Just Breathe

Everybody has those moments where life just gets a little too stressful and hard to handle—it’s normal, it happens, and we cope with it how we can. In the midst of stressful times, it’s easy to get caught up in the little things, but you need to remember to take a break and set aside time for you to breathe.

There are plenty of places on and off campus where you can escape to in a moment of need, so VALLEY has compiled a list of some of the best places to go when you need a little fresh air and a chance to take a break and breathe.

The Arboretum

One of the most peaceful places on campus to visit when you need a break from the stresses of everyday life is the Arboretum. Although it’s somewhat far north, the walk is completely worth it. There are plenty of places to sit down and relax, and every spot is surrounded by beautiful foliage.

Going to the Arboretum really allows for you to enjoy nature and realize that there are so many amazing things about life and our planet. Everyone’s lives are filled with so many stressors and things to do, but taking a moment to go to the Arboretum to absorb the fresh air and experience nature can really help bring your mind away from the anxieties of life.


This location might seem ridiculous because the HUB is always so crowded and can get very stressful for people to navigate, but there are some spots in the HUB, if you need a place to relax in a pinch, that will still be peaceful.

If you’re looking for another location surrounded by nature, there’s a little outside garden seating area on level one, above the food, by the High School Musical stairs, where you can peacefully sit and do work- or just sit and unwind.

There are also some more secluded areas where you can sit and calm yourself down. It seems odd, but there are plenty of secluded corners where you can just sit on the floor by yourself for a bit. There’s an especially great one on the third floor by the stairwell, restrooms, and back elevator.

If you’re on the verge of an anxiety attack or mental breakdown, sometimes breathing exercises can really help. The 4-7-8 breathing exercise can definitely help center your mind through breathing, and it can be done anywhere.

This exercise is amazingly simple and takes little to no time to relax yourself. Start by completely exhaling out your mouth. Then close your mouth and breathe in through your nose for four seconds. Next, hold this breath for seven seconds. Finally, exhale through your mouth for eight seconds. Repeat as many times as you need!

Webster’s Bookstore and Cafe

Last but certainly not least, here’s one of the best places to breathe off campus! Webster’s Bookstore Café provides a wonderful café experience but adds a homey atmosphere comprised of comfy chairs, secret study spots and tons of used books.

There are plenty of places for you to sit and read while sipping on a cup of coffee from their café. They also frequently have live music performances, if you’re looking for another source of entertainment while you relax and enjoy yourself!

These study spots can help you to relax in times of great worry. Tell us your favorite spot to destress by tweeting @ValleyMag.