College provides a myriad of opportunities for students to explore their interests, whether it be through clubs, internships, classes, or work opportunities. And while these experiences are important for a diverse and rounded out academic career, taking on everything at once puts students in danger of burnout. Even the most driven, ambitious students need to take care of themselves, so here are a few self-care tips for the otherwise swamped student:
Listen to Music
Whether it be classical or punk, creating a playlist geared towards pleasure and relaxation is a great way to de-stress even while commuting to your internship or class. It’s especially helpful if you reserve the playlist for these moments of peace among chaos.
Although it may be difficult to find moments to read in the midst of everything else, it’s important to take the time for books and articles other than the ones in your textbooks. This is another great commute activity.
If it’s something you can afford, or something your university offers, then therapy is an ideal self-care opportunity. Weekly, or even bi weekly, therapy forces you to allot time to reflect and step back from the chaos of your regular schedule, with the added benefit of having a third party perspective.
Find a Hobby
Whether it be writing, or baking, or weaving, creative outlets are essential to keep oneself balanced and sane. Sarah Goodwin, a second year at American University, says: “Even if it’s something as silly as sorting my favorite characters into Hogwarts Houses, engaging in something that’s at all creative helps more than doing something passive like watching Netflix or listening to a podcast.” Having a final product feels good, and it takes your mind of your plate if only for a little while.
Sometimes avoiding burnout means re-evaluating your schedule and nixing what doesn’t work. If it doesn’t make you happy or if it’s not providing you with some other benefit, then it’s okay to cut back on an activity. Managing your time means choosing what’s most important: and sometimes that means cutting back.
Ultimately, different individuals will prefer different methods for self-care. But regardless of one’s preferences, self-care is essential to avoiding burnout and remaining active in a busy schedule.