Column: Find a springtime stress release

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By Jessica Skaggs

At the beginning of this week, local temperatures reached 70 degrees. After what’s felt like a never-ending season of frigid temperatures, winter blues are starting to melt away just as what could be argued the most stressful time of year is beginning to pick up speed.

Graduations, transfer requirements, summer jobs and internships, spring classes reaching their climax; all these things can start to pile up and weigh heavy on a student right as the sun starts to show its face again.

There are two ways to keep those blues at bay. One is to take care of yourself and maintain a healthy lifestyle. The second is to participate in something larger than yourself.

Since the beginning of the year, I have maintained a healthy diet and worked out regularly and I have to say it has really made a difference. It’s the few days where I’ll “cheat” and not work out or eat healthy that I notice how important keeping those two things in check really are.

Throughout the school year I am committed to involving myself in ways that benefit others, which is an important and necessary aspect of my life. But taking a break from all the organized chaos for an hour or two to focus on myself and to get stronger has been incredibly beneficial.

I’m not telling you this so you’ll think, ‘Oh, she is so in shape or a total gym rat,’ because I can assure you I’m not. But by taking those few hours a week to focus and improve one aspect of my life , it has caused me to feel healthier overall, and has proven to be an ideal stress release. I encourage you to do the same. Whether it’s going to the gym, or even reading a novel for fun, find something you love that relieves your day-to-day stress, and most importantly stay committed to it.

Human beings generally have a longing to involve themselves with one another. Participating in events such as the MS walk this weekend, or other charitable opportunities offered on this campus and community can provide a fresh perspective to one’s life. I know when Saturday comes I’ll be tempted to hit the snooze button, but as soon as I arrive at the walk, I will be re-energized and glad I didn’t catch a few more hours of sleep. Pulling yourself out of your comfort zone, especially to support a greater cause, lends itself to a richer, worthwhile experience.

The end of the spring semester is nearing. As it does, my hope is that all students and faculty alike find strength to finish strong by taking care of themselves or by breaking down the barriers of comfort and getting involved in an event within the community or on campus.

Contact Jessica Skaggs, managing editor, at jskaggs4@jccc.edu.

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