7 Tips To Beat the Back-To-School Rut

School starting back up again isn’t necessarily a fun time. Homework, papers, deadlines, and that one kid who never stops talking during class…it’s all part of the experience, unfortunately, but it doesn’t have to be awful all of the time. Here are some tips to help beat the back-to-school rut and brighten up your day.

Be mindful 

By that, I mean check in with yourself throughout this busy time. Our emotional health is just as important as our physical health. If you’re doing well mentally, you’re likely to feel better physically, too. Whether you achieve that through meditation, journaling, exercise, a hobby, calling up a friend, these all are valid ways to practice mindfulness. For others, it’s finding ways to be in the moment and embracing spontaneity. Simply try to make sure you’re proactive about your mental health so that it might be easier for you to manage it.

Time management, y’all!

Organize your weekly schedule so that while your schoolwork’s getting done (boo, homework), you are also free to be social. I, myself, still struggle to master this, but when you do, you’ll not only feel like a grown boss-woman, but you’ll also feel freer than ever. It’ll allow you to be less stressed about, well, everything, which is definitely an added bonus. Get a fun planner, or customize that notebook that’s been sitting on your desk for a couple weeks to make it a bullet journal…the possibilities are endless. Scrapbook, craft, color-code, and label to your heart’s content.

Block out time to dedicate to your hobbies

And take opportunities to try new things, too! Worse-case scenario, you don’t like it, but best-case scenario, you walk away with a new passion and/or skill that you can enjoy developing! We all have an inner casually-knitting-in-the-subway persona…let her shine! Embrace your “weird."

Join a new club or student association

Even if you think you’re too cool for NYU’s vast selection of clubs (yes, I can see your eye roll from all the way over here), they can be a great way to meet new people who share your interests and to forge solid friendships. They can become a part of your support system throughout your years at NYU, which is an invaluable thing to have. You might also find something fun you never thought you would involve yourself in!

Listen to your impulses

Take a different route to school or work, wander through a park, try a new lunch spot, playlist, podcast, whatever it is...just keep it fresh! Find inspiration in the mundane. If you’re creative, find ways to have that be reflected in your everyday life so that you can stay inspired. Personally, I have really been enjoying calligraphy, and even simply practicing writing the letters of the alphabet has proved to be a very relaxing experience for me. 

Greenery!

Tis the season… Fall means apple-picking, pumpkin-picking, you name it - it’s all just a good excuse to escape the city and its concrete for a day or weekend. Hop right on that train to take some time away from the university campus to recharge in nature. If you’re not into apple-picking and the like, there are lovely outdoor museums such as Storm King and the Dia Beacon awaiting your visit. If you don’t love museum visits either, you can always grab a friend or your whole gang and head upstate to do some hiking. And if you don’t want to go too far, there’s always the botanical gardens right here in the city. The world’s your oyster!

If things ever get too hard…

Seek support from friends, family, professionals, or others. Please reach out to members of your support system or utilize the resources made available to you at NYU like the Wellness Exchange (212-443-9999). It won’t always feel like this! Treat yourself when you can, too, as it can be a good way to acknowledge your efforts and reward yourself. Go forth and conquer the year, we're rooting for you!

Photos courtesy of Pexels.