Release, Relax, Re-Use: Stress
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Define: Stress Culture
- A common phenomenon among the student body at Georgetown University.
- A force that creates mental and emotional strain around social, academic, and even physical well-being.
- Especially prevalent during the final 2 weeks known as the exam periods.
What to do, what to do…
I’ve been stressed for as long as I can remember. In my baby photos, my brows were always furrowed, making me look like a 2 year old Jimmy Neutron that couldn’t figure out why I had to eat nasty baby food. I began prematurely graying before I had even turned 10 and was often praised for it by adults who said it meant wisdom. Similarly, Georgetown’s culture encourages stress, holding it on a pedestal as a trophy that means you are successfully doing too much. While I can rant about the issues revolving around this culture, let’s focus on discussing how to manage stress.
I’m sure by now you’ve heard that exercise can really help alleviate stress. Whether it be running, lifting weights, swimming, etc. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, all of these exercises help reduce fatigue, increase concentration, and act as natural painkillers. And while I do love my fair share of traditional exercise, I’ve discovered a few unconventional ways to work on my stress at Yates.
My stress needs somewhere to go (besides the roots of my hair) so I like hitting things.
Golf balls. The pitching range is located on the bottom level, in a room across from the basketball courts.
Baseballs. There is a batting range on the roof of Yates by Kehoe Field.
Tennis balls. Lower floor, back area, surrounded by mesh nets.
Squash and Racquetball balls. Rooms on bottom level near staircase.
To Rent Equipment: https://recreation.georgetown.edu/yates/pro-shop/rentals
To Reserve Courts: https://recreation.georgetown.edu/yates/racquet-sports/reservations
I find quite a few activities peaceful, giving me time to contemplate.
Swimming. The pool is rarely crowded and it’s quiet. All you hear is splashing water and all you see is splashing water (and the sun streaming in from the windows).
*click image for pool schedule
Sauna. I come here with my friends a lot. You still feel like something’s happening so you’re not being completely inefficient and it oddly feels “cleansing”.
Yoga Class. You really get to just think about your breathing, your body, and that really nice nap you get to take at the end.
Spin Class. This might just be a me thing, but sometimes it’s nice to listen to someone else yell. You can pretend it’s you yelling but have it not be you. Ok, this is definitely a me thing.
Find Group Fitness Classes: https://recreation.georgetown.edu/yates/group-fitness
Remind myself that life exists outside of “stress”
Play ping pong games with friends
Play tag in the basketball courts
Re-Use the Stress
Sometimes, stress is damaging, paralyzing, and difficult to manage. But when you have control of it, it can be one of your strongest motivators. I often use stress to push myself further during workouts.
Sprinting from my problems.
Lifting my grades up.
Pushing away my worries.
Taking a leap of faith.
So, when finals are creeping up and you’ve been spending more and more time in our beloved Brutalist-style library, take a break. After 6 hours, 12 hours, nay a whole 24 hours spent locked in that prison, you need some freedom. Somewhere you can be yourself, move your body, and actually feel like a living human. Go somewhere you can breathe and not feel guilty, where you can feel refreshed and accomplished at the same time. Yates. It’s always been Yates. Welcome to your real second home.