How to de-stress without screens
When it comes to managing a busy schedule as a college student, we all know that it is essential to fit in time to de-stress. But if I’m being entirely honest, I often find myself sprawled out on my bed mindlessly scrolling through social media after a long day. Yet, it doesn’t feel very relieving to look at the time and realize that I just spent an entire hour glued to my phone watching random videos. In fact, I often end up feeling upset about being unproductive and even more overwhelmed by my to-do list. What I have learned is that screen-free methods of de-stressing actually leave me feeling more relaxed, motivated to get back to work, and content with what I accomplished at the end of the day.
Relax on your own
Finding a way to relax without technology is the perfect opportunity to treat yourself. If you take a break on your own, making something nice for yourself can be a great way to boost your mood. You can make your favorite drink – whether it be a classic cup of coffee or a tasty fruit smoothie – or put together a healthy meal or snack. Cooking and baking can be a great way to get yourself in a positive mindset so that you can tackle the rest of your responsibilities.
Another creative way to unwind is to get your thoughts out by drawing or writing in a journal. If you feel like a “Dear Diary” entry is a little too cheesy for you, you can even try just writing out your highs and lows about your day on a sticky note. I often find that this can help me focus on positive moments and make changes to better tackle my schedule the following day.
Spend time with friends
If you are in the mood for a more social version of taking a technology-free break, spending time with others can be a great way to recharge your energy and positivity. On a nice day, my favorite thing to do is set out a blanket somewhere on campus and have a picnic with friends. And if you have something like a hammock, a frisbee, or a spike ball net, it can be a great addition to the fun. Don’t be afraid to mention to your friends that you are planning a screen-free get together. While it may be fun to take a picture to capture the moment, there’s nothing less social than when everyone is checking social media instead of hanging out together!
One of the best things you can do to both relieve stress and feel good about yourself is to get outside and do something active. College campuses are especially great places to walk, run, or bike around. If you feel like a change in scenery, try looking for a nearby park where you can explore while being active.
I have noticed that students easily forget all of the fun opportunities to be active that colleges often provide students for free. See what free classes your college gym might offer like Zumba, dance, or martial arts. Get moving and motivated by playing basketball or challenging your friend to a game of racquetball. I know that for me, being active can really help me de-stress and feel more accomplished by the end of the day.
When it comes to unwinding without technology, the possibilities are truly endless. Whether you feel like spending time with other people, going outside, or treating yourself, all it takes is a little creativity to find a fulfilling and motivating way to reset. So next time you feel like taking a break, put your phone down, close your laptop, and discover how refreshing it is to be stress-free by going screen-free.