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The Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders

Take Care: 18 self-care tips for 2018

in Opinion/Our Voices/Showcase by

Now that a new semester has begun some students are already feeling the stress and burden of going to school. Sometimes, when things get hectic in our lives we forget to take a step back and just focus on ourselves. In light of the new year, here are 18 tips to improve your self-care in the year of 2018.

Do some light yoga or meditation:

If you start to feel yourself getting overwhelmed or just caught up in life, try to take five or ten minutes out of your day to do a couple of your favorite yoga poses. Sometimes getting your body and mind back on the same page can help you move forward. If yoga poses aren’t your thing, meditation–guided or not–is a great way to breathe and focus on the task at hand. Meditation can also help with aging of the brain and so much more look at this article for details 

Workout:

Endorphins make you feel happier and more energetic. Working out, especially in the morning, is a great way to start the day off strong. You feel accomplished, confident, and more focused. Even though working out sometimes sounds dreadful, at the end you will feel better, and it will help clear your mind and prepare you for the day to come. Working out releases those endorphins which interact with receptors in your brain which make you feel more positive.

Sleep:

You need sleep to function. Without sleep, it is easier to stress out and tasks that used to be easy become hard. It may be hard to make time for sleep when you have homework, projects, and tests. Sometimes, all you need to do to get centered and feel less stressed is push that work to the side and get a full eight to ten hours of sleep. Studies have shown that getting proper sleep can help with memory and our mood. To read more about how sleep benefits you, read this information from Harvard.

Essential oils:

You can find that these smell-goods can be essential to your self-care. If you find yourself having a hard time relaxing or going to sleep, try to use some essential oils like lavender or peppermint. You can easily put some of the oil mixed with water in a spray bottle and put the scent on your pillow, around your room, or study area. The scent can help relax you or energize you, depending on the scent.

Go for a walk or run alone:

Sometimes the best thing you can do is to just take a step back from your stress and going take time to be alone. On a walk or run, you get a change of environment, which can help you to think through things that are troubling you.

Write it out:

If you are having trouble thinking through your thoughts, and you feel like you can’t really talk to anyone, just write it out. The paper will be there for you through your tears, anger, and confusion. You don’t have to make this a daily habit, but when you are feeling like you need to center yourself just try it out – you can’t go wrong!

Unplug:

Let go of social media, calling, and texting with everyone for a little bit. With all of the technology that we are surrounded by in our daily life, we tend to get more caught up in how cute someone’s top is than that English essay that is due tomorrow or whatever else may be going on in your personal life. Some easy ways to do this is to put your phone on do not disturb or turn it off, you can give it to a trusting friend or family member, and it can even be just as simple as putting it in a different room for a while.

Write down things that you have accomplished or want to accomplish:

You have accomplished a lot more than you realize. Writing everything out can help motivate you to keep moving forward. Writing out thoughts like your dream college or dream car can also help you to keep chugging along while also stepping back for a moment and realize the things that you have done and want to eventually get done. At ARS, there are a lot of goal-oriented students, so this activity is a great motivator for people like us.

Clean / Declutter:

Taking time out of your day or week to just clean up your room and/or study area can help you be more productive. Think about how nice it is when a classroom at school is beautifully organized and well kept, and how it is easier to work. Well, if your at-home environment is like that, it will be nicer to come home to. Additionally, you will not have to worry about parents telling you to clean your room.

Craft:

One of the best things you can do is to get lost in a painting, crochet project, or anything DIY. Taking time and focusing your attention on small details is a great way to take care of yourself.

Talk it out:

We can all get caught up in our heads sometimes with all of our thoughts moving at lightning-fast speeds. Talking your ideas out with someone you trust will help to put your mind back in order and grasp what you truly need to do.

Laugh:

Laughter is the best medicine. Take some time out of your day to laugh with your friends, read a funny book, or watch some funny animal videos. Laughing will help relieve you of stress and clear your head. Studies have shown that laughter chills out your stress responses. Read more about this from Mayo Clinic.

Reflect:

Reflect on what you are grateful for. Maybe someone complimented your new haircut, or how your eyeliner was beautifully done. Or list things like “I am grateful that my mom cooked something yummy last night,” or “I am grateful that I have friends that make me laugh.”  

Listen to music:

Drop everything and pay attention to the lyrics and the melodies. This can be, in some ways, a form of meditation.

Read a book for fun:

We all have books that we need to read for English, but this book will be just for you. Try to take time out of the day, like on the bus or car ride to school or right before bed, to transport yourself into the world that the author has created for you.

Do a puzzle:

Give your mind a little workout and focus on something other than what you need to do. This can be as simple as doing a crossword or Sudoku puzzle. Or you can even bust out an actual jigsaw puzzle and try to put together all of those tiny pieces together to make a beautiful picture.

Do something nostalgic:

Watch your childhood favorite movie or TV show, or maybe try to perfect your grandmother’s cookie recipe. Transport yourself to a time of happiness. This will help you take a step back and focus on you.

You just did one:

If you have made it to the end of this, you have already done something for yourself by looking at all of the pretty pictures while scrolling through. Looking at pictures of your favorite things or places is a great way to destress and smile.

 

Lily will spare no details when it comes to her knitting, and she is just as meticulous with her writing and editing. When she's not working out the logistics and minute kinks of the Polaris Press, this water baby is swimming freestyle for the ARS Varsity Swim team or exercising her flair for the dramatics in ARS’ annual one-act play. Her essential items include Cold-Brew Coffee, classic oldies music, and of course, a pen and paper. She is excited to be a part of the Journalism community for the second year in a row, and as of this fall a member of the editing team.

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