it's apparent that those we love know that we care about them, yet it's difficult when we believe that just words can mend a broken heart or person. We tend to forget that actions speak louder than words and those acts of kindness have the ability to speak volumes to someone who's hurting.

We begin to sympathize and check in on people to see how they are doing to make sure they know that we are there for them and present. Even though that is absolutely amazing to text or call someone, we tend to lose touch of the impact we could make by a kind gesture that could make someone's day. Sometimes it's nerve-racking to do so because we don't fully know what someone's going through as we aren't directly in their shoes. If you think back to an experience in your life that you had difficulty, even though the other person supporting you didn't exactly walk the same path as you, there were able to help you get through it.

That's when empathizing comes into the picture which is an act that any human can perform by just listening and feeling out the situation. There's so need to evaluate or figure out what is wrong with another person, your job is to solely listen and show compassion and kindness towards that other person. The more that we do that, the less we have to worry about the difficulty to open up and show emotions and feelings. You'll find that even better friendships and relationships are grown through empathizing and allowing yourself to be there with the person instead of for the person.

Sometimes we subconsciously draw a line between what we think is right versus what could actually be right for the situation. We tend to draw this invisible line of sympathizing for a person rather than empathizing and not allowing for a space to be created for a conversation about something difficult. We tend to fear trusting others and to let them into our clouded windows due to it being too difficult or complicated to understand. The more we allow love into our lives, the easier it is to let that in and explore those relationships and experiences that could be absolutely beautiful.

It's easy to say these things but living them out is another story, it's not simple and it never will be. Yet it's worth a try and letting some emotions into your life and perspective may alter the way that you view your personal relationships and the things that may be keeping you from letting yourself fully feel. Just feeling something is worth a thousand words, but the second that you feel everything it's worth a million.

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