If you’re a high school junior or senior, know this rule now: college is stressful. From living on your own for the first time to harder classes and demands, your nerves and brain will be tested like never before.
Don’t let the pressures of college break you down, check out these easy and cheap college stress relief strategies before your first day.
Find A Consistent Study Space
Create a place where you can comfortably focus when studying or working on assignments.
If you like studying at home, then set aside a set space (perhaps your bedroom or a side room) that you can work in that’s quiet and comfortable to avoid distraction.
If you live with roommates and need alone time, then look for a local coffee shop or library that has open seating. That way, you can be left alone and know that when you’re there, it’s time to relax and focus.
Find New Hobbies
Break up your study schedule with fun activities.
You’re going to be studying a lot, on top of constantly dealing with papers and tests. Find some simple hobbies you can pursue that let your mind rest and recharge.
Common ones include:
- Learning an Instrument
- Joining an On-Campus Club or Sport
Whatever you do, make sure again that it doesn’t cause stress, and it lets your mind let go of the everyday class pressures you’ll face. That’s the key to success.
Build A Support Network
Have a group of people that can share your worries with.
You don’t have to burden all that stress by yourself. Surround yourself with positive people always willing to listen and help motivate you. These people could be:
- Close Friends
- Fellow Classmates
The point is to vent your fears, struggles, and frustrations with those who will help you find solutions, not dwell on the problems. Furthermore, having people to bounce your thoughts and ideas off of will help eliminate self-doubt you may develop too.
Create A Realistic Schedule
Don’t rely on pulling all-nighters to get college work done.
Time management is critical in college. You have to constantly juggle:
- Attending Classes
- Researching Papers
- Studying for Exams
- Working (if maintaining a part or full-time job)
- Time For Relationships (significant other/family/friends)
Remember that during these years, college takes precedence, so organize your schedule around it.
Leave plenty of time during the week for regular study sessions and writing time, in addition to class attendance. Everything else will fall in line, and you won’t be forced to squeeze in class work at the expense of sleep and health.
Get Plenty of Sleep
Never underestimate the power of regular sleep.
Most college students find it hard to get enough sleep. There’s class, home life, late-night fun, doing research for papers and tests, etc. Feeling like you can survive on a handful of sleep hours is natural but horrible long-term.
You should work to get as close to a full 8 hours of sleep as possible. Your body and brain can maintain focus, and you reduce the risk of incurring injury and sickness.
Maintain A Balanced Diet
Don’t give in to the allure of constant pizza, Ramen, and alcohol.
Eating well in college is almost an oxymoron, but it’s something you should do regardless. Eating nothing but processed foods full of excess sugars and salt will affect your health and metabolism, leading to major health problems later on.
Plus, they don’t provide your body with the nutrients your brain needs to stay sharp and better process stress. You should have a diet that contains plenty of:
- Whole Grains
Feel free to have a cheat meal once a week to relax or enjoy a night out. But keep it as a cheat, not a standard to live by.
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