Everybody deals with stress. Whether it be just the result of school, work, or that cutie from class, even a little bit of stress can cause some serious damage on your mental and physical health. We know—life is busy and we don’t always have the time or money to attend a yoga/meditation class every single day, but there are endless easy, simple and self-healing hobbies you can do even with your jam-packed schedule. If you find yourself exhausted from the whirlwind of life, check out the tips below.
1. Create a “feel good” playlist
It may not seem like much, but good music can have a tremendous effect on your mood and mental health. With so many different types of music streaming applications available, there’s a pre-made playlist for all your confidence-boosting needs. This easy shift is perfect for those of you that don’t have a lot of time to spare. Since listening to music can be done while doing homework, getting ready, eating and showering, it can be easily integrated into your everyday routine.
Stephanie Kao, a junior at Texas A&M University, says she can’t go a day without listening to music. “I always like to start my day off with really up-beat music that will get me energized in the morning,” she says. “I usually use my Spotify or Apple Music to browse playlists that are titled ‘confidence boost’ or ‘Good Vibes.’”
We couldn’t agree more. There’s no better stress-reliever than jamming to the newest hits or even old throwbacks. Everyone can use a dance party occasionally… even if it’s by yourself.
2. Look up fun recipes & make them
If you’re anything like us, your face lightens up with even the slightest mention of food. Everyone needs it; everyone loves it. What more could you ask for? One big way to better your mental and physical health is to recreate healthy meals that you may find online. Not only does this allow for a nice rest, but it also ensures that your body stays healthy as well. After all, it’s not really a “break” if you’re doing something productive, right?
Justine Tu, a senior at the University of Houston, states that this has helped her feel more productive and energized. “I used to always just eat out because it seemed a lot quicker,” she admits. “But once I started cooking my own meals, I didn’t realize how fun it could actually be. I ended up cooking meals with my roommates most of the time and it was the perfect stress-reliever. Also, making balanced meals helped me feel like I was a lot healthier because otherwise I would feel groggy and tired all day.” Making balanced meals is the perfect way to not only spend quality time with friends and family, but to also have a happier stomach!
3. Do a face mask before you go to bed
Can’t afford an actual spa day? We bet you didn’t know that you could have your very own every single night. Nothing says self-healing like a good old-fashioned face mask. After a long hard day of working and learning, lying in bed with a face mask is the perfect way to end the night. The best part? It doesn’t take up too much of your day. We all know that you’re going to spend the last hour or two on your phone scrolling through social media anyway, so why not look goofy and feel great doing it?
Ameeti Kalra, a junior at the Texas A&M University, says she ends every night with her favorite face mask. “I usually like to put a face mask on right before I shower,” she says. “Since I usually procrastinate my shower by scrolling on my phone anyway, I like to put on a mask to make my skin feel smooth and clean. It’s the best way to end the day because it’s so easy and so relaxing. I feel like many people don’t realize the wonders it can do for your skin!” Now that’s a dedicated advocate. Don’t worry, you and your roommates are the only ones that will ever see you with a bright blue mask on!
4. Go for a quick jog
We know—cliché, right? I think we’ve all seen the endless chick flicks of successful and productive young women and men starting their day off with an early morning jog. However, there’s probably a reason why they do it. Jogging or even walking around for a couple of minutes is a great way to relieve stress. Not only do you get to let out all your vent up emotions, but it also gives you time to relax. With all the time we spend in the same chair staring at the same computer screen, our minds will probably start to drive themselves insane. It’s also good for your physical health to get a little bit of exercise in every day. We know, exercise is hard, but you don’t have to be a gym expert to get your healthy dose of it. Going for a quick run or jog would only take up a maximum of 30 minutes and you’ll be sure to feel a world of a difference. Not to mention, it will definitely get your step count up on your activity tracker!
Isabelle Huynh, a junior at the Texas State University, states that this worked perfectly for her. “I am by no means a runner,” she says. “I hated running but I recently got into it because I found that sitting for long periods of time would actually exhaust me more. Even though I just do a light jog, getting that fresh air definitely gets me more energized.” So, tune into your favorite songs and get outside!
5. Cheer yourself on
One of the most important ways to improve self-health is to have the right mindset. Especially when in a college setting, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s important. Take a moment to relax and remind yourself of all the good things that are in your life. By taking a moment to reflect on yourself and your goals, you’ll be able to bring your own mood up. At the end of the day, what you think of yourself is what matters the most. Don’t forget that cheering yourself on sometimes could be even more effective than the loudest set of cheerleaders.
Hoan Le, a senior at the University of Texas at Dallas, couldn’t agree more. “It’s always important to have a positive outlook,” she says. “A lot of times I feel like we are our own worst critics and that could really bring us down. It’s always good to take a moment to remind yourself that you’re doing great.” You’re doing amazing, sweetie!
Related Link: 3 Numbers That Don’t Define You or Your Health
Taking care of your health may be the last thing on your mind with your busy schedule, but sometimes you can make a huge difference without adding to your calendar at all. There are plenty of ways that you can improve your self-health without even noticing it. Most of the time, they can actually end up being super fun. We know—life can be exhausting, but don’t forget to always make sure that you’re taking care of yourself. We’re all cheering for you!
Dajin Kim is a Junior Advertising major at the University of Texas at Austin who was born and raised in Plano, Texas. In addition to being a feature writer for HerCampus, she enjoys chick flicks, meeting new people, long naps, and bowling. Dajin is a dedicated Dallas Mavericks fan and her favorite artists are the Chainsmokers and Black Bear. You can find her at the trendiest coffee shops in Austin brainstorming for new ideas or studying. By writing for HerCampus, she hopes that her passion for writing will allow her to connect with new people nationwide. Her instagram is @dajinkimm and her twitter is @dajin_kim