Take a second and mentally run through everything you have to do in the next hour. At any point did you think about checking in with yourself, or did you run through a laundry list of to-do’s and leave yourself out of the equation? With the semester now picking up speed it can be easy to lose yourself down the rabbit hole of papers, tests, social engagements, and everything else on the daily college girl’s list. If you ever find yourself knee deep in responsibilities, searching for a way to manage it all, remember: seeking is just a way of winning yourself back.
1. Take a few minutes to focus on only your breath
When you find yourself running down your list of daily tasks – and we all do it – take a second to pause, and remember that you have a center. Returning to your self in your natural state not only eliminates stress, but drawing energy from being in the present moment can also help you enjoy yourself along the way. Take a drink of water, and feel yourself breathe. Even if it’s only for 60 seconds, those were 60 seconds you spent solely with yourself out of 86,400 in a day.
2. Whatever task you’re doing, dedicate yourself to it
It seems simple, but bringing yourself to the present by focusing your mind on one task at a time boosts overall focus, happiness, and energy. When you’re eating, just eat. When you’re reading, just read. No interruptions, no multitasking. Be aware of every step of what you’re engaged in and you will naturally tune into yourself. Ask yourself, how are you feeling about this task, what does this task give back to you?
As the core of Zen practice, zazen is simply sitting. While some use it as a form of meditation, sitting in awareness of the moment is a way to check in with yourself and listen to what your mind and body has to tell you. Take a few minutes when you’re in the library, at the student center, in the cafeteria, wherever you may be, to quietly sit, enjoy your own company, and see what happens.
4. Do something for you
Whenever you feel your schedule taking over, step back and reevaluate. Angelina Jolie said, “The only way to have a life is to commit to it like crazy.” Why not start by committing time to yourself? Have that bowl of ice cream, listen to “your song” on repeat, go to that yoga class – no one else is going to do it for you. You deserve your own love and affection.
5. Make “you time”
What if instead of writing a to-do list you wrote a list of things you love? Challenge yourself to do at least one thing on that list everyday. Never cheat yourself into thinking that this is a means of procrastination, you’re simply making yourself a priority.
6. Do a random act of kindness
Surprise someone. Leave a note on your door for your roommate, make a card and send it to a friend at another college without an occasion, let someone go ahead of you in line at the cafeteria, or even simply smile at everyone you pass by. Practicing the act of kindness everyday only brings more kindness and light into your own life.
7. Play with a pet
Ok, so sometimes reconnecting with yourself can also be done in the company of a furry friend. Pets are natural stress relievers and endorphin boosters, not to mention incredibly cute. Whether you’re a self-proclaimed cat person or dog person, your inner self doesn’t discriminate when it comes to a few minutes of playtime.
What do you think?
What’s your favorite way to get reconnected with yourself during the day? Do you have any special ways to take a break or de-stress? Drop us a comment and let us know!