Stress Less

Being home for fall break, I am pretty much stress-free. It feels so good to be home. I knew I missed home but I really didn’t know how much I missed it until I got here. It’s hard to believe that just last week I was stressing about midterms, but now I’m taking a nice break.  However, not everyone’s life is on pause for a week. In fact, most of the people I’ve gotten the chance to talk to while I’ve been home have been feeling a lot stress. Whether it’s school, work, relationships, applying for colleges, or just things in life that are beyond anyone’s control, there is a lot going on. I’ve been thinking about the ways that I personally deal with stress, and here are a few:

  1. Exercise I realize that a lot of stress comes from lack of time, so taking an hour to go run might not actually be helpful in reducing stress (though if you have time to do a full workout, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything that will make you feel better, even if you aren’t an athlete). However, doing a few pushups or crunches every time you get a flashcard wrong not only helps you study, it busts some stress. Plus, it makes you super swoll, depending on how well you know your flashcards. A few minutes of yoga is good too. 
  2. Pamper Yourself (lightly) Again, don’t take a lot of time, but do take a hot shower, do your nails, drink some tea, eat a few chocolate chips, change out of your pajamas. You will feel better. 
  3. Dance PARTAY I hope you have a good relationship with your roommate for this one, because it isn’t going to work unless you make a complete fool of yourself. You need LOUD music, and a wet noodle of a body. 
  4. Engage in Snail Mail This one might not seem logical, but it always works. If you take the time to write a letter to someone, especially someone you haven’t talked to in a while (your Grandma) and ask how their life is, and tell them about yours you will:
  • get the chance to rebalance your perspective and realize that your problem isn’t going to end the world (probably); 
  • focus on the positive; 
  • make you feel more connected to the people in your life, and I’m sure that there are a billion studies that say that relationships make you happier and therefore less stressed, I just don’t know of any off the top of my head; 
  • feel good because nobody gets letters anymore, so you probably made your Grandma’s day. Maybe she’ll bake you cookies, which leads me to:
  • have something to look forward to (getting a letter back). 

              It's worth the 44 cents.

       5. Be Goofy Even if nothing is funny and you have to force yourself to laugh, do it. 

       6. GET. TO. WORK!! The only real way to be less stressed is have less to be stressed about.

--Claire Cushing

Claire is a freshman pre-engineering major from Sandy, Oregon.