Choose Mindfulness Over Stressfulness

Common types of mindfulness practices and how a college student can incorporate it.

When we take the time to be mindful, it means we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them or regretting our choices. During mindfulness, thoughts tune into the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.

Studies show that practicing mindfulness can ease anxiety, mental stress and change the body and brain for the better. So, for all the college students out there dealing with the stress of studying for final exams, applying for internships and preparing for graduation – know that mindfulness boosts your memory, focus, emotional stability and decreases the level of stress and anxiety.

If it seems like a better option than stuffing your body with caffeine and energy drinks, consider these five ways to up your end-of-year game by adding mindfulness to your daily life.

Ways students can practice mindfulness

1. Practice meditation

Woman practicing yoga to practice mindfulness.

Mediation perhaps is the best and the most accessible way to cultivate mindfulness. Find a quiet space, sit or lie down comfortably and close your eyes. The key to effective meditation is to free your mind from any thoughts that worry you. It is challenging at first, but the easiest way to concentrate is to focus on your breath and on how your body moves with each inhalation and exhalation.

Meditation does not have to last for a long time – only five minutes of practice each day will help you cultivate constructive thoughts, ignore distractions and be in control of your emotions.

2. Keep a journal

Young woman sitting on rug and using laptop

Since mindfulness is all about living in the moment and not fretting about the future or the past, it would be helpful to begin writing a gratitude journal for yourself. Research shows that writing a gratitude journal for 15 minutes before bedtime helps students worry less and sleep longer and better afterward.

Start small – write down three things you are grateful at the end of the day. Whenever you are feeling down, this journal will re-direct your attention to more positive experiences by reminding you of all the positive elements in your life.

3. Appreciate the nature

Mindful woman at the park playing with her dog.

Nature has always provided some soothing sensations that bring calmness and peacefulness to mind and the body. Next time you go to class, rather than zooming out or checking your phone, look at the nature around you. Merely paying attention to the flowers, trees, and sky will clear the fog of anxious thoughts, putting you in a state of serenity and clear mental focus.

4. Listen to music

Music can help us understand our inner world of thoughts, emotions, and feeling and remind us that our pain is not unique and that many people struggle with the problem similar to ours. Wisdom, love, fear, and joy – all can be communicated through the music.

Meditation does not necessary entails listening to relaxing, soothing music. Researchers suggest that enjoying your favorite music of any kind is good for the body, mind, and spirit. So, if you prefer Metallica to develop insight, rock on!

5. Eat slowly

Since eating is an inevitable part of the everyday routine, you might as well practice mindful eating. With often so little time breaks between the classes, students tend to eat rapidly while also scrolling through emails or completing homework assignments.

Simply put, mindful eating is eating slowly and paying attention to the food’s flavors and texture. It will take some time to remember to practice mindful eating during each meal, but this method will help you manage your emotions. Over time, you will be able to control your eating urges and the emotions that trigger unhealthy eating.

Mindfulness in Addiction Recovery

After high school graduation, many students are shocked to find out that college may not be what they expected it to be. As a result of leaving home for the first time and suddenly facing the stress of a heavy course load, students begin to struggle with depression and anxiety and often turn to substance abuse to help themselves cope with new responsibilities and independent lifestyle.

If a student began to abuse some sort of substance and has poor mental health, one of the best ways for
him or her to recover from addiction is to look into long term dual diagnosis treatment facilities. By
conducting mindfulness meditation, yoga, and other holistic therapies, an addiction treatment center
can help you build a customized path to recovery with dual diagnosis, 12-step, faith-based and other
unique programs that will teach the student to manage the stress of college life.


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