College Diaries: Tips for a Stress-Free Semester

March 3, 2015


College can be extremely stressful. Between intense classes and balancing extracurriculars with homework and a social life, it can be easy for things to get out of perspective.  While my best tip for a stress-free semester is certainly "remember to breathe," a few other tricks have certainly helped me limit stress and enjoy college.

Doodle!  Sometimes when I need a break between finishing classes and starting my homework, I whip out my favorite pens and a notebook and doodle away. As an added bonus, studies show doodling increases focus and stimulates the brain-- leaving you refreshed and focused when it comes time to get back to school work!
Slip on a comfy pair of slippers. As soon as I get back to my dorm, I love taking off my shoes and getting into my Laura Ashley slippers. (I found them for $10 at TJ Maxx!) Not only do slippers feel amazing on your feet, but they are the only thing other than rugs that make linoleum floors homey!
Lather on some lotion. This year I discovered Aveeno Stress-Relief Moisturizing Lotion. It smells absolutely amazing and the scent makes you feel instantly relaxed after a long day. Not to mention it moisturizes dry skin which can come about as a result of stress.
Invest in Spotify and good headphones. I was always a Pandora person until college, when I discovered Spotify. For $5 a month (with a student discount), you can listen to unlimited music and songs on demand with no advertisements. From workout playlists to feel-good jams, the possibilities are endless. The only pitfall is definitely the lack of Taylor Swift songs.  Good headphones make the experience even better. I recommend the ever-popular Beats or a solid pair of over-the-ear Bose headphones.
Eat brain food. Trail mix is 90% of my diet. I love to make my own by buying a huge container of mixed nuts, bittersweet chocolate and Craisins. Trail mix has tons of protein and healthy fats that stimulate your brain and give you plenty of energy to maximize productivity and minimize procrastination-induced stress.
Keep an organized agenda. I love my Lilly Pulitzer agenda, but as long as you have a quality agenda (designer or otherwise), you can stay organized and on top of assignments. Nothing gives me more pleasure than crossing off finished projects and assignments in my planner. Staying organized keeps all of your "to-do's" in sight so you don't get overwhelmed.
Treat Yo' Self. I am a self-confessed Starbucks addict but have been very good lately about saving Starbucks drinks for more special occasions like after a big test or when I'm done with classes for the week. This makes tests much more manageable since I give myself something to look forward to! My current fave is the new Tiramisu latte-- its delish! If you don't have a Starbucks on campus, check out my favorite K-Cups for my Keurig !
Meditate. This is going to sound a little strange and its not for everyone, but when I'm stressed beyond the point of no return, I find that sometimes the only way to relax is to close my eyes, clear my mind and take deep breaths. Follow this with a trip to Starbucks and you're golden.
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