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As we get deeper into this semester, it is important to take care of our mental health and bodies. Stress is a major part of every college student’s life, but knowing how to deal with it can help us stay healthy while we get through the semester. I know stress is something I have a hard time dealing with sometimes, so recently, I have been learning how I can balance taking care of myself and still taking care of all my obligations as a student. These are some of the things that I have learned that help me and my friends to take care of themselves in the middle of a busy semester! 

Go for a drive

This is my go-to stress reliever! I don’t know what it is about driving, but it is so freeing to play music, roll the windows down, and leave your stresses behind you. My favorite drive would be driving along the 101, where you can roll down your windows and smell the ocean. This is one of my favorite ways to relax and destress after a long week. 

Plan out time in your schedule for self-care

I think time management is a big part of learning how to balance your classes, sports, work schedules, and social lives. I don’t think enough of us make time for ourselves during the week. In your schedule, try to block out time at the end of the day or week. During this time, do something that you want to do! Don’t worry about school, work, or any social obligations. This is your time to destress and recuperate. For me, I try to set out an hour at the end of the night to read a book or watch a movie. When doing this at the end of the day, I’m more motivated to get through the next day!

Take a bath

Baths are super stress relieving and good ways to practice self-care and relaxation in the middle of a busy week. Living in a dorm may limit some of us college students to only being able to shower. Either way, it is good to relax. Play some soothing music and use a bath bomb or shower steamer and take care of your body! One of the best feelings in the world after a very stressful day is taking the time to put on a face cleansing mask, then getting in the shower and washing your hair. 

Go to the beach!

We are blessed to live so close to the ocean. Being able to go to the beach is one of my favorite ways to destress. The salt in the air from the beach can help relax your mind and clear your lungs. You can go sit out by the ocean and read a book or even go for a run on the beach and just relax.

Go out to dinner with friends 

Go hang out with your friends! In the middle of a busy week, it can be hard to make time for hanging out with your friends. It can be hard to make time for hanging out with your friends. Going to dinner with a group of friends can help you take a break from your work and obligations while having fun. Taking a break from work and being social can help get your mind off the stressful week, and most importantly, allows you to break from your work for a bit!

Get involved with CAPS 

Cal Lutherans Counseling and Psychological Service (CAPS) is here to help you! Each student at Cal Lutheran gets eight free visits per year, and this can be a very helpful resource for you to use. If you need to get anything off your chest or if you are stressed about an upcoming test, it is helpful to talk to someone. Getting some of that stress off your chest can help bring a sense of peace. Our campus has plenty of resources for help, so reach out and utilize these things when needed. 

Go to the movies

Whether you go with a group of friends or by yourself, the movies are a great way to take a break from your busy schedule. Going to the movies forces you to take a break from a busy week. During this time, you can enjoy candy or popcorn while seeing something new!

Exercise

Exercise is a great way to deal with stress and is also really good for your body! Going for a run can clear your mind and make you feel so much better. Exercise has been proven to increase your focus in school. So not only can it help you destress, but it can also help you get your assignments done! This is also a great way to overall take care of your body and your mind. 

Start a new hobby

There are plenty of hobbies that you can pick up that are good for stress relief! Making time in a busy schedule to paint, draw, or do what you enjoy will help you destress from school. Try a few and stick with one that you like! If you know art isn’t for you, try to knit or go fishing! There are plenty of options for stress-relieving hobbies you can start.

Get a full night’s rest

Getting a full night of rest is super important for focus and stress relief! This is our body’s way of recuperating every night and is super important for our health. If you are pulling all-nighters too often, this is going to increase your stress levels and even bring down your performance on tests. Please take care of yourself and get a full night’s rest. You will thank yourself later!

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Ashley Cope

Cal Lutheran '25

Hello! My name is Ashley Cope and I am a Freshman at California Lutheran University. I am a Communications major with an emphasis in Journalism. I love reading, writing, and listening to music in my free time!
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