5 Stress management tips for college students

College is a balancing act. With exams, projects, papers, work, job searches, research, and a social life on top of all of that, sometimes the stress begins to eat away at you. How can you manage to do all of this and still stay sane?

Here are 5 tips to managing your stress and keeping everything in balance.

1. Eat healthy snacks

You’re stressed, and usually the first thing to go is a healthy diet. When you’re stretched for time, or too tired to cook, a bag of chips starts to look pretty appetizing. However, ask yourself, “do I ever feel physically good after eating a whole bag of greasy chips?” Probably not. Do yourself a favor: skip the chips and reach for some fruit or a salad. Physically, you will feel more in balance – and will begin to feel balanced mentally as well.

2. Take a nap

As a college student, sleep is probably one of the toughest aspects of your life to regulate. How can you expect to get a decent amount of sleep during the week when homework, evening exams, internships, maybe a job and club meetings (not to mention a social life) all keep you up late? The reality is, however, sleep is a great stress reliever. Even when you take a short catnap, your brain can work through problems and reorganize. Think of naps as a reset button for your brain!

3. Take a walk

Exercise, even in the form of a short walk, can relieve the stress you’re feeling. Take a break from work (even if you feel like you don’t have time to do so) and take a five-minute walk outside. Your brain will thank you for the mental break; your body will thank you for the physical activity.

4. Plan it out

Maybe it’s just me, but I know I feel a lot better if I can see a physical list of what I need to get done. If I take the mental chaos of what I have to do and write it down, my head is clear and I can focus on one task at a time. Plus, it feels REALLY good to cross something off your list when you’ve finished. Old-school or not, to reduce stress start a to-do list!

5. Change your scenery

Working in your messy bedroom or apartment? Maybe you’re stuck inside and it’s beautiful out. A change of scenery can help – and get you motivated to get your work done. Take your work to a coffee shop, outside somewhere on campus, or to the library. You’ll focus better outside of your normal workplace, get out of the rut you’re in – and greatly reduce your stress.

These tips should help keep your college stress from getting out of control. Remember… breathe deep, stay organized and keep a positive attitude. It won’t be this crazy forever… you can do it!

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