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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Your energy is one of your most important assets at the start of a new semester. It is all about how you feel on the inside and how much energy you have to put into the things you do. If you maintain positive energy, then you will be able to focus on the good things and have a happier, healthier semester full of success.

Surround yourself with positive people

It’s no secret that we are who we surround ourselves with. If you are constantly around people who talk poorly about others and themselves, you might start having similar negative thoughts. If the people you surround also have a generally negative outlook on life, your own outlook might start to reflect that. If you are focused on academics this semester, it’s a good idea to find a group of friends that feel the same. They will not only inspire you with their own actions, but they will actively motivate you to do better.

Don’t take on too many responsibilities

We like to think of ourselves as invincible. Recently, a lot of people on the Internet have been circulating the phrase “we all have the same 24 hours.” Although its true we all have 24 hours in a day, that doesn’t mean we should spend all of them busy. When planning out your schedule, leave open spaces for fun activities or just relaxing. If you find that the responsibilities you’ve taken on are too much to handle, its okay to step away from some of them.

Journaling

Journaling is a great way to unwind at the end of the day. You can write about whatever you want, but writing about your thoughts and feelings is a great way to process whatever happened that day. That way, when you go to bed you are not carrying with you any negative thoughts or have anything unsaid left on your mind. It’s also a great way to get to know yourself better. Think of it as a conversation with a friend.

Set boundaries with others

Setting boundaries is one of the most important ways to protect yourself. If you don’t want to do something, it is absolutely okay to say no. If you find that someone is no longer a positive presence in your life, it is absolutely okay to stop giving them your time. Your happiness is the priority.

Figure out what makes you happy and do it

This can apply to your career or just where you go shopping. Life is the best when it’s spent doing something happy. It’s unrealistic to say that we should only do things that make us happy, but it’s not unrealistic to set time aside as much as your schedule allows. Taking extra steps to do what is the most satisfying rather than what is most convenient is worth the energy.

Take time away from social media

Social media is a fun distraction. Sometimes, it can mess up your mental health rather than boost it. The overstimulation of what other people are doing is not only exhausting but can open the door to comparison and jealousy. We often forget that what people choose to showcase on social media is just a highlights reel; we don’t see other people’s struggles. Start by cutting back your social media screen time a little every day.

Spend time outside

Nature is the most peaceful and freeing place you can be. Living on a college campus might see you spending more time in heavily populated areas and indoors than in a quiet outdoor setting. Finding a peaceful place to sit under the sun and meditate is a great way to not only preserve your positive energy but boost it.

Mackenzie Meleski is a passionate writer for Her Campus at VCU. She is currently double majoring in International Studies and Mass Communications. She loves her two cats, Leo and Loki, and her dog, Lucy. You will probably find her online shopping or watching reruns of The Great British Bake Off.
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