If you’re stressed out, then here’s what you need to do:

Someone saying that school is difficult does not do school justice. School is a large portion of students’ lives in which they try to excel while also trying to excel in every aspect of their lives. Homework, tests, sports, extracurriculars, jobs and social lives cover the areas that just barely scratch the surface of the average student’s life. It goes without saying that everyone needs a break now and then.

So if you are feeling stressed out, then here is what you should do:

First, put all of your work away. The best way to add stress is to sit next to an open book and tell yourself you are going to start in just ten more minutes. This is because you are never going to start it. You will only lose potential working time, creating more stress. So, put everything away.

Next, clear your mind of any work you still have to do. Forget about the project or test and think of something you can do that will make you happy. If you are going to take time to relax, you may as well actually relax and not think about work. Additionally, if you are still worrying about your work while you are relaxing, you will only increase your stress level.

Now that your work is away and off of your mind, you will be able to take a break and alleviate your stress. It is time to find something you love and do it. Here are some suggestions:

Laugh. Go watch some comedians or a funny TV show. Take this time to enjoy yourself. Bo Burnham is a good example. He has a show on Netflix and YouTube called “what.” that is a great way to forget about your problems for an hour. If not a comedian, so many shows are all of the internet that are short and funny: Parks and Recreation, Modern Family, Bob’s Burgers, etc. Go find one you enjoy and watch it.

Listen. For some people, it is easier to relax by simply laying down and listening to music or doing something of the like. Find your favorite bands and types of music and go listen to them. A couple of bands have recently released new albums such as Imagine Dragons’ Smoke + Mirrors and Fall Out Boy’s American Beauty/American Psycho. It is so easy to become lost in music, making it a great way to take a break from working and forget about your stress for the time being.

Leave. No matter what you want to do in order to distract yourself, you have to be sure to leave your environment. If you are at the library, go grab some coffee. If you are at home during the day, call a friend and have lunch or simply go for a walk. If you are at home during the night, leave the room for a little while. It is important that you leave your environment, because if you stay near your work, it will be on your mind and you will not be able to truly relax.

It is necessary for everyone to take breaks when they are working. It is suggested that around every 50-90 minutes, you take a 15-20 minute break. With multiple breaks in one working period, it may become difficult to keep leaving your environment. Although this is understandable, it cannot be an excuse. Make the effort to go somewhere else and do something in order to reduce your stress levels and help you be more productive when you return to your work.

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