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Do you desperately need a break from studying? Have your professors started bringing up your upcoming midterm exams and papers? Does it feel like the school year just started, and we are already drowning in work? This time of year brings extra stress because suddenly everything is due at the exact same time. Sometimes I joke that stress is my middle name because I feel like I have this sense of pressure year-round. If you take some time for yourself to avoid letting the stress completely take over your life, you’ll perform better on your exams and feel less overwhelmed. These three incredible tricks have helped me do just that!

 Get Creative

Draw! Doodle! Color! Do anything that will get your creative juices flowing. Channeling your inner child always helps relieve stress, whether you use a coloring app or an actual coloring book. Five Below has the best adult coloring books. They also have packs of gel pens, crayons, and markers at an affordable price. If you’re not into coloring, try writing anything that comes to mind in a journal. Pretty soon, you’ll forget all about school stresses- at least temporarily. Take your creative activity outside and listen to some calming music while you do it. Trust me, you’ll be in a calmer mood in no time. 

Get Outside

Many studies have shown that spending time outdoors helps fight anxiety and puts people in an overall better mood. I can personally attest to this since I tend to feel the happiest, most motivated, and most productive on sunny days! We all know that staying cooped up in one room all day is not beneficial to productivity or your mental health! Whether you jog around your community, walk along on a nature trail, or just sit outside and gazing at a nice view, breathing in the fresh air will help you think more calmly and clearly. Distancing yourself from technology by being outdoors will give you a fulfillment you didn’t know you needed. 

Get Connected 

Have you ever noticed how much better you feel after long conversations with family or friends? We tend to think think we need to eliminate social interactions to focus during midterms, but these social connections are essential to keeping us sane and grounded. You can share a few laughs with friends during lunch or vent about your stresses together after a late-night study session. Keeping up with some safe social interaction during these isolating times will remind you that you’re not alone.

Personally, I like going to my parents when my stress levels are sky-high because they reassure me of my potential and give me motivational advice, but your support system doesn’t have to be your parents. Especially if you’re living far from family, going to a mentor and the people who matter most to you through FaceTime or in-person will help you stay connected to those who want you to succeed, and will reinforce your self-esteem during this hectic season.

 

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