We are halfway into the semester, and as homework assignments pile up, midterms begin and work is busier than usual, students often forget about self-care. Sometimes, it seems that there are not enough hours in the day to do everything. Stress is common on college campuses, whether you are remote or in-person, or a full-time or part-time student.
According to a study by the American Institute of Stress, eight in 10 college students experience frequent stress. Over time, too much stress can take a toll on the mental and physical well-being of college students and this becomes an issue as they adapt to their new college environment and attempt to create new connections.
Exercise, counseling, making meaningful connections, drinking tea and other activities can help relieve daily stress. Here are some tips, places and resources near the University of Arizona campus that students can use to foster self-care.
Campus Health Counseling and Psych Services (CAPS)
The Campus Health Counseling and Psych Services has many resources available for students and their goal is to get the UA community the support they need. On the CAPS website, there is a Mental Health Services & Basic Needs Directory available both on and off campus. There are costs to some services offered by CAPS but if this is a barrier, there are opportunities for financial assistance.
Hector Reyes, a Mental Health Clinician and Embedded Counselor at the Guerrero Student Center shared that establishing a sense of community is important for mental health. Students are an integral part of this learning community and Reyes encourages students to meet their professors and classmates. Reyes shared that mental health services come in many forms, from small things like drinking a cool glass of water to larger steps such as accessing counseling at CAPS.
“It’s self care from a long bubble bath to just a couple of minutes of good deep breathing to give mind that oxygen it really needs to function at its optimal levels,” Reyes said.“ I always tell my students the simplest thing you can do is breathe, hydrate and rest”.
CAPS Zoom drop in hours are Monday through Friday from 10a.m. to 3p.m. Students can also access the CAPS 24/7 Support by calling 520-621-3334.
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Students looking to relax and rewind can do so at Seven Cups Fine Chinese Teas. The tea shop, located in the Sam Hughes neighborhood, offers over 100 teas and a cozy environment for guests to recharge.
After trying a cup of Longjing tea from a couple of international friends while they were attending the UA, Austin Hodge was saddened that he couldn’t get this tea anywhere in the U.S. He changed his career to focus on importing tea from China and soon opened Seven Cups in 2004.
Andrew McNeill, the general manager of Seven Cups, shared that the shops name comes from a poem written by Lu Tong from the Tang Dynasty. The poem describes the mental and physical refreshment after having a cup of tea.
“The act of making tea in itself is sort of this exercise of mindfulness, a benefit to mental health,” McNeill said.
While preparing tea, people focus on the temperature and amount of leaves, leaving worries temporarily behind.
Seven Cups is open seven days a week from 11a.m to 5 p.m.
Physical activity is another outlet for stress. Undisputed Fitness and Training Center is located downtown is a one stop shop for martial arts and fitness.
Brandon Lacy, the general manager of Undisputed Fitness and Training Center, shared that martial arts, specifically Brazilian jiu jitsu, has helped him manage built up emotions.
“Things like anger and stuff are common human emotions. As long as we are letting them out in appropriate manners, they can be helpful,” Lacy said. “They can be things that fuel the fire, so to speak to get you into better shape and take care of yourself.”
Undisputed Fitness and Training Center offers a wide variety of classes for students and the Tucson community.
Campus Recreation Center
Students wishing to participate in physical activity as a form of self-care without additional costs can check out services offered through the UA Campus Rec. Centers. There are two Campus Rec. Centers, the NorthREC and the original Campus Rec. Each center offers free access to students enrolled in classes, as well as variously priced classes such as yoga, swimming and guided trips.
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