You’re probably experiencing it right now
By Michele Provenzano, Staff Writer
You know those weeks when everything is happening all at once? During the past few, you’ve been coasting just fine, but then, bam! Everything. Is. Due. You’ve got three deadlines for assignments on Friday, after that, a midterm on Monday—but you work all weekend, so how are you going to make time to study? You’d like to avoid pulling all-nighters, so you can avoid losing your sanity!
It’s the halfway point of the semester, folks. If you haven’t had a week like this so far, you likely will soon. I’m in the midst of a busy week, so if you’re struggling—I feel you. This article is essentially a pep talk I’m giving myself.
Taking care of yourself is crucial when things get hectic. Lots of commonly suggested self-care activities seem daunting or time-consuming, so here are some of the quickest tasks that reap the biggest benefits for you as you crawl your way through a tough week.
Move your body
Getting out of your head and into your body is one of the best ways to relieve stress. Don’t worry—you don’t have to go out for a long run or spend hours commuting to the gym and back. Simply pick your favourite way to move and spend a few minutes doing it. You could dance around your bedroom to an upbeat song, stretch for five minutes, or go for a quick walk. Focusing on upcoming deadlines can concentrate your attention too much on the overwhelming nature of the future; movement is a great way to stay grounded in the present.
Take a laugh break
Schedule laughter into your day. Whether it’s friend who gets you giggling, or simply watching a five-minute clip of your favourite stand-up comedian on YouTube, laughter is the ultimate stress reliever.
Remember to eat
It sounds silly to tell you to eat, but it’s easy to get so swept up in working on something that you either forget to eat or you feel like you don’t have time. Fuel is essential for that brain, and eating must be prioritized if you want to get stuff done. If you don’t have time to prepare a meal, grab some quick nutritious snacks like a granola bar or fruit.
Go for a walk
There are so many benefits walks have: Energizing your body with movement, welcoming fresh air into your lungs, connecting with the world around you, and clearing your head. Walks are my number one self-care tool, and they also help generate my best ideas. I try to regularly schedule short walks for myself—especially when I’m working on creative assignments. Something so simple and profoundly helpful can be easily integrated into the busiest of schedules.
Take a perspective hour
It’s hard to keep a healthy perspective on things when assignments pile up. When the fear of deadlines creeps up, it’s easy to jump to terrible conclusions and feel like the world is crashing down. But it’s not. You may not feel like you have an hour to waste, but spending that time doing something that fills you with purpose will show you that no assignment is the end of the world. Even if you fail an assignment, a midterm—or even a class—you’ll get through it. Do what makes you cheerful and remember what’s truly important.
Even though an overwhelming week seems impossible to schedule self-care into, it’s the most important and beneficial time to practice these activities. No class is worth compromising your mental health. Get some work done—and