Okay so we all know how crazy college can get and just how overwhelming the stress can be. I mean seriously, one minute you’re all caught up and the next you’ve blinked and have a tsunami of responsibility crashing in on you. With midterms coming up, I wanted to whip out a post highlighting the importance of self care and some of the ways I accomplish that in a ‘home away from home’ environment!
So for a hot second, let’s forget about all of the assignments burning a hole in our backpacks, the papers waiting to be written, and the exams that need to be studied for (hard, I know) and focus on ourselves!
1. Be your own personal spa
Make it a priority to set aside a night just for you. This way, you can leave the stress of the day or week behind for a few hours and just do things that make you feel good.
For me, this normally starts with a long shower that just makes me feel clean. I’m talking shaved (and exfoliated) legs and a super moisturizing hair mask for sure. Then after getting in my most favorite pj’s I craw into bed with my favorite snack and decompress with a face mask while catching up on some of the shows I might have missed throughout the week. This also involves an early bedtime for me, which is one of the things I miss most while being at college. In a weird way it gives me a sense of normalcy, and I think this is important to recreate on a night you’re focusing on yourself.
Obviously this isn’t always the most practical option since it can really take up your entire night depending on how far you take it, but I find this to be my favorite way to distract from the reality of what is waiting for me. Plus if you know you are setting time aside for this, you won’t feel guilty.
2. Get a good workout in!
I never in a million years thought I would be going to the gym regularly, but here I am today doing just that, and I’ve never felt better.
Although I’ve never been super involved in sports, I have danced my entire life keeping me relatively active. Something happened within the past year or so and even though I was still dancing, I went through a lifestyle change for the worse. It wasn’t until I reality checked my self in the second semester of my Junior year and said I was going to start trying to make a change.
Ever since I’ve been mustering up the courage to hit the gym at least 3-4 times a week. Even though I don’t always have the most productive workout, I always leave feeling good. Believe everyone when they say no one regrets doing the workout. It’s so good for your body and mental health and it’s even good for your social life too if you make time to go with a friend!
And just to be clear it doesn’t have to be the gym that you go to! If you like to run, do yoga, or take a Zumba class.. do it! Finding something you love to do is key and even more so, sticking to it through the ups and the downs (:
P.S. Don’t forget to drink a TON of water too! It’s good for both your body as a whole, but specifically your skin (something I struggle with a lot, especially at school)!
3. Have a Kanye West dance party in your room
Heck have it in the middle of campus if that’s what you’re into. Also of course it doesn’t need to be Kanye, but pick a few power songs that help you get through the day and when you’re really feeling those lows, jump around on your bed and just let loose.
For me, this is like a mini reset button. I get to goof around long enough to feel better but not too long to feel badly about all the time I just ‘wasted’. I feel more focused, significantly less stressed, and ready to cross off more of the items on my ‘To Do’ list for the day!
4. Find a balance between alone time and S.O. Time
For us introverts out there, it’s okay to say NO. Not just introverts, but everyone, needs some alone time. It’s good to decompress and reflect on everything that’s happening. It’s true the world doesn’t stop turning and deadlines are never going to go away, but it’s so important to take time to yourself amidst all of this chaos and be still.
Although a lot of people (myself included) suffer from FOMO with their friends, family, or significant other as well as the possibility of letting those down they care about, it is more important to understand (and stick to) your boundaries. Ask yourself if going out is going to be beneficial in the long term for your mental, emotion, and physical wellbeing and if the answer is yes, then go for it, but never feel guilty for putting yourself first. It has to be done.
This is the second semester I had to skip out on my college’s dance club, which literally KILLS me but I know that it would kill me more to spread myself even thinner than I already am. Been there, done that, and from experience now know it’s most definitely NOT worth it.
5. Always wash your face!
I think I’m including this here more for me than for all y’all. I’m guilty of skipping this step in my every day routine, ESPECIALLY if I’m running late it’s the first thing to go. But then in approximately three days when I’m experiencing the WORST breakout, I’m kicking myself majorly for it.
I guess the point is, don’t skip the small stuff. It might seem like it’s not such a big deal but long term it really has an effect on how you view yourself. I know that when I struggle with acne or something else related to physical appearance, I don’t even feel like myself and that’s the first sign that something in my self care routine has to change. When I feel my best, I can actually be my best. Kind of self explanatory, I know, but definitely is a little PSA that I need to give myself quite a few times as the semester progresses and the intensity only increases.
Don’t forget to treat yo’ self!!!
You didn’t do so hot on that exam? Treat yourself. You did great on that paper? Treat yourself. You made it through another week? Treat yourself. You get the hint, right?
Not every treat yo’ self moment has to be some grand ordeal, it can be as simple as ordering your favorite milkshake or watching your favorite Youtuber’s new series (shout out to Shane). Whatever it might be, make sure you aren’t being too hard on yourself because life goes on. What might feel like the end of the world today will be nothing tomorrow and there isn’t any reason to hang on to those types of feelings.
Focus on being happy and the rest will come (:
What are some of the things you guys to do incorporate self care in your daily routine? Are you thinking more or less about these things as midterms approach and the semester really starts to go in? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below! And..
Until next time,