It's that time in the semester when midterms stack up against you, inducing sleepless nights, mountains of work to be done, and a lost social life. But fear not, there is relief for this hell week.
Try out one of these 5 helpful tips along with a little 5-HTP to
boost your serotonin production and leave your ready to take on the
world (without gorging yourself in fast food 3 times a day).
Everyday Health even claims that a 20-minute jog around the block could result in improved mood for up to 12 hours.
2. Do something enjoyable - take a moment to do something you actually want to do. Whether that means taking a coffee break with a friend for some social interaction, drawing or writing to stimulate your creative outlets, or even vegging out for a 20 or 30-minute TV show, allow yourself a little reward for your dedicated work. It's important to give yourself some opportunity to be happy with what you're doing instead of wanting to pull your hair out reading 10-point font studying a subject you couldn't care less about. Just make sure to be careful you don't get carried away and lose all motivation for the work you still need to tackle.
3. Pucker up - a study on WebMD suggests that kissing your significant other can help to significantly reduce your stress levels. A quick peck and hug from someone you care about can help to reassure you that you're supported and will get through this rough spot. As Dr. Laura Berman says "Kissing relieves stress by creating a sense of connectedness, which releases endorphins, the chemicals that counteract stress and depression."
4. Laugh - laughter really can be the best medicine when you're feeling overwhelmed. According to Mayo Clinic something as simple as laughing "enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain." Taking a break to watch some hilarious videos on youtube, or even some Aziz Ansari or Kevin Hart on Netflix can help to reboot your mood and leave you feeling a bit more relaxed.
5. Power Nap - sleep deprivation is never a fun thing and unfortunately also a common bi-product of a week full of tests and papers. Not getting enough rest can leave you feeling groggy, unmotivated and even hinder your ability to retain the information you're trying to ingrain into your brain. WebMD informs us that different lengths of naps can benefit different target brain functions. The 15-20 minute power nap, or the "stage 2 nap, is good for altertness and motor learning skills like typing or playing the piano. Slow-wave napping... for 30-60 minutes is good for decision making skills, such as memorizing vocabulary or recalling directions. Getting rapid eye movement or REM sleep, usually 60-90 minutes of napping, plays a key roll in making new connections in the brain and solving creative problems."
Monday, March 3, 2014
With the weather beginning to warm up it's a great time to get the whole family outside! Combat the growing nature-deficiency in your kiddos' generation or let the dog escape the confines of the yard for an afternoon. Spontaneous family games can be a great way to burn a few extra calories without even thinking about it - throw a baseball around, start a pick-up soccer game with the kids, play keep-away with your dog. The idea is just to get out and get moving! Combat the pale that's accumulated during the winter and get some good ol' vitamin D from the sunshine.