How to prevent mental burnout in college students

College life can be pretty fast-paced and demanding. Apart from the daily classes and lectures, there are constantly other things going around them – extracurricular activities, competitions, social obligations, along with assignments, tests, and revision.

The hectic schedule of college life can take a toll on the health of students and lead them to ‘burnout’. Some students may become prone to anxiety attacks and depressive episodes. Therefore, it is essential to follow a structure and routine which will help then tackle and juggle all of the work and responsibilities effectively. It will also prevent compromising on your health – both physical and mental.

How to keep students away from saturation point?

Here are some of the things you can follow to avoid breaking down during your college life:

1. Set up a schedule

Make a time table and stick to it. Note down the details of your assignments, projects, and exams and allot specific time to each area. Use a planner to jot down important reminders and if possible, set up a board in your room with your schedule written on it.

Prioritize your study plans based on the difficulty level of the subject – allot more time to a subject which that is difficult and has a lot of ground to cover. Setting a schedule saves time and increases efficiency.

2. Take frequent breaks while studying

Studying for long hours on end is actually not recommended. Our brain stops processing information after 45 minutes. Studying beyond that point is of no use. Instead, you should take regular breaks of 30 minutes during which you can listen to music or munch on snacks. This will be more effective and your brain will be able to retain more information. It will also not allow fatigue and boredom to set in.

3. Avoid procrastination

With the amount of workload assigned in college, it is very tempting to put off your work for the next day. However, this will only increase your burden and but also make you feel the pressure right before the deadline. This sort of feeling can often lead to burnout!

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Avoid procrastination and start working on your assignments bit by bit as soon as you get them done on time. Putting off work to the last moment will only result in panic attacks and you won’t be able to deliver your best.

4. Follow a proper diet

A lot of energy is expended in college. Thus, it is necessary to follow a proper diet to consume the necessary vitamins and minerals. Opt for healthy foods like meat, green leafy vegetables, fruits, nuts, and dairy products. Avoid junk food as much as possible. Staying hydrated is equally important, especially during summer. Make sure to drink at least 8 glasses of water.

5. Get adequate sleep and rest

A college student ideally requires 8 hours of sleep. Try to fix a time for sleeping and waking up. Do not compromise on your sleep, as it will affect your performance in college. A proper night’s sleep will be beneficial to your studies. Sleep helps to consolidate the memory, so avoid late night study sessions and give your brain some rest so that it can process all the information.

6. Stay connected to your friends and family

Keep in touch with your close ones and make plans with them as frequently as possible. It can be a refreshing break from the monotonous routine of college and you can catch up with your folks to see what they are up to. College can get quite stressful – having a support group of people you can confide in will do wonders.

7. Take a mental health day every once in a while

When things get too hectic, take a day off just to relax and unwind. You can catch up on your favorite series, visit the cafe you’ve been planning to try, and make plans with friends. You can also simply relax, take a nice bath, eat ice cream and lie down in your comfortable pajamas. Practicing self-care is very important, otherwise, the workload and stress can become too much to handle.

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8. Practice mindfulness and meditation

College can get stressful and overwhelming easily. In order to keep a clear head, practice mindfulness and meditation. You can practice mindfulness as soon as you wake up in the morning. Spend 10 minutes with your eyes closed, observe your breathing and think about your dreams and goals using imagery. You can meditate with the help of various meditative music and videos as well.

9. Get fresh air

It is important for the body to get some sunlight as it is the most important source of Vitamin D. Spend 10-15 minutes in sunlight daily. Spend time in nature. Take a stroll in the park or sit on a garden bench with a book. Staying inside a packed room the whole day can be stifling and suffocating. Spending time outdoors can rejuvenate our body and boost our mood.

10. Exercise

Form a habit of exercising daily, even if it is just for 20 minutes. You can go for jogging, practice yoga, play a sport or join the gym. Studying while sitting for hours on end can make the body stiff and rigid. Exercising regularly will help stretch the muscles of your body and increase your flexibility. It will also boost your stamina, allowing you to be more productive.

11. Positive attitude

Adopt a positive and healthy attitude. Don’t stress yourself out on things that are beyond your control. Push yourself out of your comfort zone but do not exert yourself to the point of exhaustion. Recognize your strengths and limitations – instead of working hard, work smart.

12. Indulge in hobbies

Take up a hobby to make your leisure time constructive and rewarding. Whether it is joining dance classes or art lessons, learning to play an instrument or trying out new recipes – the activities will act as a stress buster and allow you to develop and expand your interests further.

Final thoughts

College life can be demanding. You will experience ups and downs and face different challenges, but the end result will be rewarding. Maintaining a balance with proper planning and execution will help you sail through the years easily. Following these tips will prevent burnout and you will be able to enjoy the college life to the fullest.

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