Hello I'm George, a first year Geography student from Kent. I enjoy most things creative and enjoy the natural world. I see writing as an extension of the things I enjoy and hope that comes across in the content I…
Giving yourself time away from your studies is an important part of managing your stress levels. Here are three creative ideas to help you do this!
Spend time on something you enjoy
Your hobbies are an important tool in caring for your mental well-being. Stress can be thought of as a jug – the more stress you let build up, the more compromised your ability to deal with extra things added to the jug is. By setting time away from the things stressing you out and doing something completely different, you can empty the jug and reduce your stress levels. By doing something that you enjoy, such as painting or writing, you can escape from the stress. Allowing yourself time to completely disappear in something you are doing will leave your mind feeling fresh when you do decide to return to the stressful thing. It is important to have a balance so that you aren’t completely consumed by any negative thoughts or pressure you may be facing.
Write down your thoughts
Often stress builds up because we are excessively thinking about a problem. Try writing down a list or journaling everything that makes you feel worried or anxious, whether that is a deadline, friendship troubles, or something else. Writing it down might help you better arrange your thoughts. By having a visual representation of the problem, you can face it proactively and get it out of your head. You can then make decisions on different solutions, maybe mind mapping around the original thought. Ordering your worries in this way could help to calm any anxiety you might be feeling! Treat this almost like a recycling activity – you first jot down your thought then re-evaluate how you’ll tackle it positively. Being mindful of when things are getting too much and actively trying to help yourself is key in relieving a build-up of stress.
House plants have been found to positively impact mental health. Naturally, with any plant comes a need for it to be nurtured and looked after. This act of making time to either water or feed your house plant gives you time to switch your attention. The maintenance of a plant can also act as an analogy for your own stress – when a house plant experiences a stressor it will physically indicate what it needs (e.g. wilting or browning). Although it might be harder to notice, we also show signs of stress and need to be cared for too. Just seeing the plant helps you connect to nature, which is also thought to improve mental wellbeing. You might even want to journal the progress of the plant as an engaging activity you can do as a release. House plant care can be an excuse for you to take a quick break, focus on caring for yourself and help grow something rewarding at the same time!
Hopefully, you can try implementing these as new management strategies for when you feel overly stressed or begin to feel like everything is just getting too much.