Disclaimer: The information, articles, and tips portrayed on this blog, while based on research, do not constitute medical advice. The opinions expressed are meant to educate and inform, but not to dictate lifestyle choices or personal beliefs. These articles are meant to provoke thought on issues surrounding college health and to inform the Hopkins community of healthy information and resources.

5.04.2011

Relaxation 101

5.04.2011
Hello, world! It’s the last week of classes and you’re probably wondering how you can possibly get through it with so much work. I, too, am barely getting by, and am struggling to see the end in sight. It helps, though, to take some time and put things in perspective with some relaxation. It’s hard to find time for “you”, but we all procrastinate, so here I am, dreaming up solutions to productively procrastinate. I’m just a student like everyone else, so these are time-tried ways that I take time out of my work, but don’t wreck my GPA in the process.

READ ON THE BEACH- If you have a book you’ve been dying to read, go take the chance to relax on the beach (after you’ve covered yourself in sunscreen!) for an hour. Not only will you take your mind off of work, but you’ll get to have fun and soak up some sun.

TAKE A SHORT NAP- Thirty minutes is all it takes- you don’t actually have to fall asleep too! What I do is that I come back from class, get changed into pajamas (or something similar, to put myself in the sleep frame of mind), climb into bed, cover myself in blankets, grab my giant stuffed Eeyore, put on a sleep mask, and close my eyes. First, I try to empty my mind of all thoughts. To do that, I try really hard to think about the most irrelevant things, from a cute pair of shoes to something tasty. Finally, I drift off into thoughts like feeling sand between my toes…and I actively just let go of everything. Even if I don’t fall asleep, I feel much better, and certainly refreshed!

GO WORK OUT- Before the semester got crazy; I was a Bikram Yoga fiend. Now I try to take some time to at least go on a long walk every evening to clear my mind. Exercise releases endorphins…and you know what that does  Maybe take an hour to go for a run around campus, work out in the Rec Center, just get out of your room, or the library for that matter.

MEDITATE- I grew up in a culture that advocated meditation as a part of daily life, but until recently, I really couldn’t get into it because I always felt trapped in my mind. (see earlier blog entry Can’t Get Out of My Head) Even if you’re not the spiritual type, taking some time to just sit in a quiet space, close your eyes, and reflect on just being is a powerful experience.

DO WHAT YOU WANT- Watch a movie on Netflix, go to bed an hour early, eat a scoop of ice cream, just take some time to do what makes you happy. If you’re feeling better, you’ll be more productive. No one likes to do work while down in the dumps.

So here’s to the end of classes! We’ve had a great semester and I’m looking forward to more!

In health,
Aishwarya, a member of PEEPs

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