How to manage your stress before finals season

Writer Ambre Winfrey
Ambre Winfrey

It’s week twelve, and we’re all starting to feel like we’re drowning in assignments and extracurricular responsibilities. Being stressed and feeling overwhelmed in college is a very real thing. It’s important to remember that the perpetual feeling of being swamped happens to everyone when you’re being a bit hard on yourself.

Remember to take those little moments. Whether it be rewarding yourself with an extra coffee during the week or waking up a bit earlier on Wednesdays for that 7 a.m. cycling class at Barnes—do it.

A great tip is to utilize the amazing Barnes Center at The Arch. The workers at Barnes probably know me by name at this point because I go in so much. I’m either there for an intense workout, a cycling class or a session in one of the MindSpa rooms, where I’m indulging in the wind chimes and white noise.

Another tip is to find your people! I swear by it and will always offer that piece of advice to anyone. Everyone goes through their own struggles, but what helps me is knowing that I have people to confide in and lean on when it gets tough for me mentally, physically and emotionally. There’s quite literally nothing more enjoyable and calming than spending quality time with those that care about you.

Eat and drink in a way that prioritizes your health! Try implementing a balanced diet into your routine and I can guarantee that you’ll see a difference.

Also, taking the time to relax daily can help manage the stress you’re under. Practicing things like mindfulness, mediation and yoga are extremely helpful as well. There are a lot of phone apps and even YouTube channels dedicated solely to these practices.

Time management is also vital when dealing with stress. It can be hard to focus when your schedule is jam-packed and you’ve spread yourself too thin. Don’t over-commit yourself. Say yes to the opportunities that come your way, but remember the importance of saying no, too. Learn to take breaks when dealing with big projects. When you plan your time and assignments well you can afford to take a break here and there.

As a person who’s easily stressed, I could go on and on about tips I’d like to share, but most importantly, show yourself grace. It’s important to remember that your time here at Syracuse should be looked at as a marathon not a sprint. It’s important to realize you can’t always show up 100% for everything all at once. Being mindful of that goes a long way.

I hope these tips are helpful. Have a great rest of your semester. Finish strong!

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