Life in 2017, especially recently with all of the politics in the U.S., can be incredibly stressful. School doesn’t exactly help either, with a higher workload for students than ever before. Often students are stressed about projects, essays, homework, and tests on a daily basis, and don’t have enough time to de-stress and still get the work done on time. I have this problem frequently, so here are some ways that I find helpful when trying to de-stress and still get everything done.
- Take a Power Nap- Instead of a full blown hour-long nap, a power nap is a nap that lasts from 10 minutes to a half hour, but is still refreshing. Naps are important if you want to go to bed but don’t have time to, or feel like you can’t get any work done. Sleep can be incredibly helpful for de-stressing, and a power nap saves time by only being 20 minutes long.
- Have a Short Break- Do something that makes you happy or relaxes you like reading a chapter of an old favorite book (for example Harry Potter by JK Rowling) or watching a short YouTube video that is funny or relaxing like this. Taking a break can help take your mind off the stress for a bit and you can get back to work more efficiently.
- Study in the Bath- Taking a bath is a classic way to de-stress and unwind, but it takes time and you can’t study with your papers. Something I do is record myself saying my notes out loud with my phone before getting in the bath. Once in the bath (with a bath bomb or some candles), I play the recording until I can semi-recite it from memory; that way, I can study for a test the next day, essentially doubling the amount of relaxation as I don’t need to worry about studying afterwards. This works well for pretty much everything except certain kinds of math.
- Listen to Music- This may seem obvious, but music can really help. Create a playlist specifically for working while you’re stressed; the music should make you feel calmer, or at least help you focus. Personally, I like to play the music at a lower volume than normal so it doesn’t distract me, and/or put it in another room. Some music that I find calming is a lot of The 1975’s music, especially “Nana” and “Paris” from the album “I like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware.”
- Drink Some Tea- Tea is a staple for when I’m feeling stressed. Peppermint is one of my favorites, but chamomile is a popular choice for many, many people while stressed. Just make tea and sip it while you work or even take a quick break to drink the tea and go back to working feeling a bit less overworked.
- Get More Sleep- In case you’re working late at night or plan to, be sure to do everything that you normally do before going to sleep such as washing your face, showering, brushing your teeth, etc. before it gets too late so that once you’re done working you can go straight to bed and get the maximum amount of sleep.