With the hubbub of the second semester upon us, balancing personal priorities along with classes, friendships, and your health can get overwhelming. At a school which boasts “the happiest students in the nation,” some students have a harder time admitting they are struggling, which is why it is important to set aside time for yourself. And as fun as New Orleans is, after a busy Mardi Gras season, sometimes all you need is a break from the craziness. Luckily, you won’t have to look far. While campus can feel  busy or hectic at times, there are many little spots to take refuge if you look close enough. Here are a few ways to practice self-care while on campus at Tulane.

Visit outdoor spots

There are lots of cool and lowkey spots on campus where one can study or just chill and take a nap. Visit the Newcomb Pottery Garden between Newcomb Hall and Woldenberg Hall to see some works of the art department, complete with a turtle pond. Another garden can be found behind Wall Residential College looking out upon residential views of Willow street. Closer to Broadway and situated next to Rogers Memorial Chapel is a group of tables underneath the canopy of a large oak tree–perfect for a nap. One of Tulane’s more photogenic bench spots can be found on the Academic Quad underneath the tree in front of Mussafer Hall. Another great bench spot is the outdoor classroom next to Norman Mayer Hall, complete with a chalkboard where anyone can leave little drawings and messages. Audubon Park, of course, is one of the greatest outdoor spaces and is right at our fingertips. Exploring the park and finding your secret spot is a great way to get some alone time.

Eat a sweet treat

I am personally a big advocate for this one. Even though it is a temporary moment of satisfaction, eating something sweet gives you a mood boost while also serving as a reminder that you deserve a little treat once in a while. The bookstore has a whole host of candy to choose from while the LBC has a little ice cream fridge in front of Wild Blue Sushi. During Mardi Gras season, PJ’s Coffee sells slices of king cake to add a little festivity to your day. There are many ways to treat yourself on and off campus. Exploring New Orleans’ food scene is also a great way to give yourself a boost every once in a while.

Meet a friend for coffee

I cannot count the amount of times when I have been stressed and spent some  time with a good friend who helped me put things into perspective. Meeting someone you’re close with or even someone you just met for a quick latte at PJ’s can be the perfect remedy for overwhelming thoughts.

Take a walk

Adorned with majestic oak trees, Tulane’s campus is nothing to shake a stick at. Walk through the A-quad or even venture one street off campus into the Freret neighborhoods to take in the beauty of Uptown New Orleans. State street is known for having some of the most beautiful houses to admire.

Take a class at Reily

Getting active is a great way to relieve stress, and Reily Fitness Center offers several classes that can help you do just that. Classes such as Yoga focus on restorativeness and meditation while Cardio Dance Party gets your heart pumping to some fun beats. Getting to the gym is always the hardest part, but it is proven to help with stress and anxiety!

Visit Tulane’s online self-care resources

Technically, this is something you can do anywhere, but, Tulane School of Social Work does provide resources such as guided meditation videos, activity suggestions, arts and entertainment recommendations and more. These are easy and accessible resources which can help you unwind and relax. Tulane also offers in-person counseling services if you or anyone you know needs someone to talk to. They can be found at 504-314-2277.

Ultimately, campus becomes what you make of it, whether that is a place of social activity, study grind, or sanctuary. It is always important to remember to prioritize your mental wellbeing no matter where you are, and I hope these tips can make campus a little more accessible in that sense.

Featured Image via Tulane University Facebook.

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