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Relaxing in the Rush: How students can take a break despite the whirlwind semester.

Without fall free days this year, the weight of the end of the semester feels especially heavy. There are papers upon exams upon projects and presentations, plus homework, classes, and extracurriculars on top of all of that. Many of you have been hard at work for weeks on end, and are likely feeling that you
need to take a break or relax but aren’t sure how.

Fortunately, there are some easy ways to kick back and get some rest at the end of the semester.
This first suggestion may not feel relaxing at first, but the result is well worth it. Take time to tidy up your living and study space. Make your bed, wash your dishes, do your laundry, reorganize your desk, sanitize anything that you use often, and maybe even vacuum. While it may seem like a lot of work, the end product of a clean room leads to a brighter mind-set that can motivate you to get work done when you’re ready to. The process of tidying up and cleaning can be relaxing as well. Turn on some music, an audio book a podcast, call a relative or a friend, pray, or just let your thoughts run free as you clean to make the tasks go by quicker and feel more fun.

If your space is already neat and orderly, try setting aside all technology for an hour or a few hours. With so many assignments, classes, and meetings taking place online and the increasing amount of time spent on social media to stay connected with friends, family, and what’s going on in the world, it’s easy to associate your computer or phone with stress or worry, even if it can be a good tool for distraction most of the time. It’s important to not just take a break from work when you need it, but to also take a break from the tools and space you use to get that work done. Make a conscious effort to take a walk without listening to music or talking on the phone. Journal or create something with pen and paper. Even if it’s not for long, disconnecting from the internet may prove to be beneficial for your mental health and prepare you better for when work does need to get done.

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