It can be all too easy to get swept up in the stress and chaos of college life while you’re stuck in your room. Your mind keeps playing with all the things you need to do, even as you seemingly self-sabotage your efforts to do anything productive. 

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When this happens, it can help to have a few tricks on hand — such as these 10 ways to relax in your college room — so that you can recharge and refocus.

Take Deep Breaths

Everyone jokes about taking a deep breath to calm down for one main reason: it works.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed with work, stressed out, or frustrated, close your eyes and take several long, slow, rhythmic breaths in a row. Don’t think about anything other than just letting thoughts come in and out of your mind like pieces of dust floating by. Breathing deeply can help calm and focus you both physically and mentally.

Listen to Music

You might have some music on in the background already, so make sure to mix it up enough to make a difference. Find an Internet station that you find soothing; play one of your favorite albums; head to social media and spend a few minutes listening to new and unknown artists.

Play a Soothing App

You’re not the only one who needs creative ways to calm yourself down, and lots of programmers know it. Check out apps (especially free ones) that can help you focus your mind and relax a bit. It could be a mindless game or something musical. And it can be effective.

Play a Video Game

For some students, checking out and playing a video game as a form of escapism for 10 minutes can do wonders.

As long as you stick to a limited (and short) amount of time, playing video games can end up improving your productivity while also reducing your stress.

Read Something Mindless and Silly

Don’t be embarrassed by letting your mind tune out and read something completely unimportant, like the latest celebrity gossip. Just like a competitive athlete has to let his or her muscles relax, you need to let your brain check out every once in a while.

Decorate a Dorm Room

Add an indoor plant (or two). Even a small plant in a tiny container can add a bit of warmth and personality to a dorm room. Check out a local drug store, grocery store, or even a place like Target or Walmart for something small and easy to take care of.

Add (or change the) curtains. Chances are your dorm room comes equipped with, er, less-than-ideal blinds or window coverings. You can add an instant pop to your room by adding your curtains — or even making your own. Check out a thrift shop for curtains or, if you’re handy, for old sheets that you can drape creatively.

Add a small rug. Even if your dorm room has carpet, chances are it isn’t plush and welcoming. A small throw rug in a funky shape or color can instantly draw people into your room.

Add a desk lamp or side lamp with a nice shade. Gonna be up late studying? Your roommate probably doesn’t want the overhead light on until 3:30 in the morning. In this case, a reddit essay writing service says that a small desk lamp or side lamp is a nice touch; one with a pleasing lampshade is even nicer.

Keep it clean and make the bed. It’s amazing how much nicer a room looks after it’s been cleaned. A quick tidying up and straightening of your sheets and comforter can do wonders for making your residence hall room nicer.

Clean up and organize electrical cords. Computer, speakers, cell phone charger, light, printer, iPod, e-reader … that’s a heck of a lot of cords. Group them and use plastic ties or rubber bands to keep them organized — and out of sight.

Add photos in frames or on a corkboard. While most photos these days are electronic (on Facebook, on Instagram, on your cell phone, and your computer), there’s still something charming about an actual print. Consider printing a few of your favorite shots and rotating them through actual frames as the year progresses — or, if you still want to go the electronic route, consider letting a digital photo frame do the work for you.

Do a 10-Minute Yoga Routine

Yoga is so popular because it works wonders for a lot of people, and you don’t have to spend an hour in a yoga studio for it to work for you, too. Find a quick video and reward yourself with 10 minutes of good, quality breathing, stretching, and exercise.


If yoga isn’t your thing, you can still spend a few minutes stretching out in whatever ways to help get your blood flowing and your mind relaxing. As an added benefit, you’ll likely also get a small burst of energy that can help you make the final transition out of your stress zone.

Imagine Yourself Somewhere Else

If you’re feeling stressed out, treat yourself to a micro-vacation. Close your eyes and imagine yourself someplace amazing, like … on a beach. In a mountain lodge. On an adventure. Or, better yet, imagine yourself walking across the graduation stage, receiving your diploma. The experts from DoMyWriting emphasize that if you’re feeling overwhelmed with where you are, let yourself escape for a minute and go to where you’d ultimately like to be. Once you gain some perspective, you can refocus and get back to your task at hand — all without leaving your room, of course.

Turn Your Lights Down and Meditate

If it’s late at night, try dimming the lights or turning off all but a small desk lamp; if it’s in the afternoon, try closing some blinds or curtains. Either way, changing the lighting in your room and spending 10 or 15 minutes meditating can do wonders for your state of mind.

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