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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FSU chapter.

The moment the leaves start changing, so does my mood. The start of autumn may be exciting for some, but for me, I’m always apprehensive because the hardest part of the semester is about to begin. I consider fall to be the start of my seasonal stress. I used to dread it, but now that I’m a more experienced senior, I know how to cope in a healthier way. Overall, spooky season is here, but to me, there is nothing scarier than poor mental health. Here are my favorite ways I get through it.

1. watching nostalgic fall media

Using nostalgia to my advantage is what gets me through fall. I find a lot of joy in watching media that reminds me of the changing seasons. Shows like Gilmore Girls, Over The Garden Wall, and Twin Peaks have become permanent background noises as I do homework, run errands, or complete chores. They brings a warm sense of comfort even when what I’m doing feels overwhelming.

For movies, I like to pick anything from the ABC Family’s “31 Days of Halloween” or Disney Channel’s “Monstober” when the situation is even more dire. After a long day, the goal is to get lost in something familiar. I’m not afraid to bring treats, snacks, or full-course meals to this event either. I’ve learned the hard way that if I don’t choose a time to relax, my body will do it for me.

2. going to outdoor events

Unfortunately, I regret to inform you that going outside really is amazing. Smelling the roses is the greatest thing you can do for yourself. Letting yourself become one with your room is great — until it’s not. Because I’m notorious for being a homebody, I have made it a goal for myself this October to go to one event a week. Fear not, this doesn’t include anything crazy. The goal is to enjoy autumn-related events that are local and fun. Some on-campus and off-campus events that I plan to attend are the 2023 Chicago Tour, the Northside Market Fall Festival, and the 2023 Greek Food Festival.

I’ve gotten a lot of my ideas by asking around, looking at campus social pages, or looking at a few flyers here and there. It’s okay to let yourself stay inside every so often, but touching grass does wonders for your psyche.

3. getting artsy

Autumn can be a period where overspending and emotional eating are the bane of my existence; everything pumpkin spice-themed is incredibly tempting to me. To get into the autumn spirit while battling stress and not breaking my bank account, I love to get artsy. Whether it’s painting, drawing, or building, I love to indulge in it all. I love to dive into my art supplies or spend hours on my iPad creating. The moment I feel myself getting overwhelmed — and it’s not something Gilmore Girls or a movie night can solve — I head into my room to make something fun. I’ll make paper houses or cute posters for my room, or I’ll follow a tutorial to ease the pressure of being creative. I choose to channel my frustration into creation, not destruction.

In general, fall can be a stressful time, so I practice self-love by getting ahead or remedying stress. It doesn’t have to be a time that I associate with midterms and finals if I make taking care of myself a mandatory assignment!

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Neissa Philemon is a pre-medical student who is incredibly interested in the arts, pop culture, literature, and everything in between. She hopes to become a dermatologist.