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With all of the midterm stress and the collective breakdown we had over that stupid dress and spring break seeming like it might never come (less than a week people!), DSG’s Mental Health Awareness Month couldn’t come at a better time. Although a step in the right stigma-fighting direction, it is important to note that upholding mental health is a lifelong pursuit that warrants attention every month. Here are some tips keeping up your mental health, for Mental Health Awareness Month and beyond.

1.     Meditate.

Meditation has been shown to reduce negative emotional states like anxiety and depression. It also has been shown to reduce the need for sleep and slow the aging process. You’ll be seeing zen-ifits in no time! (I’m so sorry for that awful pun)

2.     Unplug.

Studies have found that college student’s technology “addiction” is actually quite similar in intensity to drug cravings, and even has withdrawal symptoms like anxiety and depression. Not convinced yet? Another study found that college students who gave up social media, upon passing the initial “withdrawal” phase, were more relaxed and did better academically than their social media using peers.

3.     Exercise.

Resist the urge to binge on junk food and spend all day sitting at a table in Perkins.  While trekking over to Wilson may seem counterintuitive to studying, research has shown that exercise improves focus and decreases stress. Bench-press your way to success!

4.     Smile (and be Wonder Woman).

Seriously. Researchers have found that smiling makes you feel happier and power posing makes you feel more powerful. Magic whip and star-spangled hot pants not included.

5.     Make time to do the things you want to do.

Nothing feels better than kicking back with your friends after a long and stressful week. Or watching Netflix and eating an entire box of Girl Scout Cookies. No judgments. We’ve all been there. You do you, baby boo.  

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