Little Things to Brighten the Day

College, and life, in general, can be stressful sometimes. That's why it is so crucial for you to take care of yourself and your environment in order to make your everyday life a bit easier. Stressful times will never cease to exist, but neither will ways to enjoy the present.

  1. 1. Create a Nice Environment 

    Personally, my head is in a much better place when my environment is a better place. Your day-to-day study and living spaces can be made into environments that you enjoy being in. Personalization can brighten any day whether its through pop culture references, aesthetics, or styles. You can boost your serotonin by covering your laptop case with cute stickers or by printing pretty pictures to decorate your walls. I find myself smiling anytime I see the decorations around my room and on my desk. In addition, fill your space with some self-care items. Wax melters, soft blankets, and pretty lights (such as fairie lights) can bring a warm atmosphere into your room. I find it so much easier to wake up to my Christmas lights than to the standard lights that my school provides, and that alone is such a nice start to my day.

  2. 2. Romanticize Your Work 

    At times, it seems impossible. How can work be romanticized or enjoyed? It can take a little bit of work to change your perspective. Pretend that you're the main character. Listen to film scores and ambiances when you study and envision a character in a movie studying the same material. If you've created a place where you enjoy studying, you are already halfway there. The work can become even more enjoyable if you enjoy looking at it. Be organized with your notes in a way that works best for you. Whether that's by using different colored pens or cute calendars, you can find yourself looking forward to organizing and completing your work. Remember that you are completing these tasks to reach a goal. Find the motivation and the purpose behind the work. If it's important to you, it can be tackled. Many students will go to great lengths to make work more enjoyable. Recently, I discovered a Zoom room that was simply created for students from all over to join and work amongst others. This can help one to stay focused if one prefers working with others (even if it is through a screen). Find what works best for you! I believe in you.

  3. 3. Take Little Breaks 

    Breaks are important! Of course, work is important as well, but you can't forget to live in the present and embrace the opportunities around you. Setting a timer on your phone is a great way to separate your work time from your breaks in order to structure your day. As I have mentioned in a previous article, this app, Flora, can be used to set study timers. During the time that you study without checking your phone, you are actually growing a tree! When you do take your study or work break, you can do whatever you would like as a gift to yourself. Quick tasks can include scrolling through Tik Tok, stretching, taking a stroll, photographing, reading, writing, napping, FaceTiming a friend, or making a cup of tea. I recommend creating a list of break ideas for yourself in order to switch things up from time to time and to try new things.

Even if you are not looking to organize your space, romanticize your work, or plan your study breaks, it is important to find the beauty in everyday life. Each day can hold something beautiful in it if you choose to see it. Whether that's the way the sun shines through the treetops or the way your new candle smells, life has given you the chance to be present. You have so many opportunities available to you and even more that you've yet to discover. You never know what could happen, and that may be a daunting thought, but it's also a really beautiful one.