Wanna know the biggest secret that successful students are hiding from everyone? They DON’T do work 24/7. Insane, right? We all have our share of difficult days and mountains of homework, but don’t forget to take some time to chill and think about something other than school work. Relaxation is a crucial part of taking care of ourselves, and if we skip this step then it won’t be long before our academics start to slip. Currently, I have an 18-credit schedule, school clubs that I’m part of, an internship (and I may be getting a second one this semester! Fingers crossed for me!), a blog (obviously), and friends and family to keep up with. And, trust me, I make sure I make some time to lounge around better than any house cat. We all have very different ways of relaxing, but the most important part of it is making sure that during this magical time, your mind is relaxed and you aren’t concerned with your obligations.
Don’t expect to have a jacuzzi at your disposal with scented candles, bath bombs, and flower petals in your dorm room (one of those things isn’t even allowed in college dorms!) but there are still some easy ways that you can chill and have some time to yourself.
1. Give yourself a manicure.
I’m a huge fan of nail art and more often than not, I can be found in my dorm room painting my nails while I catch up on my favorite shows on Netflix. You’ll have to block out at least an hour and a half to do your nails because it takes time for them to dry. And if you’re trying to do a fancy design, you’ll need more time, which means you can chill for much longer. It’s also fun to scroll through Pinterest to look for cute designs to do, so this is another great excuse to hop onto Pinterest.
2. Read a good book.
I used to be able to read a book a day but for a while, I stopped when things got a bit crazy with school work. This year, I really picked reading back up and it’s one of my favorite ways to relax. I like to read for an hour before I start my assignments and I also save it as the last thing I do at night before going to bed instead of scrolling through my phone. Books are just a nice way to escape your world and live in someone else’s for a few hours. This is a good way to give your undivided attention to something not school and adult life-related. I highly recommend “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,” by Jenny Han. It’s what I’m currently reading and it’s such a good book! What book are you obsessing over right now? Let me know in the comments!
3. Create DIY face masks.
I live for DIY! I find so many cute projects on Pinterest and I can’t help but save them all to try out later. If you collected any great recipes for masks from Pinterest, now’s a great time to test them out. You can also scroll through the internet and watch TV while you wait for your mask to dry. It’s a great way to treat yo’self while you treat yo skin. Just make sure that the ingredients you use in the face masks aren’t harmful to your skin!
Related: DIY Cupcake Bath Bombs
4. Soak your feet in hot water and read a magazine.
It’s like having a spa day in the comfort of your dorm room! Sure, you’ll need a large enough container to hold the hot water, and a bit of space but, honestly, I’m extra enough that I would totally do this! Hell, I would buy a container JUST to do this. I used to sometimes soak my hands in really warm water to soften my nails just before I cut them and it was SO relaxing. Hot water just has this calming effect against the skin and it feels AMAZING. You can even plan a full on pedicure day! If you ~really~ want to do this right, you can invest in some scented oil and rose petals and add them to your foot soak. Don’t forget the magazine!
5. Bake delicious goodies.
This is yet another excuse to scroll through Pinterest for hours. This requires a bit of planning if you don’t already have all the ingredients at your disposal, but it’s totally worth it! Baking has been a hobby of mine since I was in middle school and I discovered that I make some seriously kickass fudge brownies. You can easily turn this activity into a girls’ night thing if you wanted to. My suite mate and I plan to bake cookies in our kitchen and share them with our entire floor.
6. Workout at the gym.
This isn’t exactly a creative suggestion since you’ve probably seen this idea in any article or blog post related to relaxing in college, but nevertheless, it’s worth mentioning. Working out doesn’t always mean running on the treadmill or doing squats on a mat; sign up for a fitness class at your college recreation center. My personal favorites are Zumba and Zumba toning. Challenge yourself to try every fitness class at least once. If it’s too cold to walk to the gym, you can bring the fitness to your dorm room, well, minus the treadmill… Invest in a yoga mat so you can easily practice poses, squats, pushups and other things.
7. Practice your hobbies.
We can probably all name at least two things that we used to do all the time when we were in high school but stopped having time for when we got to college. Do that. Pick it back up. You don’t necessarily have to start a new hobby in your free time. This way, you don’t have to worry about potentially not enjoying what you try. I used to make friendship bracelets every single day when I was in high school. I’d sit in front of the TV and do these complicated designs. I hear so many people talk about the things they used to do when they were in high school but stopped after coming to college. If you miss it, then use your alone time to get back on it.
8. Go to a local event by yourself.
Literally just take yourself on a date. I don’t do too many things by myself because I’m very used to always going out with a friend, but this is something I’d like to start trying out. I think that this is a good way to enjoy what you want to enjoy because you won’t have to go by anyone else’s schedule and you won’t have to try to accommodate for anyone but yourself. If this isn’t something you’re used to, start off by looking for events happening in your school’s area.
9. Start a journal.
Ever have something on your mind that you just can’t tell anyone else for whatever reason? Write those thoughts down in a journal! It’s probably better than passive aggressively writing a social media status about it. Plus, you’ll be getting it off your chest without stirring up any drama. I’m sorry, I’m making this sound like journaling is exclusively for venting about things that annoy you. It’s not. Journaling is perfect for simply talking about what happened during the day. You can really add memories to your journal by pasting photographs in there. When I studied abroad, I kept a daily journal and bought postcards that I taped to the pages. You can also start a scrapbook project during your chill time. I think I definitely regret not starting a scrapbook when I started college, but I guess it’s never too late to start one!
10. Go for a walk.
I know a lot of people enjoy taking long walks by themselves. It’s very relaxing because you can just go at your own pace and not worry about reaching a particular destination. Just walk for as long as you feel like you need to. If you’re feeling particularly full of energy, go for a jog instead.
What’s your favorite way to unwind?