College life can be overwhelming. There may be days when you feel like you are constantly running around and have no time to relax. However, I’m sure you know by now just how important self care is. So, what do you do when you feel as if there isn’t enough time in the day to handle all of your responsibilities and take care of yourself?
Below is a list of simple and quick self-care ideas that can help you to have a few minutes of “you” time during the day.
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1. Do a five- or ten-minute meditation
Ten minutes can seem like a long time, especially if you feel like you already don’t have enough hours in the day. However, in the grand scheme of things, those ten minutes will not make or break your productivity and are worth spending on yourself.
We’ve already talked about the benefits of meditation for college students, but if you haven’t tried it yet, give it a shot! Try doing a short, guided meditation to check in with your body. It can help you to identify any stressors in your life and process them as well as help you relax.
2. Go to bed a few minutes early
You may be used to your nightly routine of staying up late doing homework, followed by playing on your phone until you fall asleep BUT try to change it up to create more “you” time. Go to bed a few minutes earlier or put the phone down before you’re fully tired. Take time to enjoy your own company, to evaluate how your day went, and to think about your goals for tomorrow.
3. Wake up a few minutes early
If you tend to be a morning person, try waking up a few minutes early to check in with yourself. It doesn’t have to be too early of course — just a couple of minutes will do the trick. Use the time to focus on what you want and how you’re feeling. You’ll be doing something good for yourself and starting your day off on a positive note.
4. Do something you find fulfilling
Try doing something that feels like a minor accomplishment to you. This could be something as easy as doing a face or hair mask, watching a movie, or starting the book that’s been on your shelf for months, or something more challenging like cleaning your room, cooking a good meal, or doing an art project. This is a time to focus on yourself by doing something that you find rewarding and relaxing.
5. Walk places
Instead of making your morning drive to school, try walking (so long as you live a reasonable distance away). Or just walk around your campus or city when you have a few minutes of free time. When you walk, you are getting your exercise and you have plenty of time to spend with yourself. You can take this time to clear your head and focus on how your body feels.
6. Do your homework when you first get home
After a long day at school, the last thing you want to do is more work. However, if you want to have more time to yourself, try doing your homework as soon as you get home. This way, it will be done by the time you’re ready to settle in for the night which means you’ll have more stress-free time to focus on yourself before the evening ends.
Above all else, remember to breathe. Breathe in through your nose for four seconds, hold for seven, and exhale through your mouth for eight seconds. This will help you to relax and calm down throughout the day. Use it to refocus your attention on a new activity or unwind. It may sound simple but, taking some time to just breathe will help you to focus on yourself and your body.
Finding time for yourself is important in order to feel like a sane human being. Take a few minutes throughout your day to do a mental check in with yourself. Each day it may vary; you may have enough time to do a special activity like a face mask and a bath or you may only have enough time to remember to breathe. No matter what you do, taking the time to focus on yourself can be rewarding and is well worth doing.