Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FIU chapter.

I know that college can be a confusing and very challenging time for students. It’s a period of growth, change, learning, and fun.

From piles of homework, nerve-wracking deadlines, and exams that keep us up at night – learning to balance these things out is a tedious task. Let’s not forget that aside from all that schoolwork, we need to nourish and care for our social life, family, and most importantly: our own mental and physical health. I’m here to personally share all the things I do regularly to maintain good mental health and how to handle the stress and difficulties that come along during these years in college. If you feel overwhelmed and heaviness is seemingly weighing down on you, just know your feelings are valid and you’re not alone! Never hesitate to put yourself and your priorities first.


Oftentimes, I tend to take on way too much than what I truly can handle. In my experience, I joined so many organizations during my freshman year of college with responsibilities I just couldn’t balance out and find time for. I ended up failing many expectations, which led to me feeling guilty and feeling that I wasn’t enough. If you have ever experienced something remotely similar to this, just know that you ARE enough. Taking too many responsibilities at once and not having enough time for them often leads to absolute chaos. If you’re already a full-time student, I would not recommend joining 10 different organizations and having 2 jobs all at once. Your mental health and your growth are of the utmost importance. Make yourself a calendar in which you can organize your week and space out your responsibilities so that when deadlines come close, you don’t feel yourself encountering an overwhelming amount of homework that you can’t handle. Joining extracurriculars is a great opportunity to involve yourself with like-minded individuals, make friends, and explore different interests you may have. But learn to be aware when enough is enough! Learn to find a balance in which you don’t feel like you’re constantly on the edge with barely a slip of time.


Now, I know this is one you’ve probably heard before, but I’m here to remind you about how important sleep is for your mental health. All-nighters are not fun and don’t serve you well in the long run! I have lost count of how many college students have told me they’ve barely slept as a result of their studies. Remember this: better sleep increases concentration, helps you stay focused, and improves academic performance. The amount of ZZZs you get at night will have such an impact on your entire day, and you probably won’t even realize it. From an increased risk of motor vehicle accidents, impaired moods, lack of efficient learning, and brain fog- little to no sleep can have a terrible impact on your mental health. Everyone requires different amounts of hours for optimal academic performance. Some individuals perform better with 7 hours and others with 9. I’m no professional, but aim for 7 or more hours of sleep, keep a consistent sleep schedule, and avoid scrolling through your phone before bed and you’ll be sure to notice a difference in the way you feel throughout the day and how well you perform during school.

sleep aid products hero?width=1024&height=1024&fit=cover&auto=webp
Emily Veith


Did you know that students perform better in school when they are emotionally and physically healthy, according to studies? They engage in less risky or antisocial behavior, concentrate better, and achieve higher test scores. A well-balanced diet can help students increase their energy levels, maintain a healthy immune system, cope with stress better, and enhance their concentration and performance in school. It’s great to have a balanced diet and eat all the delicious foods this world provides. But don’t forget to provide your body and mind with the vitamins and nutrients it truly needs. Fill your plates up with colorful vegetables and fruits, avoiding high-processed foods. Creating your meal plan is also a great way to save time throughout a busy school week and keep up with your nutrition. Eating out is fine occasionally as Chick-Fil-A and Panda Express are tempting options to buy from. However, making these foods into a daily habit may have an impact on not only your bank account but your physical and mental well-being. High-processed foods and unhealthy sugars lead to an increase in mood swings as a result of nutritional imbalance. So just remember to fuel yourself well so that your mind and body can function well.


What exactly is mindfulness? In simple words, mindfulness is the quality of becoming more aware or conscious of the things you feel and sense at the moment, without judgment, and having more understanding towards yourself.

Start with a mindful morning by setting intentions and making sure the actions you commit throughout the day are more compassionate and with meaning. You can do this by journaling or practicing breathing exercises soon after awakening. Throughout the day, listen to your body. Are you tired? Are you hungry? Do you feel overwhelmed? Pay attention to these underlying feelings hidden beneath the surface and act upon them.
Doing yoga, going to the gym, gardening, walking, meditation, journaling, reading- practicing mindful activities can go a long way in reducing stress and giving yourself more of a purpose. During your workouts, set out new goals and master new skills. Shift your mind from feeling overwhelmed and busy into inspired, strong, and accomplished.
If you’re ever feeling stressed and like everything in your life is spiraling out of your control, remember to breathe. Pause what you’re doing. Take a deep breath. Ask yourself: “What do I need at this moment?”. When you realize what you need and not what you want, give it to yourself.

Don’t forget, everybody is embarked on this same journey of life and aspires for similar things as you. That being tranquility, happiness, and ease. And although life may get bumpy from time to time, don’t ever lose sight of what’s truly important: YOU. Take every hardship as a learning experience and one in which you can learn and become stronger. Keep your mind healthy, as it is the most powerful thing we have…

My name is Catalina Prieto and I am a new writer for HerCampus at Florida International University! Have a wonderful day, beauties. ♥