Where’s your head at?
Yes, I know, for a lot of us that brings on unwanted flashbacks to a terrifying Basement Jaxx video clip that we’d rather forget. But it’s a question worth asking – when was the last time you sat back in your desk chair and thought ‘how am I feeling?’ It’s tricky to do, because majority of the time we are so focussed on deadlines and responsibilities that we put our own well-being on the back-burner – especially during the busy parts of Semester. So take a moment, sit back in your chair, and consider the next few things to figure out your head space. It’s just as important as your deadline, if not more.
How’s my posture?
I am guilty of sitting like a grazing monkey until, for a brief moment, I realise how ridiculous I look and sit up straight before slowly returning to my natural bad posture. Sit all the way back in your chair and take a few deep breaths. Posture is good for correct breathing, breathing is good for oxygenating the brain, oxygenating the brain is good for a whole bunch of stuff you can read about here because I’m not a doctor. My point being, better posture, better concentration. Getting your head right is about identifying small ways you can improve your general health. Start here.
When was the last time I went outside?
Great question. Do you know what the weather is like today? Open your window and let some fresh air in, it might wake you up a bit. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth a few times and take a break from whatever is on your computer monitor. If you’re in study hermit mode, that’s cool, just set aside some time to leave the house – even if it’s just for coffee or takeout food. Walk outside to get it. Or chuck your headphones in and walk around the block once or twice. If you’re feeling crap, remove yourself from the slumped position in your bedroom and go for a stroll. There’s nothing wrong with going for a stroll to get chocolate and go back to your room, just make walking outside a part of the process.
What was the last meal I ate?
Did it have something green in it? If so, well done, with a student budget you’re still taking steps to include the right food groups into your diet. If you can’t remember the last time you ate vegetables, maybe give those guys another go, yeah? The easiest way to do this is to buy a few packets of frozen veggies and heat them up with some chicken, fish, or some red meat if you’ve got it handy. Study snacks are inevitable during busy times of Semester, and trust me, I’m the worst when it comes to snacking because I feel like crap and I can’t be bothered putting effort in. But if you manage to get some greens into the mix today, that’s a good day. Keep going.
When was the last time my heart rate went up?
And I don’t mean that time you went and saw the Conjuring 2 and pooped your pants. I’m talking the steady heart rate of someone who just walked up a hill with their groceries. If you can’t remember the last time you got off your butt and got moving, put your walking shoes on and head down to the beach. Grab a coffee or a juice, walk up and down on the sand. If you’re not near a beach, then go to the park with your headphones and do a lap. This doesn’t have to be every day if you’re super busy, but get those legs moving once or twice a week and you’ve got yourself a brand-spankin’ new regime. Call it progress
Wherever your head is at, just make sure you’re not allowing yourself to get buried under uni work and stress. You’re never without a friend to talk to or outside an arms-reach of taking a break. If you run through these questions a couple of times a week I guarantee, you’ll feel better and your head will be a lot clearer when you do have to concentrate on uni work.