Tag Archives: activities

Staying Busy and Happy During Quarantine

By Gina Samec

[3 minute read]

For many of us, this summer, which was once full of travel plans and internships, has been reduced to three months of uncertainty. It’s been a strange transition for me to go from a structured week of class and extracurriculars to feeling directionless. Everywhere I turned this semester there was an irksome reminder that I was falling behind. When I checked Linkedin, my peers were posting about their remote summer internships. When I checked my inbox, I was receiving emails from career websites about how to stay competitive in the current economy. At first, I felt overwhelmed and defeated that I wouldn’t have something to put on my resume for this summer. However, I realized that most people I know are in the same situation as me. Instead of stressing over something that I have no control over, I can put my energy towards doing things that make me happy. For those of us who have the privilege to relax this summer, this is a great opportunity to do things we haven’t set aside time for in the past because we were too preoccupied. Here are some ways you can pass the time during quarantine.

Dance Workouts

Sitting or lying down all day has become the norm. However, it isn’t ideal for our health. If you hate the gym and don’t have motivation to work out, a dance workout is a really fun way to stay active without it feeling like a chore. Thanks to Youtube, there are plenty of free workout videos which are a great replacement for attending a real class. Here are some youtubers I enjoy who have been posting fun dance workouts: MadFit, The Fitness Marshall, and MYLEE Dance.

Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash
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Movie Recommendations

By Jose Sanchez

Hell or High Water

The phrase “Come hell or high water” means that no matter what happens, nothing will stop you from achieving a goal. The movie, “Hell or High Water,” is great for those who love action, crime, and learning about the US.

It explores Texas, it’s people, their struggles, and everything they are willing to do to succeed. In a way I think it’s very good for international students. It truly fleshes out its characters while still minting traditional roles that repeat in old western films. It is also never afraid to address issues of racism in a manner of fact way that is also quite humorous. It also very obviously highlights the decline of rural America and its struggle to remain relevant in a changing economy.

If you have ever seen any western movie like “No Country for Old Men” or “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly,” you are sure to enjoy this one. From what I’ve seen international students tend to be rather familiar with old western movies.

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How to De-Stress During Midterm Season

By Hannah Hunt

Now that the first few weeks of school are behind us, we’re headed into everybody’s (least) favorite time of the year: midterm season. When exams and projects start building up, it can be hard not to wallow in stress. However, working yourself up too much over midterms is detrimental to your mental and physical health (and often doesn’t help your performance, either). Here are some of my best tips on how to de-stress around exam time and to keep you feeling your best!

  1. Go outside

A little bit of sunshine and fresh air can really do wonders for your stress levels, and there are some amazing spots around the USC campus where you can relax and forget about your exams. For example, the Exposition Park Rose Garden is a hidden gem just right across the street from campus– all the colorful roses and sparkling fountains make it a perfect place to stroll or read a book

2.   Get some food

When you feel the work piling on, comfort food is what you need. No matter what your favorite cuisine is or what you’re craving, you’re bound to have plenty of options in Los Angeles! There are some really yummy restaurants on campus, like Seeds in campus center or CAVA in the Village, but don’t be afraid to go off campus for a special treat either– Salt and Straw ice cream in Santa Monica is a favorite!

3.  Go on an adventure

If you’re worried about exams, sometimes getting off campus is the best thing to do. Think about the places that make you happy or get you excited: maybe it’s the beach, a museum, or a theater. If you don’t know where you want to go, just turn to the Internet to see if you can find something interesting going on that you want to try out (in Los Angeles, you can always find something!). Spontaneous “field trips” are great to take your mind off your stress, and giving yourself some time off campus gives you a fresh perspective when you do return back to school.

4. Talk to people

Even though sometimes all you want to do is be by yourself, when you start to feel stressed that’s actually a great time to hang out with friends. Surrounding yourself with friends will remind you that you’re not alone, and is guaranteed to leave you feeling better than you would if you just holed yourself up in your room. Ask a friend to grab coffee, or to do a fun activity with you– chances are they’ll be just as grateful for the opportunity to take a break from studying!

5. Make a schedule

It’s important to take your mind off your studies occasionally, but sometimes (especially as ambitious USC students) stress just won’t go away until your work is finished. To help speed up that process, try making “to-do” lists or schedules where you prioritize assignments and space out blocks of time to work on them throughout the day. The schedule will keep you organized, as it’s harder to procrastinate when you’ve already blocked out what you want to work on — this intentional use of time will help you feel productive, so at least you can end each day feeling a little more accomplished. Of course, be sure to schedule in breaks and time to decompress, so you keep your mind fresh!

Featured image by Espacio Mas Instante on Unsplash

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