I’m honoured to have been granted the opportunity to be the Health & Wellness blogger at UofT for the year. As a last post, I’ve decided to write about what I’ve learnt during my time writing for the Life @ UofT blog.
1. Health and wellness is about balance
In my very first post, I talked about the importance of balance in maintaining health and wellness. Writing for the blog has only strengthened my belief in that perspective. I think that the most stressful times in the life of a student are the times when we are most unbalanced. For example, think about midterms and exams—we are often under exercised, under slept and over-caffeinated. To keep down our stress levels and maintain balance despite a busy student schedule, a good method is to…
2. Plan, plan, plan
For example, set up a schedule. If you’re aiming to exercise regularly, schedule it. For all your assignments, estimate how much time will be needed and then build in a cushion and start working on them in advance rather than of rushing last minute and forgoing sleep. Don’t get me wrong, I love spontaneity. However, some structure is essential to maintain balance. Of course, it is possible to be spontaneous even with structure in our lives. For example, sometimes during my gym time, I’ll decide to go for an impromptu game of squash instead of my usual weight-training routine.
3. Skimping out on your health and wellness will add up
If you’re anything like me, I am always looking for shortcuts whenever I am tight on time; whether I decide to cut back on the amount of exercise and sleep I get, amongst other things that might not have made it to my priority list that week. But it adds up. Cutting down on exercise and sleep can leave you feeling tired, unwell and in a mental fog. If the effects don’t show now, it can show later on in life. Be sure to prioritize sleep and fitness in your daily schedule.
4. Always try new things!
I’ve always loved trying new things. It has been great writing for the blog because it has introduced me to many more activities, events, groups and issues related to health and wellness than I would have been exposed to otherwise. It also made me realize how essential it is to keep trying new things because of all the learning that can come from these experiences. I have become engaged in and exposed to ideas for maintaining my health that really work for me! Try something new and figure out what works for you.
5. It’s not easy, but it’s achievable
Nobody’s perfect. Sometimes I find that all-nighter is inevitable, and so is having mac n’ cheese instead a well-balanced meal. However, it’s possible that we can maintain our overall balance and go after the healthy choices in our lives most of the time. Despite juggling classes, jobs and social lives, all it takes is a bit of effort, planning, and motivation.
And remember that at the end of the day, maintaining your health and wellness shouldn’t be seen as a chore, but an investment in you. Being healthy and well means you can think, work and feel better—it affects all aspects of your life, not only student life!