5 Ways to Take Care of Yourself When Second Semester Drama Hits

It’s a couple of weeks into second semester, and we all know what that means: a renewed cycle of drama and stress. All the petty drama that you thought you left behind last semester rears its ugly head once more, and honestly, it can get difficult to deal with. Balancing the typical college student’s commitments of homework, a job, clubs and sports, and issues amongst friends or relatives is often overwhelming, so I thought I would take the time to share what I’ve been doing over the past three weeks to maintain some sense of mental stability and sanity.

Oh, and also as a quick PSA before I begin, I would just like to say that none of these tips are meant to be taken as replacements for serious treatments for mental health, like medication or therapy! I’m not saying that going outside or doing a face mask will magically cure depression or anxiety, I’m just trying to offer some personal advice on dealing with stress and drama in general, so please take my advice with a grain of salt. Now, without further ado, please enjoy!

1: Make Time to Spend with Friends or Family Who Don’t Stress You Out

https://www.pexels.com/photo/four-women-standing-on-mountain-1574650/

One of the biggest things I took away from my singular anthropology class freshman year is that humans are social creatures. No matter who you are or whether you’re more introverted or extroverted, occasional interactions with people who love and care about you are always good for the soul. Taking time out of your week to share a meal with a friend in the dining hall, or even getting a quick cup of coffee, can be really helpful for mental health in general. Or, if it’s friends that are the issue, maybe make time for a Skype call back home. Sometimes the best thing to hear when you’re stressed is just comforting words of encouragement from your family. Either way, checking in with a loved one and venting your feelings to an outside party has always been beneficial for me, and I highly recommend this to other people who may be struggling.

2: Do Something Just For Yourself

https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-woman-looking-at-the-mirror-774866/

This is a big one! If you are going through a rough time dealing with a bunch of forces out of your control, it can be super great to schedule something in your calendar that’s just for you. I have a close friend who gets her nails done regularly every two weeks, and she considers this to be one of the best indicators of her mental health. If she misses that appointment, she knows she’s got an unhealthy amount on her plate. You could do the same thing by scheduling Netflix time or making a little self-date at your favorite coffee shop. Either way, doing something that’s for no other reason than because you like it can be a great way to check in with yourself and make sure everything’s going okay.

3: Do Something Kind for Someone Else

https://www.pexels.com/photo/people-taking-groupie-near-bridge-1353351/

After doing something kind for yourself, consider doing some type of community service that benefits someone else. In times of high stress and drama, it can be difficult to focus on things outside of your little bubble of friends. In my experience, stepping out of this bubble and working in service to others can help you gain perspective and reflect on the problems you’re facing, and that can help you find solutions. Also, doing an act of pure good for someone else can just make you feel better in general, and that in turn can help overall mood and bring you back above all that petty BS.

4: Leave Your Room

https://www.pexels.com/photo/adult-adventure-beautiful-climb-287240/

Leaving your room is important for similar reasons as doing good for others. When you feel trapped in a specific social issue, it’s easy to barricade yourself in and hide from your problems. However, taking the time to leave your space and explore areas you may have never visited before can help you to remember how small we all are in the grand scheme of things. Each of us is only one person out of over 7 billion other people, and when considered under that lens, problems can seem smaller and more manageable.

5: Work on Organization & Productivity

https://www.pexels.com/photo/flat-lay-photography-of-calendar-1020323/

Look, I’m not going to tell you to bullet journal if that’s not your thing. But keeping a calendar, schedule, or list of tasks to complete during the day can help to keep your moods and emotions relatively stable throughout the day. When I look at my Google calendar or my paper calendar and see my tasks as an itemized list, I tend to get less overwhelmed. There’s a certain power we gain by owning our business and tackling things one by one, and that power helps me to say no to engaging in unproductive discussions that I know will only contribute to the stress and drama that surround me. The same power can also be found by doing simple tasks like vacuuming your room or doing a load of laundry. It’s okay to take the time to do seemingly mundane or secondary tasks first if you know that they will help you feel better about your general state of being!

To sum things up, I know just as well as any other busy college student that balancing all of the things we have on our plates is really tough. But in my experience, there are steps we can take to make things a bit better day by day. So I hope the tips I have shared help you to feel a little bit more in control, and I hope you know you’re not alone in feeling the way you do. Also, know that things are going to be okay. Keep moving forward and keep trying your best!