Mid-semester stress relief
Visit the Health Education Office for some relaxation tips and quiet tim
Published: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 22:10
Seven weeks are left in the semester, putting the UConn in prime midterm season. However, a 10-minute stop at the Health Education Office can help lower unbearable stress levels.
Although Wilson 125 has information and handouts for sexuality, wellness and environmentally friendly initiatives, they are well known for their assistance with stress management. Most students may know this room exists, but only a select few seem to make an appearance.
“The Health Education Office is available, yet underused,” said David Rogers, a fifth-semester political science and philosophy major, who acts as an undergraduate student worker. “We wish more students would take advantage of all we offer.”
“The pressure to succeed is constant; it feels like I have four tests a week and I need to ace them all,” said Jesseba Fernando, a third-semester biology major.
We have all felt this. As college students, we have been lectured on stress management a thousand times, but somehow we are still extremely susceptible to it. A simple review of the basics might set in this time:
“Stress occurs when pressure exceeds your perceived ability to cope,” according to Stephen Palmer, via the Health Education’s website. Stress is a real pressure that comes from the mind, which can lead to increase in heart rate, breathing, insomnia, backaches, headaches, high blood pressure and even coronary heart disease. Suddenly, this feels like the end of a drug commercial, listing off side effects. But these can all be managed with proper techniques and assistance, easily accessible at the Health Education Office.
Wilson 125’s best asset might be its Relaxation Station. A simple circle of comfortable chairs calls invitingly to overworked, exhausted and near brain-dead students. Now is your chance: sit in one. Do not play on your phone or think about school; just sit. Five minutes later, this simple activity has changed that daunting seven-page paper into an achievable goal.
Sitting silently can be complemented with simple meditation, adds the staff at Health Education. In your head, make a list of the positives. It can be of the week, about yourself or even what you’ll do during Thanksgiving break. This puts school into perspective and grants a positive outlook. Plus, it can be done anywhere, anytime.
Maybe meditation does not work for you because you are a gym junkie. The endorphins produced from working out have been proven to offset the impact of stress. So a 30-minute run will do more for you than get a good sweat, it will also help reactivate the brain. However, if you are like me, hours at the gym are used as an excuse instead of starting the ever-increasing pile of homework. Some added time management might help to reduce stress and still fit in a good workout.
Also available at the Health Education Office are packs of differing varieties. Aromatherapy, Massage 101, Herbal Pillows and Relaxation packages are obtainable on request. They are filled with seasonal goodies and can differ by pack. For instance, the Relax packs come with a pamphlet of information, bubble wrap and a choice of hot chocolate, tea or lotion.
The Health Education Office also offers free MP3 Relaxation downloads online, via their website. Three options are available, ranging from five to 15 minutes. While on their website, make sure to check out the overflow of information it contains.
The minutes count down on the deadline for this article, and ironically enough I have become stressed about stress management. Guess it’s time to follow some of my own advice.