The holidays pose quite a stressful time for college students. Winter break is on its way, but before that comes around, you have finals to take, gifts to give, and traveling to worry about. If you find your stress skyrocketing this time of year, check out a few of these simple tips for staying calm during the holidays. You’ll find ways to manage your stress through finals and at home with the whole family—check it out!
Stick to a Schedule
During this time of year, you can easily ignore the schedule you want to stick to. However, disregarding your schedule can end up creating a lot of unnecessary stress for your body and your mind. Sticking to your schedule can help you manage the stress holidays can bring.
During Finals: Don’t abandon your sleep schedule, just try to manage your time throughout the day so that you don’t have to pull all-nighters.
During Winter Break: Try to eat at the same times you normally would—especially with big holiday dinners.
Utilize Essential Oils
Reap the many benefits of essential oils—the relaxation and stress reduction will do wonders to help you stay calm during the holidays. Figure out which scents relax, give energy, or help with your sleep—it can be different for everyone.
During Finals: Use a diffuser while you study, and try out eucalyptus for focus or lavender for stress relief.
During Winter Break: Rub some of your favorite essential oils on your temples and pulse points to calm you down.
Try Out the SBNRR Technique
SBNRR—stop, breathe, notice, reflect, respond. It’s very easy to react automatically when stress gets high during the holidays. You can easily get angry, frustrated, and sad when something unexpected happens, so instead of reacting right away, take a moment to try SBNRR.
During Finals: Try this during tests when you panic about not knowing the answer. Stop, and breathe, before you freak.
During Winter Break: When a family member makes a snide comment, try this technique before you react and things end up awkward at home.
Get Some Exercise In
Exercise means endorphins, which means a much calmer you. Again, it’s easy to ignore your routine during this time of year, but exercising daily will help soothe any tension that may occur. Even if sunshine isn’t present, exercise will control any rampant emotions.
During Finals: Before any big exams, or in between studying, head outside for a walk—even just a stroll around the block will help!
During Winter Break: Try to go on a walk every day so that you can keep stress at bay. If any conversations ooze anxiety, head out for a short hike.
Forget About Perfection
Finally, to remain calm during the holidays, you have to do your best to let go of the notion of perfection. Trying to reach perfection is what leads to stress you can’t relieve. Try your best to maintain a realistic idea of what you can and cannot accomplish during this time of year.
During Finals: You may want to handle everything, but that’s not always possible. Do your best at what you can manage, and the rest (a clean room, extra-curriculars) can wait until later.
During Winter Break: Embrace the chaos of the season—don’t try to do more than you can, and understand that slip-ups will happen. Perfection isn’t possible!