The semester is now in full swing, and the assignments are starting to roll in. It can be easy to get overwhelmed when professors are talking a mile a minute about all the things you need to get done this semester. If you find yourself ready to yank your hair out in class, take a deep breath; Valley’s got your back.
Here are a few things you can do while you’re sitting in class to lower your stress levels and get your mind back on track:
Junior Kinesiology major Ashley Lutter, intern for Exercise Is Medicine on campus and Professional Development Chair of the Kinesiology club, says to start your de-stressing before you even step in the classroom.
“Get some light exercise by walking to class instead of taking the bus,” says Lutter. “Physical activity is a great way to reduce anxiety.”
She also recommends getting there a few minutes early so you can pick your seat and get situated before class starts.
When you start to feel stressed during class, try this quick anxiety-reducing exercise: sit up straight and stay as still as possible while focusing on a certain point in the room. Count backwards from ten a few times until you start to feel yourself relax.
“Counting helps to clear your mind by forcing you to focus on something besides the anxiety you are feeling,” Lutter says. “You won’t be thinking about next week’s bio exam when you’re focusing on which number comes before eight.”
Believe it or not, colors can actually have major effects on anxiety levels. If you know you have a stressful week ahead of you, try wearing something blue. Looking at a soft shade of blue can actually slow your heart rate and lower your blood pressure, making you feel very calm.
The easiest and most simple technique for reducing stress in class is to control your breathing. Try breathing deeply and focusing on drawing breaths from your stomach. A few deep breaths should make you feel much more relaxed.
Another quick and easy fix is chewing gum. Carry a pack with you and pop a piece in when you’re feeling antsy. You don’t have to chew all the time – 10 or 15 minutes should do the trick.
Pick and choose from these tips when you feel the need, and you should find that your semester goes a lot more smoothly.
Have your own tips that have helped you to de-stress during class? Comment below and let us know what you recommend!
Photo by Natalie Runnerstrom