Tag Archives: lifestyle

Managing Stress in College

By Cheryl Mota

College can get overwhelming at times with homework, exams, classes, work, and balancing a social life, which can take a toll on a person’s mental health. Stress in college is often overlooked as non-existent and unimportant but in reality stress affects most students during at least one point in their college studies. 

Although not all forms of stress are bad, it’s important to find ways to help manage and control it at a healthy level. Little changes you make in your life can help improve your mental health, it’s important to change your routine and not be stuck in the same negative mindset every day.

I always find it helpful when I plan out my day and write down every important task I need to complete that day, that way I am able complete it on time and not stress out about it in the future. I also try to stay off technology as much as I can, in order to focus on completing my work and not procrastinate, this has helped me tremendously in preventing unnecessary stress.

Aside from planning and staying off technology, a great way to help create a healthier routine in your life is to go outside and explore nature. I always find it relaxing when I go out for walks or runs every morning especially when I go out on hikes and focus on the beauty and peacefulness of nature rather than on my stressors. Exercising is also a great way to help alleviate stress, even exercising for just 10 minutes every day can help bring your stress levels down. 

Take advantage of on campus workshops and support groups that USC offers to its students. For example, USC’s Engemann Student Health Center offers various workshops and support groups led by counseling service staff that are tailored towards student’s specific needs. Ranging from calming anxiety, mindful well-being, social confidence, and of course stress management. The workshops are made to help USC students learn new skills and approaches to improve or manage their stress and adversities. I can personally say that the workshops and counseling that the Engemann Student Health Center offers has helped me better manage and my stress and problems. 

Most importantly, you are not alone! Don’t ever feel that you are the only one going through stress. It’s important to remember that there are various forms of resources and support available to you, whether it is through USC, your family, or even nature, you should always take advantage of the options available to you in order to help manage and prevent stress.

Featured image by JESHOOTS on Unsplash

Cheryl is a senior studying Political Economy with a minor in Forensics and Criminality. She is a Mexican American from Oxnard, California, in addition to being fluent in English and Spanish she loves to learn new languages and experience different cultures. Cheryl enjoys baking, spending time with her dogs, and meeting new people.

What is Powerlifting?

By Dennis Wu

Last semester, I picked up a new fitness hobby called powerlifting.  According to the International Powerlifting Federation, powerlifting is defined as a strength sport made up of three attempts at maximal weight for three lifts: squat, bench press, and deadlift. The goal of powerlifting is to lift the most weight possible for each of the three lifts. The summation of the best attempts for each of the three lifts is the final score a competitor receives.

Squat

The powerlifting squat begins when the announcer yells, “the bar is loaded”. Then, a competitor has one minute to un-rack the bar.  When the competitor is read to squat, the competitor makes eye contact with the referee.  The referee will yell “squat”. Then, the competitor must squat down until the hip joint is below the knee joint. After that the competitor can squat back up and re-rack when the referee yells “rack”.

Bench Press

The powerlifting bench press also begins when the announcer yells, “the bar is loaded.” Then, the competitor has one minute to begin the lift. The competitor is allowed to un-rack the bar but must wait for the referee to yell “start” before the competitor can lower the weight. When the bar is touching the body, the competitor must wait for the command “press”. Then, the competitor can drive up the bar to lockout. When the command “rack” is given, the competitor may rerack the bar.

Deadlift

The last lift is the deadlift. This lift also begins when the announces states, “the bar is loaded”. However, there is no start command. The competitor must begin within one minute. The competitor must stand up with the weight and when the referee yells “down”, the competitor may place the weight back down with both hands on the bar.

Conclusion

To summarize, powerlifting has become my new fitness hobby. Powerlifting is comprised of the three main lifts: squat, bench press, and deadlift.  The final score of a powerlifting competition is comprised of the best weights for each of the three lifts.

Featured image is author’s own

Dennis graduated USC with a degree in Human Biology, with an emphasis in Applied Physiology, and a minor in Occupational Therapy. He was born in Belgium and moved to the U.S. at the young age of 5, so Dennis had experienced numerous cultures around the world. Once in the U.S., he moved around quite a bit, living in multiple cities in Arizona, Texas, and California. Dennis speaks three languages- Mandarin Chinese, Flemish, and English. Ss a student, he loved playing basketball; he’s been playing since he was five years old, but his greatest passion in life was fitness and the pursuit of progression. Dennis always sought to improve himself – to become the best version he can be, not only physically but also mentally. Dennis was also a certified personal trainer at USC Lyon Center and worked with numerous international clients. He also worked as a tutor for mathematics and various sciences with numerous volunteer organizations around campus.

Mental Health Exercises

By Eun Soo Jackie Kim

Happy finals season! As the fall semester approaches its endpoint, classes are in full swing, extracurricular activities are becoming more demanding, and the constant search for a career path is becoming more nebulous. These factors of school life, coupled with pressure from society, family obligations, and the desperate attempt to maintain a social life while squeezing in at least a handful of hours of sleep at night are enough to push a student overboard. An important aspect of maintaining a healthy school life comes to the spotlight particularly during the midterm season, as academic, social, and emotional pressures start to build up: mental health.

Although at a school like USC, physical health is frequently emphasized and encouraged, oftentimes, mental health is forgotten. As an intangible, invisible aspect of a person’s well-being, it is understandable why mental health is not at the forefront of health discussions. However, just like working out at the gym, or going for a quick jog around the neighborhood, your mental health needs consistent exercise too, especially during such a stressful time like now! Follow these tips listed below to take a step back, relax, and focus on why and where your mind is overworked, so that you can come back refreshed, ready to tackle the challenge of a balanced college lifestyle.

  1. When you’re feeling less confident, write out a list of accomplishments and achievements from the past year that you can reflect on and be proud of yourself for. You’ll start to realize how long the list will get.
  2. Build up a support group who will be there for you when times are tough. They don’t need to be physically present, but it’d be nice to reach out for a quick phone call, or a nice cup of coffee when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
  3. During particularly tough days, begin the day with some stretching or a five-minute meditation. Some links to helpful resources can be found at Mindful USC’s website: http://mindful.usc.edu/
  4. Treat yourself to a mental break at least once a day by going out to your favorite ice cream place, going for quick run, watching a short TV show, with no distractions (e.g. homework) at hand.
  5. Set boundaries for yourself—USC is an amazing university so many resources and opportunities, but as one individual, it is impossible to do be involved in everything. Understand this, and allow yourself to breathe and focus on activities that matter the most to you.
  6. Write out a prioritization list for the week by listing out all the things you need to get done, and when you will get them done by. I found that a week long list is neither too short nor too long, and allows me to focus on the details but also the big picture very well!
  7. There’s always going to be someone better or someone worse than you in everything you do—come to peace with this fact, and allow yourself to excel in your own way.
  8. Realize when things are too challenging to a point when you need help—the USC health center is always available for therapy appointments, and they will be happy to direct you to additional resources near to campus as well.
  9. Keep in mind that mental and physical health go hand in hand. A little bit of exercise can be an immense mood booster, and a little mindfulness practice can do wonders for your physical activities. Try to remember the duality and balance.

Featured image from WallpaperSafari

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