Finals were tough for me— and probably for you too. If you’re anything like me, you have to do something physical to keep your mind off the things stressing you out or giving you anxiety. Personally, I’ve grown tired of laying in bed or binge watching shows or movies because it lets my anxiety or stress rise. I’ve been in the process of creating healthier hobbies or activities to destress, so I’ve compiled a short list of them here! Note, you do not need to be ‘amazing’ at anything here—I’m certainly not. However, these activities are fun and can make you feel productive even when you’re not doing work!
I got this idea from my sister. I’ve started collecting magazines of things that I like and cutting pictures and phrases out. Besides being able to focus on something as simple as cutting paper or rearranging things to be pleasing to the eye, you can use scrapbooking to make scrapbooks (obviously), moodboards, or vision boards! I’ve been currently taking movie magazines and making moodboards out of different genres, because I am a big fan of film, but you can do this with any topic or look!
Painting can be fun for anyone, even if you don’t consider yourself an artist. You don’t even need to be good at it— buy a paint by numbers or even follow a Bob Ross tutorial if you’d like to do something that is smooth and soothing. Plus, you can get a pretty picture out of it.
This may seem a little old school, but crocheting can be incredibly fun. It wasn’t my vibe at all, and I was not interested in the idea, but then one of my friends showed me a starter kit of how to crochet a 3D dinosaur that she got from Amazon, and it is so adorable. If you want a little animal or buddy that you can say you built yourself, go ahead and buy a starter kit!
- Start a Random Sport
If you have the time and like to exercise, starting a random sport or doing a new physical activity can be a lot of fun. My roommate convinced me to play tennis with her, and I ended up enjoying it way more than I’d like to admit. Hitting a ball is also a great way to destress! Playing tennis, trying out roller skating or longboarding (if you have the supplies), or even simply using a hook-on miniature basketball hoop can be a nice way to keep yourself busy.
- Tried and True — Coloring in a Coloring Book
This is my end-all be-all thing that I always resort to when I want to calm myself or distress. You can purchase a physical coloring book (adult or child, no judgment), print out pages from your laptop, or even do it on your phone. The great thing about this is that you really can’t be bad at it, and there’s so many options that you can choose from. You could color something simple like flowers, or find a niche interest that you like, and go crazy.
- Try a New Look
If you feel stuck during finals or any other stressful time, I find it soothing to do a small change in my appearance. It gives me newfound confidence and makes me want to do things that are stressing me out, because I feel re-energized. Try doing a new design on your nails, a new hairstyle, or do something different with your makeup! If none of those are things that you typically do, you can try styling your clothes differently or look into something that makes sense for you, such as wearing a bag or a pair of shoes that you have hidden away in your closet.
This is just a short list, but I hope that these are simple enough to implement in your life and are interesting enough. They’re easy to do, painless (emotionally), and can end up making you feel more productive and less stressed or anxious. Good luck, and you’ve got this!