Meditation can improve mental health 1024x683

Sometimes amongst the hustle and bustle of college, we forget how to take care of ourselves. Not only is physical health at greater risk, but mental health as well. The brain is more vulnerable, and people tend to be more emotional. People try to find alone time just to relax and find a happy state of mind, but even when we are in solitude, our minds still work and make us tired. Thats why its important to find out how to reach a state of zen despite always having to sleep in the same room as someone or always hearing the busy streets outside of your window.

First, find a nice place to settle yourself into for a little bit. Whether it be your dorm room, a private library study room, or out on the grass in the middle of campus, find a place where you can be comfortable.

Next, go alone to this place. If your roommate won’t leave the room, plan it out so when they go to class you can have an hour to yourself in your dorm room. If you choose to go somewhere other than your room, bring headphones.

While self mediating, its important to target each sense individually. Sight, touch, smell, sound, and taste.

The most pleasing colors to the eyes are light blue, light grey, light pink, an other softer colors. Keep colors like bright red, orange, or yellow out of your dorm room, they will higher your blood pressure without you knowing it. Try having a light blue bed sheet, or a blanket you can lay down on in the middle of a patch of grass.

The most relaxing texture is a soft fuzzy object, which can be a blanket, or a stuffed animal, or a form of comfortable clothing (maybe a sweatshirt that has good memories?). Another texture that tends to help relax people is anything squeezable (a beanbag, slime, foam, etc.)

Scents appeal to everyone different, but the top relaxing scents are lavender, sandalwood, jasmine, and eucalyptus.  This can be accomplished through incense, oil diffusers, candles (if open flames are allowed), or as simple as a wall air freshener. If you are traveling out from your dorm room try spraying essential oils onto your clothing or skin to carry the smell with you.

Sound isdifferent for everyone. Scientifically, a low harmonizing melody is usually more appealing to the ear drum neurons. However, most people appreciate music they are most familiar with to give them a sense of comfort. You like Kodak? Meditate to Kodak, I support you 100%. You like The Beatles? Go for it. My kryptonite is Cage the Elephant. There is no right and wrong. Unless you try and mediate to heavy metal… I’m not too sure how that would work out.

Finally, the beautiful science of our taste buds. This is simple. Chocolate is the answer to anything. You think I’m joking? Chocolate releasing endorphins, which make you happier and calmer. Try it, seriously! Other than that, just about any sweet or familiar taste will release endorphins. Chocolate chip cookies may remind you of good memories, creating a good vibe. Try out a few foods, it can’t hurt!

Using a few of these steps have seriously helped me. My dorm rooms has a lot of soft hues, mostly light blue. My main blanket is a soft and fuzzy  soft blue (what a surprise). We have an oil diffuser where you can put in any essential oil you want/have. I am constantly playing music that reminds me school free summers and good memories. And who doesn’t have chocolate on hand, always??

Honestly, sometimes I just throw on some headphones and plop myself down in the middle of the main part of campus where the grass is. Just soaking up some sun, remembering the good times can help more than you think.


Isabel Murphy

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