5 Ways To Avoid Burning Out

Headshot of Paola González
Paola González

It’s been almost seven weeks since classes started and I can start to feel the burnout. My classmates and I often talk about how busy we are all the time and don’t have time to ourselves.

Although grad school is important and a huge responsibility, it’s an even bigger responsibility to take care of yourself. A lot of people might find it hard to find the time to take care of themselves but in this article, I will share some minor things you can do every day to keep a healthy mind and body.

Make your bed

This might sound ridiculous for some people since we’re always taught to make our beds, but coming home to a well-made bed after a long day at school or work just feels different.

It only takes five minutes out of your morning, and you can motivate yourself by listening to your favorite song or podcast while you do it. You’ll thank yourself when you get back home to a nicely made bed you can throw yourself on.

Stay hydrated 

Sometimes we get so busy we forget to drink water. Staying hydrated is very important because it helps our bodies perform better and keeps our energy levels stable.

According to healthline.com, mild dehydration can impair energy levels and mood, and can lead to reductions in memory and brain performance. Don’t be a drip! Take a sip.

Sit outside 

Take a minute to go outside and appreciate nature. Let the breeze touch your skin, sit on the grass, hug a tree; you’d be surprised by how much these things can improve your mood. I personally enjoy taking a walk in Thornden Park in the afternoons. If you’re busy in the afternoon, do it in the morning! Don’t have time? Take a little detour on your way to class. 

Use the Barnes Center resources

Within the Barnes Center you can find the Crowley Family MindSpa, which offers three rooms for students to practice mindfulness and other guided relaxation techniques in a private environment. You can spend time in these rooms utilizing the light therapy boxes, practicing meditation or playing with tools that help de-stress.

Don’t forget to eat

A lot of times we find ourselves so busy we forget to eat. Eating is important because it keeps our bodies and minds fueled with energy. It helps us stay focused and concentrate. If you have a busy class schedule, carry snacks around and eat them between classes. Make sure you get some fuel as soon as you wake up and snack on down until your next opportunity to have a meal.

Respect your sleep schedule

Sleep! Your body needs the time to rest and recuperate after a long day at school or work. Don’t push yourself over the edge with all-nighters; make yourself a priority and get those eight hours. If you’re doing homework, it can wait until the next day. And if you’re cramming for an exam, if you didn’t learn it until the night before, you won’t learn it staying up.

Although these pieces of advice might seem obvious and simple, they make a huge difference on an everyday basis. I hope these helped and definitely make sure to practice some of these as midterm season approaches!

Paola González is a graduate student in the  magazine, news and digital journalism program at the Newhouse School.