I’m an engineering student. It’s fair to say that most of my time is spent in class, doing homework, or studying for those classes. Sprinkle in a few extracurricular activities, trips to the gym, group meetings, research team meetings, and free time becomes your most limited resource.
I think all of us know that mental health is important, we just tell ourselves that everything else we have to get done is more important. I can’t make you set aside time for yourself, but I’ll tell you all the good things that worked out for me when I set aside time for mine. When I gave myself permission to slow down, I began to enjoy my down time and use it to refuel. I’ve found that when my friends want to get dinner together, I’ll take a break with them. It can even be taking ten minutes to call your parents to catch-up and trust me, they’ll appreciate it too. If I want time just for myself, I’ll put in my headphones and walk across campus. The Southern California sunshine always makes my days better!
Taking time for yourself won’t fix all of your problems, but it’s a good start towards a better mental state. When you take 10 minutes to do something small and give your brain some rest, you’ll be better prepared to tackle that night of homework. I’m sure there’s science somewhere to back that up. Never forget, school is important!! But so are you!!!
Here’s some of my favorite apps to get organized, be more productive, or help me chill out. Hope it helps!!
-Reminders App: create to-do lists and get notifications when deadlines are approaching
-Stickies on Mac: paste sticky notes to your desktop and write motivational quotes, your professors office hours, or important things to remember
-Calm: relieve stress through mindfulness, AND it’s free for USC students!