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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Virginia Tech chapter.

I’ve tried essentially every stress-coping mechanism in the book. Honestly, I find that half of these techniques cause me even more stress. Common suggestions for stress such as “take a deep breath” and “just try and relax” are virtually impossible when you’re under serious stress. The very thought of a meditation coloring book gives me the stress of a balding 45-year-old man going through a divorce. So, here are some tips to dealing with stress that have actually worked for me.


1. Boxing

When you’re stressed out, it’s hard to think about working out. The idea of pushing your way through swarms of students and fighting for that ONE hip abduction machine in McComas may be enough to drive you away from working out all together. If that’s the case, you should try out boxing! Not only is it killer cardio, but it can release anger you didn’t even know you had. I take classes at Blacksburg Boxing and Fitness and they’ve always been great! Now, please allow me to pull a memory deep out of your subconscious with this picture of Victoria Justice fighting Miranda Cosgrove on iCarly.



2. Aromatherapy

If you don’t own a diffuser, you should get one. My roommate, Kelly, introduced me to the lavish world of diffusers last year and I haven’t looked back. There are endless selections of essential oils to dilute in your diffuser, but my favorites for stress reduction are lavender and lemon. Sickness can also leave you feeling overwhelmed during the school year, so thankfully, there are essential oils to help cure you as well. Eucalyptus, tea tree, and peppermint are all great for reducing cough and congestion. Candles are another great option because they give you an excuse to take a trip to TJ-Maxx and spend the remaining $12.06 you have in your bank account.


3. Cut back on the caffeine

A technique that’s made a huge difference in my stress levels is limiting my caffeine intake. I’m not advising you completely cut out coffee; I’m not a psychopath. However, try to stick to one cup of coffee in the morning and don’t drink coffee after 5 p.m. I averaged about three k-cup coffees, two Dunkin Donuts espresso shots, and a Bruegger’s iced coffee every day last year; so if I can cut back to one cup a day, so can you. The easiest way to accomplish this goal is to drink a lot of water throughout the day, even if it means you have to get up to pee twice a class. If you feel like you’re really struggling throughout the day, try to swap your coffee for an herbal tea. I’ve come to realize that the mid-day crash that leaves you feeling like caffeine is the only thing that can revive you is not supposed to happen if you’re eating right, exercising, and going to bed early enough. Don’t let your body convince you that you need six cups of coffee a day the same way that your friends convinced you needed to get artificial feathers sewn into your hair in 2012.


4. GoldynGlow Tea

After intense research (hearing a promotion on a blogger’s podcast), I found GoldynGlow Calm – an organic superfood blend with ashwagandha. You’re probably assuming Ashwagandha is a future Kardashian baby name, but it’s really just a medicinal herb. I was a little skeptical when I bought this product, but I feel an instant sense of relief when I drink this mixture. Ashwagandha has several proven health benefits. Most notably, ashwagandha has the ability to reduce stress and anxiety. It can also lower cortisol, reduce inflammation, and increase brain functions, and it tastes delicious in warm almond milk! You can order some here. Now say ashwagandha three times fast.

5. Guided meditation

Meditation is one of the mostly widely practiced forms of mind-body techniques to calm and center yourself. However, the idea of sitting crossed-legged on a floor attempting to clear your mind for half an hour isn’t always appealing. The Headspace app is a great alternative to meditating on your own. There are guided meditations ranging from two to ten minutes that allow you to simply close your eyes and relax. The man who leads the meditations also has an Australian accent, which is always a bonus. If the idea of meditation still freaks you out, the Nike Running app features guided running sessions through Headspace!


I hope some of these tips help you calm your stress and act like you’re way more zen than you really are, like I do all the time.


Abby Williams

Virginia Tech '21

A Virginia Tech public relations major, minoring in marketing and integrative health and wellness, who loves to write and bring others value. Check out my blog at abbywilliams.online!
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Chera Longfritz

Virginia Tech

Just a funky lil girl trying to put my thoughts into relatable words!!! I've had the dream of being Anne Hathaway's character in Devil Wears Prada since I was like three. Maybe without being someone's bitch, but you know, everyone has to start somewhere.