Last week, all the work and lack of sleep finally took their toll on me. After more than a year in the United States, I got sick for the first time. It was a good run, which unfortunately had to end.
Note to self: A flu shot is not an end-all for all diseases. You could get a cold – and that was exactly what I got. Being sick is just a hassle – piling up my to-do list even higher because I need to get better. I had to spend the entire Thursday in bed to try to get at least a little better. I think I got sick because of lack of sleep.
We still do need sleep. Although we do have a responsibility to do well in school and in our other activities, we also have a responsibility to take care of ourselves. I may have forgotten that for a bit – sleeping for only about 4 hours per night for quite a while. And for someone who cannot function well without sleep, that is saying something. Case in point: today, I was frantically looking for my phone WHILE I was using it. A new low, even for me. A similar thing happened to me last year, which I explained in my EPI speech. See post here.
I’ll try to have at least a “lazy day” per week, although it might be hard now that there is only two weeks for finals (!). This means deadlines are breathing down are necks again. The good news, the break will be here soon. And I can’t wait for snow! 🙂
With all of the reading for class, stress of getting an internship, and just getting involved at Fisher I have noticed that a lot of my peers seem like they are really starting to freak out about it all. Especially the students like myself who are attempting to balance working full-time with a full load of courses. I wanted to just share a couple of ways that I’ve learned to relax and relieve some of the stress.
1. Listen to some music that takes you to a good place. My personal favorite, Taylor Swift, so dominant, there’s nothing better than sitting back, closing your eyes, and soaking in the sweet sounds of T Swift.
2. Stay physically active. I try to go to the gym to work out a couple times throughout the week. It definitely gives me a lot more energy throughout the week. Go for a run, do some P90X, play some Nintendo Wii Fit.
3. Watch some TV. Get involved in a TV series, right now I’m hooked on Friday Night Lights on ABC family. The new season of the Office just started last week too.
4. Go out on the weekends. We’re not just in grad school to learn, we are allowed to have fun, too. Tailgate on Saturday, go to the Arena District downtown (bars/restaurants) , etc., weekends are supposed to be fun.
5. I’ve heard that some people like to read books for leisure; personally I think that we have enough to read as it is. 🙂
6. Watch a Richard Gere movie. Let’s get real, he is The Man. We can all learn something from him.
Bottom line is that we all have our own personal stress relievers, but grad school is a whole different beast and we may have to discover some new ways to cope. Just thought I would share a few of mine.