Tranquilize your mind with a few minutes of meditation. This is a great way to clear your mind and to eliminate distractions. U of T has a number of free meditation classes. Check out Student Life for more information
A great way to reduce stress and increase productivity, yoga is a great practice to pursue. U of T also has a number of free yoga classes. Check out Student Life for more information.
Put on some headphones, make a playlist of your favourite songs, and close your eyes and listen to them. Focus on the music and nothing else - your mind will wander naturally, but just try and bring it back to the music. This helps with focusing on the moment and clearing your mind.
Deep breathing often gets confused with meditation, however it should be noted that they are not the same. Deep breathing is when you breathe from your ‘core’ or your diaphragm. There are a number of different deep breathing techniques you can find on the internet. A really easy one to start off with is:
Inhale for a count of four
Exhale for a count of four
Make sure that you are continuously counting in your head! If you lose count don’t worry, just start again.
A technique involving focusing on the present - one thing that helps people relax is focusing on your surroundings and your current experience. Set a timer for five minutes, and pay attention to the environment you are in. How does the wind feel on your face? What colour is the sky? How does your scarf feel? Centering in on the present moment will help you focus on the present, and improve mindfulness.
After a day hunched over papers and computers, you’ll be surprised at how stiff and tense your body can get. There are lots of stretches you can do to get your blood flowing and to loosen up your body. Reaching your hands up to the sky, or rolling your head and shoulders are really short exercises and perfect to do when taking study breaks.
Art is a great way to express yourself and let your feelings out. Try doodling, drawing, or painting. Look out your window for inspiration or try to replicate another drawing. Once you get better you can even display your art work In the Skule Arts Festival for everyone to see!
Massages improve circulation and reduce cortisol levels. The Multifaith centre has free massages once a month for students on a first-come first-serve basis.
Colouring is getting more and more popular as a relaxation technique. Its not just for kids anymore! You can find colouring pages on anything, from animals to the city of Toronto to anything in between.
Go outside for a walk, or stand outside and take in the fresh air. This will provide you with more oxygen and help you function better!