Healthy and Happy – Leanne Kopec

This past week or so I have been just a little bit under the weather.  Of course this would happen right at the end of the semester with finals and all of the things I have to do before graduation!  All semester I have prided myself on being very healthy.  Because I have been eating right and exercising, I did not get sick all semester or during the popular cold season.  So I was especially frustrated when I began to get a sore throat and feel a bit fevery last week.  Whatever little bug I had must not have been too bad though because I really only felt sick for about a day, but since then I have had a cough.   My roommate, unfortunately, got it really bad and she was in bed for days. 

So, especially with finals coming up at that point, we talked a lot about what was important in order for us to get better and stay healthy and vibrant for the stretch of finals and whatnot ahead of us.  A lot of this is very important all throughout college, as well, even when you’re not feeling sick.  I think that the main reason I started to get a little sick was because of stress.  It’s really amazing what a toll on your body stress can have.  So first, it is important to plan time for yourself; do whatever it is that you do that allows you to unwind; for me this is running and yoga, having a nice chat with a close friend, or simply just relaxing and maybe watching a movie.  This might be different for everyone but just make sure that whatever you choose is something that can help your body heal a little from the stress and can rejuvenate your mind.  Second, sleep!  Sleeping is either really hard or really easy when you get to college.  In other words, sometimes you sleep a lot and sometimes it feels like you can’t or don’t have time to sleep at all.  This can either be for social or academic reasons, but regardless sleep is so important! Find a balance that works for you and allows you to get the amount of sleep that you need. For me, the third key to my every day health and feeling good is what I am eating.  If I eat junk for a day I literally feel tired and have no motivation.  However, if I am eating well, I require less sleep in general and can be awake and focused all day.  Before I started getting sick last week, I knew I wasn’t eating right.  That, combined with stress, of course I was going to feel under the weather!  And, I know this sounds cliche, but being happy and smiling will improve your health as well as your motivation.  Really all of these factors work together, they can support each other, however, if one is missing or lacking, it may be harder to achieve the others.  

It is all about finding your own balance.  During the adjustment period going into college remember to concentrate on yourself, listen to your body, and find the things that work for you.  Also, I think that this is something that everyone should return to every now and again to assess ourselves and make sure that we are doing what we need to do to stay healthy!

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