We’re halfway through the semester, and as homework piles up, midterms begin, and work gets busier than usual, students often forget to take care of themselves. Sometimes it seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day to do it all. Stress is common on college campuses, whether you’re remote or in-person, or a full-time or part-time student.
According to a study by the American Institute of Stress, eight out of 10 students are often stressed. Over time, too much stress can negatively affect students’ mental and physical well-being and this becomes a problem as they adjust to their new academic environment and attempt to form new relationships.
Exercise, counseling, making meaningful connections, drinking tea, and other activities can help relieve daily stress. Here are some tips, places, and resources near the University of Arizona campus that students can use to support self-care.
Campus Health Counseling and Psychology Services (CAPS)
The Campus Health Counseling and Psychology Services have many resources for students and their goal is to provide the UA community with the support it needs. On the CAPS website, a directory of mental health services and basic needs is available on campus and off campus. There are costs for some of the services offered by CAPS, but if this is a barrier, there are opportunities for financial assistance.
Hector Reyes, a mental health clinician and embedded counselor at the Guerrero Student Center, said establishing a sense of community is important for mental health. Students are an integral part of this learning community and Reyes encourages students to meet their professors and classmates. Reyes explained that mental health services come in many forms, from small things like drinking a glass of cool water to bigger steps like accessing counseling at CAPS.
“It’s about taking care of yourself, from a long bubble bath to just a few minutes of good deep breathing to remembering that oxygen he really needs to function at his optimal level,” Reyes said. “I always tell my students the easiest thing you can do is breathe, hydrate and rest.”
CAPS Zoom hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. at 3 p.m. Students can also access CAPS 24/7 support by calling 520-621-3334.
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Seven cups of fine Chinese teas
Students looking to unwind and rewind can do so at Seven Cups Fine Chinese Teas. The Tea Room, located in the Sam Hughes neighborhood, offers over 100 teas and a comfortable environment to rejuvenate.
After trying a cup of Longjing tea from a few international friends while attending UA, Austin Hodge was saddened that he couldn’t get this tea anywhere in the United States. He changed his career to focus on importing tea from China and soon opened Seven Cups. in 2004.
Andrew McNeill, General Manager of Seven Cups, shared that the store’s name comes from a poem written by Lu Tong of the Tang Dynasty. The poem describes mental and physical refreshment after having a cup of tea.
“Making tea in itself is kind of this mindfulness exercise, a mental health benefit,” McNeill said.
When brewing tea, people focus on the temperature and the amount of leaves, temporarily putting their worries aside.
Seven Cups is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Undisputed fitness and training center
Physical activity is another outlet for stress. Undisputed Fitness and Training Center is located downtown and is a one-stop-shop for martial arts and fitness.
Brandon Lacy, general manager of Undisputed Fitness and Training Center, shared that martial arts, particularly Brazilian jiu jitsu, has helped him deal with accumulated emotions.
“Things like anger and all that are common human emotions. As long as we let them out appropriately, they can be useful,” Lacy said. “They can be things that fuel the fire, so to speak, to get you in better shape and take care of yourself.”
Undisputed Fitness and Training Center offers a wide variety of classes for students and the Tucson community.
Campus Recreation Center
Students wishing to participate in physical activity as a form of self-care at no additional cost may review the services offered through UA Campus Rec. Centers. There are two Campus Rec. Centers, the NorthREC and the original Campus Rec. Each center offers free access to students enrolled in classes, as well as variously priced classes such as yoga, swimming, and guided excursions.
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