ways to lower your stress

By Angelica Melara

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has caused some schools to resort to semesters without breaks. Instead of having a spring break this year, many schools have decided to go from the first week of classes to finals all in one go.

In theory, this might have been a sound solution for stopping the spread of the virus. However, this means that students have had to do all of their work continuously throughout the semester. 

“I feel as though some teachers are giving more work this semester since things are mostly online,” says Isabella Minutillo, a junior at SUNY Plattsburgh.

The workload for some students has increased because of the idea that classes are online, which means students have more time to do assignments. 

This idea does not consider other classes that students have, or if they are working or anything else that might take time away from their classes. 

“It’s been assignment after assignment, and now it’s starting to get stressful,” Minutillo said.

Without spring break, students are starting to feel the dreaded “student burnout.” The Google definition for this is “Burnout in school happens when students face ongoing stress or frustration — with no time to relax and recharge.”

Here are some ways in which students can help themselves feel less stressed during this very stressful time.

1) Go on a drive

Photo by Alex Chernenko on Unsplash

If you or one of your friends has a car, it might be a good idea to drive around for a bit. You have the freedom to go anywhere and find an adventure, which is a lot less stressful than sitting in your room thinking about all of the work you have to do.

2) Go to the beach

Photo by Jordan Steranka on Unsplash

Take a blanket, a chair or just yourself, and make your way to the beach. Instead of telling your Amazon Alexa to “play waves crashing,” get out and get some Vitamin D and listen to the waves crashing in real life. It’s important to still be in touch with nature when you’re stressed because it has been proven that nature can not only make you feel better emotionally, but it is good for your physical wellbeing as well

3) Go to the gym

Photo by GRAHAM MANSFIELD on Unsplash

If you like working out or are simply looking for something to do, try hitting up your local gym. It doesn’t matter if you’re lifting weights or walking on a treadmill for 30 minutes because the endorphins, dopamine and other chemicals are being released in your brain and will make you feel better.

4) Watch a movie

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

You don’t have to necessarily leave your house if you want to feel less stressed. You can always turn on your TV and watch one of your favorite shows or movies. It is just important to take time out of your day for at least an episode and do something you genuinely want to do.

5) Take a shower

Photo by Jakayla Toney on Unsplash

I don’t say this one to sound rude but as actual advice. It is one of the simplest things a person can do if they want to feel less stressed. Whether you want to stand in a burning hot shower or an ice-cold one, taking a shower has been shown to increase a person’s mood because the temperature change is known to cause the body to start relaxing. Hot showers are also known to relax muscles and release tension which makes a person less stressed.

It does not matter what you do to feel less stressed, but it is important to remember that school does not have to come first. It is important, yes, but you and your wellbeing are more important. Take time out of each day to focus on yourself, and you’ll have yourself feeling less stressed in no time. 

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