The coronavirus pandemic has taught us many lessons, but the most notable one remains the need for self-care. The pandemic’s uncertainty, combined with a widespread transition to online classes, has introduced tons of challenges in the education sector. Recent studies have warned that the pandemic not only affects students’ mental and physical health but can also diminish academic performance. One study, for instance, found that close to 20% of college students struggle to keep up with classes because they cannot access the needed technology.
Even before the pandemic, most college students found themselves spending countless late nights working on assignments and preparing for tests. In the struggle to keep up with the hectic nature of higher education, self-care tends to suffer. During these challenging times, we all need to adapt. Here are some tips on how to take care of yourself and thrive as a college student.
Always Prioritize Your Sleep
Research has established that sleep is critical to physical and mental health and the effective functioning of the immune system. It promotes mental health by helping to fight stress, anxiety, and depression. Even before the pandemic, thousands of students struggled with sleep problems, as some chose to stay up doing assignments or partying. Understand that you can always hire a professional essay writer to work on your academic projects.
With increased anxiety due to the pandemic, there is a definite effect on our mental health and sleep habits. Research shows that the human brain needs at least seven hours of sleep each night to function optimally, and this can only be obtained by sticking to good sleep hygiene practices.
The main point to remember is that ample sleep supports your immune system, reducing your risk of infection. This means that getting a good night’s sleep can improve the health outcomes for people fighting the virus. On the other end of the spectrum, sleep deprivation can weaken your immune system and make you more susceptible to infections.
Eat Healthy and Balanced Meals
Another self-care tip for college students revolves around meals. Evidence shows that students can learn more effectively when they are well-nourished. In other words, eating healthy meals is connected to better grades, higher productivity, and faster information processing. Healthy nutrition also boosts a person’s immune system and helps fight infections.
Students are encouraged to prefer meals rich in protein, healthy fats, fiber, and vitamins. This way, they can have the energy they need to keep up with hectic schedules. Also, make sure to include fruits and vegetables in your meals. Avoid skipping breakfast and try to take at least six glasses of water each day.
Engage in Regular Exercise
Physical activity is a crucial component of healthy living for college students. According to research, regular exercise helps students reduce stress levels and maintain healthy body weights. In other words, being active is good for your mental and physical health.
Fortunately, most colleges give students free access to gym and exercise facilities. Other than the gym, students can participate in scores of different fitness activities, including morning walks, yoga, biking, running, and hiking. You can also take the stairs on your way to class.
Schedule Time to Rest in Your Routine
With so much work to do in college, many students fail to recognize the significance of rest. According to research, regular breaks throughout a school day serve more than just being downtime for students. Breaks allow learners to refuel and increase their level of productivity.
Most people struggle to remain focused and motivated for prolonged periods. In any case, evidence shows that brains don’t just stay idle during breaks. Instead, they work hard to process memories and internalize concepts. Scheduling breaks also boost students’ neural activity and improve learning outcomes.
Socialize and Reach Out for Support
There is no denying that social support is a crucial ingredient for the success of any college student. We live during uncertain times, and stressors abound in the campus environment. For most students, attending college can be both exciting and frightening. On the one hand, you are thrilled at the idea of being on your own and enjoying your newfound independence. On the other, you are scared about starting a new chapter in your life away from family and friends.
This article summarizes helpful self-care tips for college students. To successfully navigate campus life, you will need to form supportive relationships, eat healthy meals, get enough sleep, and maintain a routine. Also, having a network of friends, loved ones, acquaintances, and mentors you can turn to when facing challenges can positively influence your academic performance and overall wellbeing. Other than reaching out to your friends and maintaining connections with family, consider joining campus organizations.
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