So, at this time of the year, everyone seems to be going through a lot of stress - and by "everyone," I mean, "anyone who has any contact with people who are in schools of any kind." Still, stress can hit you at any time of the year, whether it's right before Christmas, or when you've let all those little chores pile up, or when omigod all those bills are due tomorrow. When you feel like you're being pulled in a million directions, it's easy to want to murder everyone or plan an elaborate escape that involves faking your own death, but if you're looking to survive without a criminal record, check out these tips for keeping yourself sane!
1.) Get some sleep. When you're worried about all the things you have to do, it's easy to think you'll get more done if you stay up way late at night. If you've blown off an entire semester of daily journals, you might not be able to avoid that all-nighter, but in more normal situations studies have shown us that getting sleep makes us far more productive during our waking hours. Give yourself permission to catch some zzzzs!
2.) Eat regular, balanced meals. When people get super stressed out, they have a tendency to eat way too much of the wrong kind of thing (for example, eating an entire pizza and drinking 2 liters of Mountain Dew while writing a 20 page paper) or none of any kind of thing (for example, drinking 2 pots of coffee and that's it). Your body needs fuel to function, so go for salads, whole grains and lean proteins, which will keep you going long and strong!
3.) Exercise. There's stress that's healthy, and then there's stress that makes you jump up and down for no reason, have 4 heart attacks and scream at your dog because he doesn't understand the political and sociological importance of red light cameras in the context of Plato's writings. A little exercise (we're talking, like, 20 mins!) can help keep you alert for longer, but also releases endorphins that enable you to handle your stress without having a psychotic episode.
4.) Stay positive. You can do it you can do it you can do it! It's easy to get totally thrown by the pile of things you have demanding your attention OMIGODRIGHTNOW, but thinking about all the horrible ways you could die is not the best way to get things done. Stay positive with yourself, do everything you can, make a to-do list to check things off of, and CHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRGGGGEEE!!!!!11!
5.) Keep checking things off your to-do list. One reaction to stress is a little thing I like to call ULTIMATE DENIAL, which results in you "accomplishing" things like watching all the episodes of Ghost Hunters that are online right now or conquering everyone at Farmville (note: I have no idea what Farmville is about) or stealing one of every kind of Jelly Belly jelly bean from the bulk bins at the grocery store because you feel like there's just no point in trying. Take heart! Keepin' on keepin' on is the best way toward making serious headway against the responsibilities that are making you nuts.
What are your tips for surviving stress? Tell me in the comments below!
-June the Homemaker