College is stressful and there can be a lot of pressure to do well. In addition, many college students have part time jobs or other activities that they participate in. College students can face a lot of mental health problems including depression and anxiety. However, there are some things to keep in mind that can help to improve your overall mental health and wellbeing and make college a more positive experience.
Do Not Be Afraid to Seek Help
There is still a stigma that surrounds mental health, but therapy can be beneficial for college students. Therapy can help you manage your stress and anxiety and change your routine to address time management. In addition, a therapist can help you identify negative thought patterns and help you learn to change them into positive ones.
You can actually find a therapist that you can do from the comfort of your dorm, apartment, or house at BetterHelp. This is great because it is easier to fit into your busy college schedule and you do not have to leave your home at all.
Organize Your Schedule
New college students may find that its hard to organize their routine with classes at different times and no parental structure. However, even those who have been in college for a while sometimes have a hard time keeping an organized schedule. There are a lot of distractions to schoolwork and other important responsibilities.
It is good to stay on a routine. Even if you do not have class every day of the week, try to wake up at the same time each day. You can also try to plan ahead and set activities after tests and projects. Try to stay caught up on your studying so you do not have to cram the day before a test. If you study for 15 minutes after each class, then you will likely never need to study for as long as you would have otherwise.
Make a Study Area
Distractions are everywhere in college and it can be difficult to stay on task. Make a place that is quiet and comfortable where you can go to focus on your work. This may not even be at home if you have a distracting or loud roommate. The library is obviously a common place for studying, but some people even like to study in the park or at a coffeehouse.
Exercise is a great way to easily improve your overall mental health and wellbeing. It can help you fight stress and anxiety and give you a boost in mood. It may be hard to feel like you have the time to exercise much, but if you can fit short work outs into your weekly routine you may find that you feel much better. This can actually help to encourage you to exercise more as well. If you do not like working out at the gym, try to take a job or play football, basketball, or ultimate frisbee with your friends and neighbors. You can also opt to walk to class more often instead of taking the bus or driving.
College can promote unhealthy eating in a couple of ways. First, sometimes college students will eat at odd hours because of classes, social activities, and abnormal sleeping patterns. Second, fast food and other unhealthy foods can be easy to get and affordable even for a college student. However, eating healthy foods can help to make you feel good and improve your mental health. Try to keep your dorm or apartment stocked with healthy foods like whole grains, fruits, lean proteins, and vegetables. Try to work these healthy foods into your routine every day.
Get Restful Sleep
In college, there is always something to do. In addition, many colleges students’ study for tests all night up until they have to leave for the class. Stress, parties, and busy schedules can impact sleep patterns and the quality of sleep. Try to remember to get restful sleep every night. Creating a routine can go a long way towards quality sleep. You may also want to avoid screen time on computers or phones close to bedtime.
You may also want to find a stress relief technique that works for you. Some people like to get a positive hobby that they care about. You could try to learn guitar or take singing lessons or take up photography. You may also want to try mindfulness meditation or yoga. Most college campuses have clubs and classes for these types of activities.
When students leave for college, they often leave all of their existing friends behind. However, it is important to have a support system. If you have not made new friends or at least close ones, then you may feel lonely or isolated. Try to stay connected to the people at home. This means that you should talk with your family and high school friends often. Invite them to campus to spend the weekend or get on a Zoom call to chat.
Grow Your Support System
Colleges have tons of groups, clubs, and classes for you to get involved in. This makes it one of the easiest places to meet other people who share the same interests as you do. Try going to a club meeting and see if you like it or take an extracurricular class one semester. You can find people at the student center as well.
Your mental health is important, and it is crucial that you do not forego your wellbeing to study or party. Try to lead a healthy lifestyle by getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, and eating healthy foods. You should also try to grow your support system and stay connected to your friends and family back home. If you do not already have a personal way to relieve stress, try to find a hobby or learn mindfulness mediation. Finally, stay organized and never be afraid to seek help if you feel like you need it.