College can be overwhelming specifically when it’s the first semester of freshmen year, and you’re in a new place with no one you know. As college goes on, it can still be overwhelming when thinking about grades, internships, money, part-time jobs, graduating with a job, etc. There’s also your personal social calendar to worry about along with staying healthy, physically and mentally. There is just too much to worry about as a college student and sometimes it gets to the point where one can’t take it anymore. No need to panic though; simply take some deep breaths and try any of these 20 stress relievers:
1. Play with Play Dough
I promise you that Play Dough is not just for children. From personal experience, it has proven to reduce stress. Using your hands to mold the Play Dough into a fun object or constantly rolling it in and out of a ball will keep your mind and hands occupied. It will keep your mind from thinking about whatever you are stressed out about.
I personally love to read and spend 15-30 minutes every night reading the book I am currently reading to help de-stress myself before I go to bed. However, whenever I am feeling overwhelmingly stressed, I always turn to the book I am currently reading. It really and easily takes your mind off what you are stressed about because when reading I am solely focused on the story and the world the author is portraying.
Writing down what you are stressed about, what you are feeling, why you think you are feeling this way, etc will help to get all those feelings out. Rather than distracting you from the stress, it makes you focus on the stress but sometimes that’s what someone needs. Understanding the stress and feelings you are feeling towards the specific stress factor might help you to breathe and get all the feelings out before they overload.
4. Put Together a Puzzle
A puzzle takes a lot of time and dedication especially if it has over 100 little pieces. This is another trick that will help distract you from the stress because it will keep your mind focused on completing the puzzle. Caution: don’t pick an extremely complicated puzzle because it might cause one to get frustrated and even more stressed.
5. Rewatch a Favorite TV Show
A favorite TV show can easily bring joy and laughter to someone during a distressed time. I know when I am stressed, tired, and upset I put on Friends, The Office, or How I Met Your Mother. I wouldn’t usually put on a dramatic and intense TV show if I am stressed unless I were really invested in the TV show, but watch whatever takes your mind off the stress.
6. Bake a Fun Dessert
I watch a lot of tasty videos and look at lots of recipes specifically for deserts that are different and unique. If you are stressed, take the time to go out and buy the ingredients and bake the dessert. Not only will the baking time take your mind off the stress, but you will have something delicious to eat afterward.
You can spend time outside of class coloring, doodling, and sketching and take it to a wider canvas rather than just the margins of your notebook. I have multiple coloring books that are related to a book series I enjoy. Some pages are simply too aesthetically pleasing to color in, but sometimes I’ll find a page that I really want to color. You can also doodle or sketch out something, maybe even try out a new font. This is a simply, easy, and creative task that will distract you from the stress. This is a popular one of the stress relievers on several lists.
8. Listen to Music
For this trick, you have two choices: listen to music that will lift your spirits or listen to music that speaks to your stress and feelings. Some people might choose the pick me up, but some might want the music to help them feel that they aren’t alone. Music is powerful through the words and instrumentation of the song, and can easily make someone feel better.
9. Watch Favorite Childhood Movie
A favorite childhood movie can make someone who is on the verge of adulthood feel like a little kid again. My favorite movie when I was little was Thumbelina. At the ripe age of 21, I watch it at least once a month and it makes me think about all the times I practically forced my siblings to watch the movie with me. This method can have the potential to make someone more upset by wishing he or she weren’t adulting, but it does have the power to make someone happy.
This is another method where you get your hands and mind involved to distract yourself from the stress. You keep your mind occupied and away from the factor of stress by focusing on the project, on the needles, and on not messing up. If you don’t know how to do either of these things, this might be the perfect time to start. You can spend the time you would be stressing over whatever and focus it toward learning how to knit or crochet. Then once you finish the project, you get a sense of completion and success making you feel more confident in yourself leading to make you feel like you can do and get through anything. This is one of those stress relievers that requires patience.
11. Cat’s Cradle
This is another method such as knitting and crocheting that keeps your hands occupied in order to distract your mind from the factor of stress. You can continually do the basic version of Cat’s Cradle or you can challenge yourself to try more complex versions of it. Either way, you take your mind off the stress.
This is usually not my pick of choice because I find it too calming, which usually gives me more space and time to overthink the stress. However, it is proven to help clear your mind. This is also might help if you are having trouble falling asleep at night due to the stress. This is the best way to manage stress. This is the most difficult one of the stress relievers.
Doing some exercise routines or going for a run will help to reduce your stress. Yoga is another method that isn’t my pick of choice because it is too calming and I can’t seem to be quiet for that long; however, I know many people who enjoy and highly recommend it especially when one is stressed. It helps to regulate your breathing and to exhale all the stress and negative thoughts. Whether you choose to exercise, run, or do some yoga, you will be able to reduce your stress and focus your mind solely on your body. This is one of the most common stress relievers.
14. Paint Your Nails
Taking the time to paint your nails well without getting nail polish on the skin requires constant concentration. You can’t think of anything else in fear of loosing focus and messing up. I know sometimes painting your nails can be a pain and annoying to have to wait for it to dry, but it will distract you from the stress, and then you have freshly painted nails!
15. Video Games
Video games can also take your mind off whatever you are stressing about currently. It will cause you to pay attention to the game and the speed and suspense of the game will keep you on your toes so you won’t have time or space to think of anything else. Plus, it gives you a break from reality.
16. Take Personality Quizzes
You can find a lot of personality quizzes on Buzzfeed, Facebook, or really anywhere online, and even though they sometimes sound ridiculous they are still fascinating and make you curious. Take a bunch of them to figure out what the internet thinks about you and to see how ridiculous some of the answers might be. It will surely distract you and put you in a better mood. This is one of the most fun stress relievers and time killers.
17. Throw Yourself a Fashion Show
Take some of your favorite outfits, specifically the outfits that make you feel good or instantly put you in a better mood, and put together a fashion show for yourself. Change in and out of all the outfits and strut around in your room in them while checking out yourself in the mirror. The power of your favorite outfits will put you in a better mood and increase your confidence as well.
18. Make a List
If you don’t want to distract yourself from the stress and want to focus on getting things done and out of the way, you might want to start by making a list of everything that needs to get done from importance (date and context wise) to not that important. It will help you prioritize what needs to get done first and see if there are any little tasks that you can easily knock off the list. The list also might turn out shorter than you originally thought it to be so it will decrease your stress by showing you it isn’t as bad as you thought.
19. Take a Long Hot Shower/Bath
When I am stressed, my favorite thing to do is stand in the shower and let the hot water erase all my stress and concerns from my body. I simply stand there and enjoy the warmth of the hot shower until I feel like it’s time to step out. If you prefer baths and the fun bath bombs that smell good and make the water look all pretty, you can try that if you have access to a bathtub in college. This is one of those stress relievers that is without fail.
20. Watch Funny YouTube Videos
YouTube as wonderful videos that go viral due to the quality of how funny the video is. Sometimes watching funny cat videos of cats doing weird stuff or running into walls instantly makes me feel better. Or re-watching the classic “Charlie Bit My Finger!” is fun to re-watch every once in awhile. Everyone has their own favorite YouTube videos that can instantly make their day better. The video will take your mind away from the stress by focusing on the context of the video. You might begin to scroll through suggested or similar videos continuing to distract you from the stress. This is one of the best stress relievers.
Everyone in college experiences stress in their life due to multiple different reasons, and everyone handles stress differently. It is up to you to figure out what works best for you and how you can easily manage your stress so you don’t experience too many “I just can’t” moments in a short amount of time. You can also always talk to an RA or counselor if it really gets much, but don’t keep it buried deep down. That has only proven to worsen and increase stress.
Let us know what you think about these stress relievers in the comments below!
Featured Image Source: weheartit.com
Hey everybody! I am a junior studying English Writing while double minoring in Creative Writing and Music. I love to read, write, ski, travel, sail, and sing. I spend the majority of my time with my family and friends, but my "me" time consists of lots of reading and writing. I hope to one day be a published author and possibly work for a publishing house as an editorial assistant because who doesn't want to read for a living! That being said, I prefer to read science fiction & fantasy, romance, and historical fiction; and I enjoy reading about fairytales, folklore, and myths. Some of my favorite series are The Selection series by Kiera Cass, Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling, and the Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer.