Remembering how important self-care and relaxation are


Megan Stoerman

When it comes to managing stress it is important to remember to take time for oneself. Some ways to do this include taking care of plants, exercising, reading, and journaling.

Megan Stoerman, Editor-In-Chief

All throughout the school year, but especially as summer break draws closer, many find themselves trapped in the vicious cycle of school primarily consisting of going to school, doing homework and studying. Even though all of these are necessary and good things, it is also essential to take time for yourself even through the busy stress and chaos of the end of the school year. Taking time for yourself throughout your busy weeks should be fruitful and leave you feeling refreshed to face the rest of the day’s tasks. Below you will find some beneficial ways to relax and unwind even with a daunting math test or English paper stressing you out.

One of the most essential parts of a healthy lifestyle includes sleep. Without sleep the body is not as able to respond quickly to whatever the day throws its way. Getting plenty of rest is essential to finishing the year out strong. Sleeping enough will allow you to ace the test and be prepared for hours of homework without getting burnt out and too tired to go on. It will also allow you focus at the task at hand better without crashing.

Many know that sleep is very important but few teenagers actually know how to schedule their days around those quality six plus hours of sleep. One essential key to making sure that you get enough sleep is knowing what I like to call your “studying limit.” Think back to a time when you stayed up late studying for major exam or working on homework late into the night and how you felt the next day. Were you groggy and maybe not able to complete your test to the ability needed to get a good grade? Now you know that whatever time you stayed up till is too late for you to function adequately the next day. Next time that you have a big test try and work your studying schedule around an earlier bedtime and see how you fare the next day. If you are still too tired the next day, push it back even further each time until you find your adequate amount of sleep to do well on an exam the following day.

Now that you have sleep under control, taking some time during the day to recharge and relax is key. Try and find some time throughout the day when you are not on the move to relax and maybe catch up on a TV show or read a chapter of a new book. This time might be right after school, it might be during Falcon 50, it might be on a study break at night, or even right before bed. Regardless, it is necessary to find even five minutes a day to spend for yourself scrolling through social media or reading a new sports article on your phone.

Exercise can also be a great outlet for many to decompress and let off some steam throughout the day. The benefit to working out is that it can be done at your own pace and you can squeeze it into almost any time slot. If you have 20 minutes to kill maybe think about taking your dog on a quick walk or going outside and throwing a frisbee around with a sibling or friend. If you have longer maybe go on a bike ride or a run. Even walking to a friend’s house to catch up can be fun. A small yoga practice or cardio session can easily take 10 minutes. Exercise can also help relieve stress and get you out of the fog of you staying up late the night before trying to find your studying limit.

One small practice throughout the day that can relieve stress and allow you to spend some time reflecting on you is journaling. The great thing about having a journal is that you can journal anywhere. Let’s say that you took the 20 minute exercise break and walked to your neighborhood park. Next time consider bringing your journal and spend some quality time with nature journaling about what you are grateful for, or even what you are stressed about. Another avenue of journaling can include having a brain dump journal.

Brain dump journals are safe places where you can literally just write whatever you have on your mind. You can make to-do lists, wish lists, or even just write about that awkward encounter that you had at lunch that day. Whatever your needs are, journaling is a great way to express them in a healthy way. Plus, journaling gives you a written time stamp of your life. If some day you are feeling down take a quick peek through your journal and remember all the good times and bad times that you have made it through. Looking through your journal can give you the confidence that you can make it through your struggles just like you did in the past.

No matter how you take the time for yourself to just relax and decompress, make sure that you find the time each and every day to do so, even if it is just for five minutes.