My Daily Routines That Keep Me Sane

At this time of year, anxieties are especially high, with professors picking up the pace and piling on the homework and group projects. Don’t worry, though – I’ve got you covered. I’ve found that integrating certain daily routines into my schedule has helped with both my mental and physical health. Whether you’re the planning minute-by-minute type or the spontaneous type, a sufficient amount of routine can help anyone. With the following tips, your mid-semester stress will be managed in no time!

Honest soft tube

Washing My Face

Everyone’s skincare routine is different, and if I’m being totally honest, mine was almost nonexistent a few years ago. I’ve come a very long way since then, evolving from someone who neglected to even take off her makeup some nights, to someone who makes sure to cleanse every morning and night. At the bare minimum, make sure to wash your face at least once a day; it makes a huge difference.

This tip may seem super obvious since it’s integral to physical cleanliness. However, this is also essential for your mental cleanliness! If you can’t afford those bougie face masks you find on Instagram, it’s okay – basic self-care like a drugstore face wash is sometimes all you need. Even on my worst days, cleansing my face can make me feel like a new woman, totally refreshed and ready to conquer the world.

empty desk near curtain

Keeping My Room Clean

I used to be such a messy person, (and I’m talking clothes all over the place, to the point where you can’t see the floor), but once I reached college, I realized how vital it is to keep your space clean. If your room looks like mine used to, take a couple of hours on the weekend to get knee-deep in clean-up mode.

Once you get your space organized, make sure from then on to always put everything back in its place. Sure, we all have our days where we just need to throw our clothes on the ground and say “I’ll get them later.” That’s totally fine! Just try to dedicate 5-10 minutes of your day to tidy that forgotten stuff – picking up clothes off the floor, throwing out any accumulated trash, fixing your sheets, maybe stacking your textbooks. All of the little things that add up; I guarantee that once you take that little extra time out of your day, your mind won’t feel so foggy. You’ll be able to think more clearly and you won’t feel so tense. I didn’t comprehend how terribly my chaotic room had been polluting my brain until I started implementing this routine.

woman exercising indoors

Working Out

I’ve definitely had an on-and-off-again relationship with this one, but when I am consistently working out, my attitude and motivation exponentially improve while my stress levels plummet. Exercising daily, even if you could only squeeze a few squats into your busy day, is an excellent way to advance both your mental and physical health.

Obviously, if you’re putting in the work, you’re going to see and feel the physical results (the most important being that you feel yourself getting healthier – not how you look in the mirror). You may also notice huge improvements in your mental health… which persuades me to break a sweat even more than the physical benefits! After I’ve been working out consistently for a few weeks or just a few days, I notice myself relieved of a lot of anxiety. Because of this finding, I make sure to build time into my schedule for some squats, abs, pushups, or getting my heart rate up on the treadmill.

person writing on paper

Checklists

Yep, I’m a girl who loves a good list – a to-do list, a shopping list, you name it. In my opinion, checklists are the key to success and staying on top of your work. With all that college students have to juggle – homework, tests, clubs, jobs, social lives – it’s hard to keep track of every single due date.

I like to think I have a super reliable memory, but I’d be lost without a checklist or a weekly planner. It’s the perfect way to organize your thoughts and put them to paper (or on the sticky notes on your laptop) so you know exactly what you have to do next and also what you’ve already accomplished. There’s seriously no better feeling than striking a line through a finished project, and then at the end of the day looking back at the fully-crossed-off list with a sigh of relief. I can personally say this is a great way to deal with anxiety, instead of having everything jumbled in your thoughts all the time.

person holding iPhone 6 turned on

Listening to Music

Music is my medicine; it always has been. If I go a day without listening to music, something feels off. Usually, I take a chunk of time during my day to relax and listen to my favorite artists or explore new music. If my schedule is too packed that day, even putting in my earbuds on the short walk to class makes me feel better. I’ve found the artists and genres that cheer me up even on the rainiest days – I encourage you to do the same if you haven’t yet.

While I know music doesn’t do this same magic for everybody, I believe everyone has something that boosts their spirits when they’re feeling down. If you haven’t found your something yet, I encourage you to explore your hobbies and figure out what brings you joy! If you fall in love with a certain activity and you work it into your daily life, I am positive your mental state will improve.

assorted-color clothes lot

Picking Out My Outfits the Night Before

I’ve noticed that laying out my outfit the night before helps me immensely. Honestly, picking out my outfit in the morning is something I’m incapable of – I’ll try on like five different tops, change my socks a million times because nothing seems to match perfectly, and then I’ll end up throwing a sweatshirt on out of frustrated exhaustion.

On the other hand, when I pick out my clothes the night before, it saves me the confusion in the morning when my brain is still too sleepy to comprehend anything. That way, I have more time to focus on washing my face, brushing my teeth, eating breakfast, doing a quick makeup look, and gathering my laptop and books for class.

white cup with saucer near bok

Tea Before Bed

This is my most recent addition to my schedule, but it’s also now one of my favorites. I usually say I’m an iced coffee person, but lately, at night I’ve been craving hot tea. Especially as the temperature starts to drop, there’s nothing better than cuddling up at night with a blanket and a large mug of warm Sleepytime Tea. It’s a great way to either calm down after a busy day or prepare for one the next day. I try to relax fully when I do this, putting my phone and schoolwork aside, maybe painting a facemask on, and getting into bed.

Hopefully, you’ve found these tips helpful and you’re able to implement some into your own schedule! Some of these may not work for everyone, so I urge you to find the little things you love throughout the day that keep your mind at ease and help you relax.

 

Credit: Cover, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7