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11 Moving Tips to Consider During Move-Out

As the academic school year is winding down and summer is fast approaching. That can only mean one thing; it’s the season for moving out! Getting to go back home is exciting, but the thought of having to transport all of your belongings within a certain time constraint can certainly be daunting. Students living on and off-campus will soon have to pack up all their belongings to make the journey back home. Here are some things you can consider before and during the packing process. 

  1. Start packing ahead of time. 

This might seem insignificant at first, but getting a head start can never do any harm. Many students think that moving out won’t take too much time, but there is definitely more work to be done than one might initially assume. It is easier to pack little by little instead of trying to cram everything in random boxes the day before moving out.

  1. Make a mental list of everything that you need to do.

 This is another step that might seem like a waste of time, but I can assure you; it is definitely important and worthwhile! Students are so used to seeing their room that they get desensitized to how much stuff they actually have. Think back to extra supplies, miscellaneous furniture/appliances, seasonal clothes, and other trinkets that you might have tucked away in drawers or closets out of sight. Do a scan of your space and re-familiarize yourself with all your possessions. 

  1. Learn to let go of items you aren’t/haven’t used. 

Throw away all the items you’ve been hoarding throughout the semester. Yes, this means you have to take out the trash that you’ve been too lazy to take out. Make sure to scan your room and get rid of anything that you don’t need to eliminate unnecessary items that take up space. You’ll be surprised at how much good a bit of decluttering can do to your mental state.

  1. Separate your things from your roommate’s belongings. 

Although not everyone has a roommate, it can be applied to everyone in different contexts. If you do have a roommate, it is important to talk to them to decide who will take previously shared appliances/goods. Even if you live alone, make sure to go around looking for objects that your friends might have forgotten in your space or items that you’ve previously borrowed and never given back. 

  1. Use big boxes separated into different categories so that it is easy to differentiate the items when reopening them back at home.

Not everyone has the resources to pack in big moving boxes, but sticking to containers with a solid structure is always recommended when making a big move. It’s easier to carry out in the short term, easier to manage and reduces the chances of damage during the transportation process.

  1. Make sure to have labels on everything after categorizing your belongings.

This might take some time in the beginning, but it will be useful in the end when you have to find something really quickly. Categorizing items also makes it easier to pack since everything has a given place it needs to be. It is really tempting to skimp on this step during the process, but naming boxes/containers will save you more time in the long run especially when you unpack. 

  1. Make use of towels, clothes, and other soft linen items to act like bubble wrap/packing peanuts. 

Anything that takes up less space is useful, and in this case, it can also save some money. Instead of investing in bubble wrap or foam to shelter the more fragile or glass items, substitute it for things you already have to pack: thick padded sweaters, fluffy towels, fuzzy socks, etc. 

  1. Roll up clothes, towels, blankets, and any other foldable item.

The biggest thing about packing to make a big move is to optimize space. Although everyone has their personal preferred style of folding clothing items, I highly recommend the rolling method during move-out. Rolling up clothing items tightly will save so much space, and the compact style makes it easier to move around. 

  1. Heavier items on the bottom, lighter items on the top.

This might seem like common sense, but it’s amazing how much we can forget when we are rushing in order to get the moving part over with. Unless you want to be dealing with bent or broken items, it is smart to always keep in mind that heavier things go on the bottom of the boxes. Yes– this means that you have to empty out the box and restart when you find something towards the end of packing that needs to be packed at the bottom. 

  1. Make use of school backpacks, duffel bags, etc.

Have all the essential items that you use the most in your backpack, like your laptop, phone, chargers, and earphones since things can get hectic and lost during the process of moving out. This also means that all your other bags can have a role too. Many students pack away unused bags into boxes, but why not make use of them? Bags are designed to store belongings in a contained space while also making them easier to transport. 

  1. Avoid being lazy and throwing everything in one box.

This might sound like something that is obvious, but moving can be mentally and physically draining. This also means that giving up is a temptation that will constantly nag you in the back of your mind. Definitely try to avoid shoving everything in boxes in an unorganized manner due to frustration. 

Everyone has been through the stressful process of moving, and sometimes it might feel like giving in to the anxiety is an easy fix. Worry not; take a deep breath and continue on slowly. Put on some relaxing music or a podcast you enjoy in the background while working, and it’s okay to take it step by step slowly. When starting, it might seem like there is no end to the monumental  task but remember, there is always a rewarding end waiting at the finish line for each journey!

Physical Signs of Stress

Stress levels are at an all-time high this time of year, especially with final exams right around the corner. Most people experience physical symptoms of stress but they don’t always know how to identify them or, more importantly, how to manage them. This article discusses common physical responses to stress, and some strategies for stress relief.

Trouble sleeping

When I’m overly stressed, one of my biggest indicators of that stress  is when I’m having trouble sleeping. I have found that limiting screen time half an hour before bed has been most effective in combating this. I also keep an emergency supply of melatonin gummies on my bedside table and wear a sleep mask at night. When you’re exhausted, your reactions to other stressful situations are  likely to be exacerbated , so getting enough sleep is crucial.

Headaches

Headaches are a common symptom of stress and can sometimes be the most debilitating symptom. Speaking from experience, I can hardly focus when I’m down with a bad headache, which ends up stressing me out even more. Advil is great for short-term relief, but there are other things you can do to prevent stress-related headaches from occurring in the first place. Drinking water, getting enough sleep, and eating healthy, balanced meals have proven really effective in combatting these headaches.

Rapid Heartbeat

Many people experience an elevated heart rate when they’re experiencing high-stress levels. This is mainly because our bodies release cortisol and adrenaline in response to stress. One of the most common remedies for this symptom is listening to relaxing music during stressful tasks. Other techniques include practicing breathing exercises, meditation, and yoga.

Most college students experience stress throughout the entire semester, but especially towards  its  end with the approaching deadlines, final grades, and semester exams. It can take a huge toll on your ability to function in day-to-day life, so it’s important to know when stress is  becoming a problem and learn how to manage it.

How To De-stress: Burnout Edition

It’s that point in the semester where everything seems dreadful and mentally draining. So here’s a gentle reminder that it’s okay to take a break from schoolwork and relax. What are some ways to do that? You’ve come to the right place because I’ve got a list!

  1. Watch something you love: 

We’ve all got a comfort show that always puts us in a good mood. Having a good laugh can help relieve stress after tense study sessions. Even if it isn’t a comedy, watching something that makes you happy is what matters, whether that be true crime or cartoons. Pro tip: anything on Disney + is great for a pick-me-up, tbh.

  1. Read

Sometimes we’re so caught up in homework that we disregard the nine unread books that lie idly sitting on our shelf. Try reading one of them, or maybe finishing the one you already started. Reading books is a good way to pass time, and forget about everything else happening in the world. You’re stuck in someone else’s fantasy when you read, hopefully, a good one. And hey, at least it’s not your schoolwork! 

  1. Enjoy your favorite comfort foods

Just the other day, I made matcha-white chocolate chip cookies with my sister and instantly felt better after eating them. After hours of homework, eating something nice is rewarding. Treat yourself, even if that means ordering that expensive Uber Eats meal. Trust me; you deserve it

  1. Play a fun game

When I want a small break, I crack open the good ol’ Nintendo Switch and play a game. Lately, I’ve been playing “Kirby and the Forgotten Land” for a bit of fun before returning to homework. Of course, it doesn’t have just to console games but could be board games, cards, or whatever you find fun. Cool math games, anyone?

  1. Take a nap

Nothing feels better than a nice nap! Don’t force yourself to stay awake if you’re exhausted and haven’t gotten enough rest. Naps aren’t a waste of time if you use them wisely. Your work can wait till you’re in a better mental and physical state. Go rest!

  1. Let it out! 

When in doubt, scream, sigh or sing, as it will all relieve that pent-up stress. If you’re able, go ahead and just let out a good scream. If not, sighing works too, as it relieves tension in the upper body. Maybe, you feel the need to sing your favorite song, such as “As It Was” by Harry Styles or “Pied Piper” by BTS (my current favorites). Doing so helps release endorphins and hormones like oxytocin, putting you in a better mood.

When things get tough as finals approach, make sure to take a break. Burnout hits pretty hard and can take a toll on your mental health. Everything on this list has personally helped me feel better during burnout season, and I hope it helps you too. Remember, you’ve got this, and we’re almost there!

Featured Image By Morgan Scruggs

How to Consume Social Media In A Healthy Way

Even though social media intends to connect people from all over the world, it can often make us feel more isolated when consumed in an unhealthy way. It’s so easy to compare yourself to someone else’s highlight reel on Instagram or feel left out when you see photos from a get-together you didn’t invited to. For some people, time spent on social media leaves them feeling drained and alone, but social media has the potential to do the opposite if it was used in the right way.

My first piece of advice is to unfollow any social media creator that makes you feel worse after viewing their content. This doesn’t have to be about not liking their posts or their personality, but if you can’t view their content without criticizing yourself and comparing yourself to them, it’s probably best that you unfollow them. Instead, follow creators who promote a healthy body image and present themselves as real human beings on social media. One of my favorite social media creators is Victoria Garrick. She openly shares her journey of self-love and recovery after an eating disorder. She is known for her “#RealPost”s, where she posts unfiltered, unedited pictures that normalize things like stomach rolls, stretch marks, and breakouts. Social media creators like Garrick make me feel validated and normal. They encourage me to join the movement and post real photos of myself rather than the most polished and edited versions of those photos.

I also recommend limitinghow much time you spend on social media every day. I know it’s an easy way to pass the time, but even when consuming social media in the healthiest way possible, one can feel drained after spending hours watching videos on TikTok or scrolling through their Twitter feed. One way to accomplish this is by putting time limits on these apps, so you won’t be able to access them after spending a certain amount of time on them.

On the flip side, if you’ve ever posted pictures on Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, or any other social media platform, you yourself are a social media creator! That means that if you’ve ever spent hours editing your photos by shrinking your stomach and putting on a fake makeup filter, you’re contributing to the problem. One of the biggest issues of social media is that many people don’t post real pictures of themselves. As a result, people viewing their content compare themselves to a person that doesn’t even exist! I totally get cropping a photo, upping the brightness, and adding a little saturation, but when it gets to a point where you hardly recognize the person in the photo, something needs to change. 

Next time you open TikTok or draft an Instagram post, keep these things in mind. Most people on social media only share the best parts of their lives, so comparing yourself to their highlight reel is unfair. The first step towards learning to consume and create social media in a healthy way is to be mindful of these things and try our best to stay real online.

Featured Image By Allison Geddie

Spring Cleaning Tips

Spring is here, which means it’s a great time for some spring cleaning! If you feel like things have been messy or chaotic in your life, this is a great opportunity to take some time for yourself and get your life together. There are many ways to do your spring cleaning, but here are some of the best tips on how to begin spring cleaning and refresh your life!

  1. Clean your physical space

Photo by Dan Gold on Unsplash

Having a clean and organized space is a great start. Taking the time to clean out and declutter your physical space will remove any distractions and bring you a sense of serenity and comfort, thereby putting you in a good headspace. A few ways to clean your physical space are:

*Cleaning your room

*Going through clothes in your closet

*Cleaning your bathroom

*Cleaning out your desk

  1. Go through your technology

Photo by Domenico Loia on Unsplash

We spend so much of our time on our phones and other electronic devices. We have so many different files and apps that it can be hard to keep track of them all. And often, we have files on our devices that we don’t have any use for anymore. There are a few ways you can clean out your technological space to get rid of any items you don’t use, which include:

*Organizing your desktop files and deleting anything you will no longer need

*Unfollowing anyone on social media whose feed doesn’t bring you joy

*Organizing or deleting photos from your camera roll 

*Going through your favorite music streaming app and removing any songs you no longer like or listen to

  1. Refresh your mind

Photo by Content Pixie on Unsplash

Spring is a time for new beginnings, so why not give your brain the refresh it needs. Take some time to organize your thoughts and get some clarity on the things that have been bothering you. A few ways to refresh your mind include:

*Make a list of things you’re grateful for

*Finding a journal prompt and taking 15 minutes to write about it

*Meditation

*Picking up the phone and reaching out to a loved one

While some of these tasks may seem daunting at first, breaking them up into bite-size chunks will make them much more accomplishable. Despite how busy things can get during this time of the semester, setting aside a few minutes every day can help you refresh and get what you need in life. So put on your favorite spring music and do the forms of spring cleaning that will help you refresh your life!