5 Healthy Ways to Destress When StudyingPosted on
When your study is in full swing and you have assessments and big projects that you are about to begin, it can be hard to manage your stress. But you don’t have to let stress get the better of you or your academic performance.
Try these 5 unique, quick, and simple strategies to fight off the stress in a healthy way and reinvigorate your study.
1. Embrace your stress
Though it sounds counterintuitive, one of the best ways to alleviate stress is to embrace it, says psychologist Kelly McGonigal1.
If you can reframe your stress as a challenge to overcome rather than looking at it as an unsolvable problem, you’ll find it much easier to manage.
Ask yourself about the source of your stress and what you can learn from it. For example, if you discover that you have anxiety because you want to do well but fear failure, you could try and channel your great desire to achieve as a positive motivator. By being optimistic, you can use stress as a way to learn and grow.
2. Connect with green spaces
Research about the link between plants and wellbeing showed that people with plants in their offices reduced their stress levels and negative feelings by 30 to 60%. Even one plant in your study space can make a difference.
Since exercise is a natural stress-reducer, going for a morning jog in the park reinvigorate you and reduce your stress. Just a ten-minute walk in a green space has been shown to reduce blood pressure and stress hormone levels. If you can’t get outside, invest in plants for your home or put your desk near a window that looks out on trees.
3. Eat stress-reducing foods
While it may be tempting to soothe your anxieties by eating a tub of ice cream, a better plan is to keep your blood sugar balanced is by eating healthy snacks2. When our brain doesn’t have the proper nourishment it needs it won’t function at its optimum level and our stress hormones rise.
Bananas are high in potassium, which regulates blood pressure and protects our bodies from the negative health effects of stress. Avocados, cashews, berries, and chocolate are also good choices according to health experts.
For an even greater calming effect, eat your snack mindfully. Pay attention to its taste, texture, and scent as you eat. By stepping outside of yourself and putting yourself in the moment, you’ll feel more relaxed and clear-headed.
4. Melt stress with music and videos
Listening to music has long been proven to help with relaxation3. In one study, Malaysian researchers found that subjects who listened to music that played at 60 beats per minute felt increased physical relaxation and reduced feelings of stress. This is common in slow classical music.
While staring at a computer screen for hours has been shown to increase stress, certain media can help you feel better if you engage in small doses. Whether you watch a funny viral video online (yes, this includes cute cat videos), or share a laugh with your friends, laughter increases endorphins, or as we call them, the ‘feel-good’ chemicals in your brain, which reduce stress.
5. Organise your study area
If your study area is cluttered then this will increase your levels of stress. Neuroscience researchers determined that clutter reduces our ability to focus and process information, which makes us frustrated and agitated. You’ll reduce your stress levels and make it easier to study by organising your study space.
Tidy your desk, remove all unnecessary papers and books so you have plenty of space around you.
Focus on a single task or subject at a time and only have the books or reading materials required for this task in your study area. You’ll be amazed at how your levels of stress reduce when you have a tidy study space.