We want to help you de-stress as you prepare for finals exams! Finals can be a stressful time, so we’re here to help support you. Join us for De-Stress Fest from Dec. 2-6, 2019 (click here for more event details). We also encourage you to try out some of our tips below to help you de-stress.
Fuel your brain! Eating healthy, regular meals and snacks will help you concentrate and focus, and can also prevent anxiety. Try to limit your coffee intake and make sure you’re also drinking enough water. For some healthy options, check out the Odyssey or Gateway on campus. You can check out the Gateway’s to-go menu here or pre-order your food online from the Odyssey.
Get active! It’s easy to put off exercise when you’re busy, but almost anyone can find 20-30 minutes in their day for this. There are many Youtube channels with quick workouts that you don’t even have to leave your home to do! If that’s not your thing – simply going for a walk or dancing around your living room will release endorphins, which will create feelings of happiness and reduce stress.
Stay connected to others! Draw on your support system to help you relax during this time. Go for coffee with a friend, or spend some time with your family. Interacting with others can boost your mood and decrease feelings of depression.
Catch some zzz’s! The average adult needs 7-9 hours of sleep each night. Getting proper sleep can help you perform better at school. If you’re having trouble sleeping– and nothing seems to be helping – try out the Sleep Cycle app. It monitors your sleep patterns so you can get a better understanding of what might be interfering with your sleep.
We know getting a good night’s sleep can be easier said than done when you’re stressed. You can also try the Relax & Sleep Well app – it features hypnotherapy and meditation recordings that will help you feel relaxed!
Stress and anxiety can have a physical effect on your breathing. By paying attention to this, you can learn to calm your body and clear your mind! Try out “deep breathing” to calm you the next time you’re stressed:
- Place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest
- Breathe in through your nose and let your belly fill with air
- As you breathe in, imagine that the air you are taking in is filled with a sense of peace and calmness
- As you breathe out, imagine that stress and tension is leaving your body with the air
- Repeat several times, and see how you feel!
More info on deep breathing can be found here.
Take Time for You
We know you’re probably very busy with your finals and other demands of life, but make sure you take some time to do the things you love! Make a list of your values and favourite things to do. Whether you enjoy taking baths, spending an evening out, or watching your favourite show, try to find breaks in your schedule to allow for this. Scheduling some time for yourself can help you stay focused and on-schedule with your studying, as you’ll be extra motivated knowing you have a break coming up.
Listen to Music
Music can distract you from your stress, and keep your mind from wandering while you’re trying to focus. Classical music is known to have a calming effect, and while it may not be your normal preference, give it a try while you’re studying.
If you’re having trouble sleeping, calming music or nature sounds can also be very soothing and help slow your mind after a stressful day.
Whatever music you choose, listening to music that you love will fill your brain with feel-good chemicals!
Did you know that laughter can strengthen your immune system, boost your mood, and protect you from stress? When you laugh, it can relieve physical tension and stress, leaving your muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes after. Laughter also triggers the release of endorphins, aka feel-good chemicals! So on your next study break, why not watch a funny show or listen to a comedy podcast?
Put Down the Technology
For a half an hour each day put away your phone and computer and enjoy the silence. Before bed, leave your phone and laptop far from your bed, so you’re not tempted to browse the internet while you should be resting. Technology breaks are so important!
Students, we wish you the best of luck on your exams and final projects! Remember to prioritize your mental health and wellbeing during this busy time, and try out some of these tips to help you de-stress.
You can pick up your FREE de-stress kit at the Saitsa Peer Support Centre (NJ105), Saitsa Resource Centre (MC107), Odyssey cafe (V211), Library (MC111) or Student Development & Counselling (AA205).