March 5, 2012

HEALTH, NUTRITION AND WELLNESS: Time to Take a Personal Rave

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Even though time stands still in my 2:55, the semester is passing quicker than Ruloff’s is taking IDs. The second round of prelims is coming up soon and the need for stress relief for Cornell students is real.   When re-reading and re-writing PowerPoints and lecture notes at 1AM is not helping you retain any of the information on which you will be tested the next day, the following break from this stressful cycle is crucial.

Set your books down. It’s time for the 10-minute dance party.

This is ideal for home-based studying.  A mere “ATTENTION APARTMENT MATES” is sure to gather your roommates quite quickly. They might assume that you-know-who texted you back or someone found your wallet, but probably won’t turn down your dance party invite either. If you face opposition, get that iHome up to maximum volume and hope your neighbors wear earplugs.

Playing 2-3 songs is often enough to release endorphins to improve your mood, laugh ridiculously hard, practice your innovative dance moves before you unveil them at Pixel, and get your exercise in for the evening. Allowing yourself the time to relax will lower the cortisol levels in your body and leave you feeling less stressed.  Research shows  that recall of information is typically reduced when high levels of cortisol are present in the body due to high stress, so it is beneficial to step away from the books and relax.

It is also a great idea to plan ahead for this dance time. The LA times reports that time spent busily planning a vacation makes people happier than having no vacation plan.  Looking forward to that mini dance-vacation can infuse much-needed stress relief into your studies. This means mass text your roommates or leave a sticky note for your dorm-mates that at 1:35 AM a dance party will commence and that he/she better pick a song ahead of time and wear something comfortable.

In a library? Grab a friend and go to a socially acceptable location to breathe louder than the vent and dance around to Rihanna on your iPod.

Alone? Not a problem. Just lock the door and maybe use your iPod.

Here are some stress-busting songs to get you started:

My Body – Young the Giant

Six Foot Seven Foot – Lil Wayne

What Doesn’t Kill You (Stronger) – Kelly Clarkson

All I Ever Wanted – Basshunter

You’ll Find A Way (Remix) — Santogold

I Don’t Feel Like Dancing — Scissor Sisters

Tess Nelson is a junior in the College of Human Ecology. She can be reached at tnelson@cornellsun.com. Health, Nutrition and Wellness appear on Tuesdays.

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Original Author: Tess Nelson

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