Stressed? Of course you are. Show me a non-stressed Smithie and I’ll show you a cobra square dancing–it ain’t gonna happen. For those far too common moments when the stress threatens to overwhelm you, here are some of our favorite strategies to chill out, calm down, and get back to work.

1. PRIMAL SCREAM. Hundreds of Smithies screaming their heads off the day before exams start, what could be better for the nerves?

2. Massage. There’s nothing like someone pounding on your back working out your knots. Just make sure to give your massager a massage back.

3. Speak Jibberish. Sometimes it just helps to blurt a string of non-words. Best if done alone or in the company of close friends who will love you anyway.

4. Your hobby. What hobby, you ask. Any, you all have one. Cross-stitch, knit, play basketball, take pictures, alphabetize things, ride a bike. Anything.

5. Mind teasers. (WARNING: this only works if you won’t get easily frustrated if you can’t solve it right away).

6. Wake up early one weekend. Getting up before the rest of the house and doing the inane morning things early will make you feel so accomplished, promise. After brunch you’ll feel rejuvenated and confident enough to dive right back into the sea of work.

7. Laundry. It’s always a good thing. Your classmates, professors, and roommate will all appreciate. Plus, who doesn’t love the smell of freshly washed clothes?

8. Clean your room. Your roommate WILL love you for it. Chances are, if you’re this stressed, it’s probably pretty messy anyway. You may even find some long lost treasures.

9. Do something not requiring a brain. Watch a silly YouTube clip or part of a favorite movie or reread some of your favorite book.

10. Skip a club meeting. Don’t make a habit out of it, but they won’t kick you out, really. If one week is just too busy for clubs, let the leaders know that you’re taking a mini sabbatical and will be back later. You’re here for the classes first (at least parents hope).

11. Make a to-do list. This is a personal fav. At the end you’ll have a beautiful list of everything that needs to get done so you won’t have to worry about forgetting and you are allowed to feel extremely self-satisfied each time you cross something off.

12. Call home. Talk things over with someone you love. Sometimes saying your troubles out-loud makes them seem more manageable.

13. Seasonal activities. Jump in leaves, splash in a puddle, have a snowball fight, lie in the grass when it’s sunny.

14. A nice hot cup of tea or bowl of soup. I’ve been told it’s a great relaxer. As a non-tea drinker, I’m a little skeptical.

15. Take a long fast walk outside. The colder the air, the better. Think, don’t think, whichever. Just make sure to be out of the house and away from your paper for a half hour at least. Get your heartbeat up, fume, stew, and I guarantee you’ll feel better.


  1. thisinnocenceisbrilliant

    well-said i love it

  2. smithie11

    I love this blog! Thanks for the tips!

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