I don't know about ya'll but my school year is off to a crazy start. This year, my classes are harder, I'm more involved with student organizations, I have two on-campus jobs, and I still have deadlines to meet for The Odyssey. And I know people that have even more on their plate. I think it's really easy to get caught up in all that we have to do and forget to take a break every once in a while. When life gets hectic…

Use a planner. Last school year, I think I used my planner a total of four times. This year, I use it every single day. I have to with all the things on my schedule. Even if you feel like your schedule may not be busy but you still find yourself getting overwhelmed from time to time, it may be time to get a planner. It makes things a little easier when you have your entire schedule mapped out in front of you, whether it's for the day, week, or month.

Combine productivity with fun. I'm the type of person that doesn't like to waste time, especially if there's still some unchecked items on my to-do list. But I also know I can't work 24/7. When I find I need a mental break from studying but still want to be productive, I grab my camera and go for a walk. I find it relaxing to not think about all I have to do and wander aimlessly around campus taking random pictures while still building up my portfolio. For others, fun and productivity may be studying with friends at a sleepover or even decluttering your room. Whatever it may be, if you like to stay busy, just remember you can do so and still have fun.

Do something everyday that makes you happy. This one doesn't have to be productive. College life does not have to equal focusing on academics or future careers 100% of the time. Unless always doing homework and studying is fun to you, carve out some time at the end of your day to just chill. Whether it's hanging with friends before heading home or taking in a few episodes of your favorite show on Netflix, it's sure to take some stress off.

Keep your weekends free. I try to do the bulk of my work during the week so that I have little to none over the weekends. If you're stressed out from all you have to do, it doesn't help when you're busy Sunday through Saturday. So, try and finish everything by Friday (or before) and relax until Monday. This way, you'll have some free time to squeeze in some fun or relaxation.

Don't forget self-care. It all comes down to self-care. I know we hear about this a lot nowadays but it is really important. When we get caught up in our schedules, we can often forget to take time off for ourselves. Whether it's physical self-care (e.g., naps between classes, mini spa days, exercising) or mental (meditating, journaling, developing goals) it's worth taking time out of your day or week to better yourself.