College can be a whirlwind of physical, emotional, and mental stress. From the “Freshman Fifteen” to the all-nighters during midterms, your body and mind can take a beating.

Well, lady, you are in control now. That can be a scary thought, but it can also be liberating!

You can takesteps to ensure that your college experience is a positive one. You can take charge of your health and happiness.

Well, here’s a list of seven affordable ways for women to be happy and healthier in college. They’re easy to fit into your busy schedule and designed to work with your tight budget. Your welcome!

1. Have a Support System in Place

For many women, college is their first experience living away from home for an extended period of time. WhatMom or Dad once helpedwith, you are now expected to handle all on your own.

The realization that you don’t have a backup can be unsettling. That’s why it’s important to keep in close contact with your family.

You might be states away, but you can find comfort through a quick video chat or phone call. Try to make this a weekly thing so you don’t lose touch.

It’s also important to find a good circle of friends on campus. Having reliable friends aroundcan help you feel more balanced.

Don’t forget:
In order to have good friends, you have to be a good friend, so make sure you are there for them as well.

If all else fails, or if your problems extend beyond a few rough days, swing by the campus counseling center. Your college has guidance counselors who can help you navigate any challenge that’s thrown your way.

2. Set Your Own Curfew

A lack of sleep can send your entire life on a downward trajectory.

Your body and mind will be running on empty. You’ll be hungry all the time because your body craves energy.

College is known for its no-sleep culture, but this isn’t for you.

Here are some ways to ensure you get enough rest:
No Cramming
Between classes, work, and hanging out with friends, studying can get pushed off to the last minute. Suddenly, you’re trying to get all that information into your brain the night before a 9 a.m test.

Rarely does this result in a good grade, and it certainly won’t result in a healthy, happy semester. Make time each week to review what you learned and prepare well in advance when you know a test is coming.

Stick to a Bedtime

College is known for its crazy parties. Frat houses and sorority sisters will be pulling you to make it to every one of them.

While there’s no harm in having a little fun, these parties can go on until the wee hours of the morning. You don’t want to have to sleep half the day to make up for your lost rest.

When you go to parties, set an alarm on your phone to remind you when to say your goodbyes. You need to be all tucked in by your scheduled bedtime. 

3. Find Healthy Fun

Speaking of parties:

College can be fun, but it can also get a little crazy. The stress of the week can make you more susceptible to drinking your cares away all weekend.

Binge drinking is not only bad for your health, but it is also dangerous. Especially as a woman, you need to be sure to keep your wits about you to protect yourself from harm.

A better way to have fun on the weekend is to participate in campus activities. This is a great way to make new friends, and many of the activities are designed to engage your creativity and keep you healthy.

4. Practice Safe Hygiene

Living in close quarters with other young women can open you up to some potential hygiene mishaps. You should take some precautions to keep you from contracting anything:
  • Wear flip flops in the shower.
  • Don’t share drinks or utensils.
  • Don’t share towels.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Get seasonal flu shots.
A sudden bout of pneumonia or the flu can really put a damper on your semester. So, do whatever you can to keep yourself healthy during the school year.

5. Find a Way to Fit Exercise In Your Schedule

I know, the last thing you need is another task on your to-do list. But, finding time to exercise can keep you feeling your best.

You don’t have to lift weights in the gym (although it doesn’t hurt), but you should find little ways to exercise throughout the day.

You can walk to school, take the stairs instead of the elevator, or join a yoga class. There are probably lots of classes available on your campus, so check out your dorm memo board or swing by the fitness center to see what’s available.

And, speaking of the gym:

This is one of the best campus resources available to you. You can use the track, the weight room, and the pool if they have one — all for free!

6. Make Time for Yourself

It can be hard to balance your new college life. Things can get hectic and stressful. In times like this, it’s all the more important to make self-care a priority.

Every day, make sure to set aside some time to relax. Whether you watch Netflix on the couch or read in the park, it’s important to have some alone time to recharge.

You might also consider setting aside one day a week for yourself. Fill that day with nothing but enjoyable things. No emails, homework, work, or chores are allowed on your day.

Stress not only leads to mental exhaustion, but it can also cause physical illnesses. So, don’t wait until you’re overwhelmed to start practicing self-care.

7. Get Off Campus

Sometimes, your dorm room walls can feel like they are closing in. Even the quad can begin to feel small. When it seems like your world is shrinking, it’s time to get off campus.

Go out to see a movie or take a trip to the beach. Getting out in the real world can help remind you of why you are working so hard in school.

You want to have a successful future so that you can enjoy the finer things in life. It can be easy to lose sight of this fact when you don’t get out and see the bigger picture.

In Conclusion

College can be scary, but it doesn’t have to be. Withhealthy habits and a positive mindset, you can avoid the burnout and weight gain that many college girls go through.

You got this, girl. Carpe this Diem!

Author Bio:

Susie is the General Manager of Copper Beech at Auburn.