By: Gabriella Villacis, University of Maryland Health Center, Peer Educator
Alright guys, Thanksgiving break is right around the corner! It’s a time to finally take a break from the hectic semester and just relax. But, Thanksgiving can also be a stressful time filled with trying to fit in as many family and friend visits in a matter of four days and maybe even squeeze in a little Black Friday shopping.
In the midst of all the chaos, travelling, and turkey (or tofurkey) eating, try and remember the reason for the season. This is a great time of year to assess our personal wellness and take a step back from the stress of college life.
Here are a few tips on how to stay well and remember the importance of being thankful this season.
Manage stress. The semester is starting to wind down and before you know it winter break will be here. That means papers, final projects, and more exams than any of us want to think about. Don’t let this overwhelm you. Thanksgiving is a time for us to be grateful and enjoy ourselves, not stress out about all the work we have to do.
Tip: Manage your time wisely! Take a few minutes to read those syllabi we all got back in September and write down when all your projects are due and when your exams are scheduled. Prioritize what work you need to get down before Thanksgiving break and what can wait until after. Schedule in some down time to relax and rejuvenate.
Eat healthy. Let’s face it, many of us are pumped for some home-cooked meals over Thanksgiving break, or maybe meeting friends at our favorite hometown restaurants. Some of these food options may not be the healthiest.
Tip: Don’t be afraid to indulge a little. Wellness is all about maintaining a healthy balance. Remember to be thankful for the delicious food that you have and don’t beat yourself up over having that piece of pie.
Catch up on sleep. Chances are, you’ve racked up a pretty hefty sleep debt by this point in the semester.
Tip: Take this time to get some extra sleep. If you haven’t been getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night recently, spend a little extra time snoozing while you are home.
Cope with the tough questions. We have all experienced it – the not-so-fun-game of 20 questions: How’s school? What classes are you taking? What are you planning to do after college? For some of us, these decisions are right down the road, and some of us are just taking it one day at a time.
Tip: Don’t get too worked up about it. Be thankful that we have the opportunity to have such a great education and relatives that care. Wellness is a journey and our career path is just one part of it. If you are having difficulty choosing a major or defining your career path, make use of the resources available at the University Career Center & The President’s Promise.
Share with us! How will you take advantage of Thanksgiving break to enhance your personal sense of wellbeing?