Student Wellness
Student Wellness

Be Well Blog

Check out our previous blog posts!

 

4/6/17 – Post #4: Social Media Use

As students, it can seem as if we live the majority of our lives on social media. It’s how we keep up with far away family, find out what our friends are up to on Friday night and learn about events going on around us.

While being connected can be a great thing, it can also feel overwhelming. When you see all your high school friends on vacation in Cancun, or find out that guy from your freshmen orientation class got a dream internship, it’s hard not to feel envious. While logically you know their lives aren’t as perfect as they seem, it can sometimes make you feel like you aren’t doing enough or having as much fun as everyone else. This isn’t true!

Here’s how to keep social media in perspective: 

Track your social media usage. Picking up your phone to check your Instagram notifications is almost a reflex at this point, so it’s hard to know how much time you truly spend on social media. Take a day to consciously pay attention to when you check your phone or scroll through Facebook during class. You might be surprised to see how much time you spend everyday on social media.

Realize everyone puts their best foot forward online. Rarely do people tweet that they failed a class or that their partner broke up with them. Instead, people choose to share happy moments, such as engagements and fun nights out. This doesn’t mean they live perfect lives without any challenges. It simply means this is what they are choosing to show the world. Keep this in mind before comparing yourself to others.

You’re more than the amount of likes you receive. Followers aren’t everything. Just because someone has thousands of Instagram followers does not mean they are any better or any worse than you are. You’re an awesome, worthwhile person, no matter how many followers you have!

At the end of the day, it’s only an app. While social media can seem like your life, it’s not. Your real life happens outside of your phone screen. While Snapchat, Instagram and all the other apps are a fun way to get new information, they’re just a service you choose to use. Remember, all these things are only phone apps that can be deleted whenever you want.

If you feel stressed, take a break! Don’t feel guilty for taking a break from social media if you’re feeling overwhelmed. Your friends will still post new Snapchat stories, even if you don’t view them immediately. You’re not missing anything! Take a break, focus on yourself and rejoin the digital world when you feel ready.

 

3/20/17 – Post #3: Financial tips for each year in college!

One aspect of wellness that many students forget to consider is financial wellness. As college students, handling a budget and managing your money can be difficult. There are so many things you want to do and buy that all cost money, not to mention paying for tuition and housing! It can be easy to let your spending get out of control and add another stressor to your life. Luckily, ISU has many resources to help you become financially responsible! Check out our guide on how to handle your money at each stage of your college career.

Freshman year. Your first year in college is a big transition in numerous ways. For most students, this is the first time they have lived away from home and the first time they have managed their own money. It’s very easy to spend money on things you don’t necessarily need, from extra coffee runs to a new outfit for every occasion. The best way to combat this is by creating a budget! Freshman year is the best time to get used to living on budget. Generally, you are spending less because your meals and housing are paid for if you live on campus.

Creating a budget isn’t as hard as it sounds and there are many websites and apps that can help. Click here for many greats tips and some of our favorite apps for managing money!

Sophomore year. This is the year many students start to get their first part-time college job. This is a great way to contribute to your savings account, pay a little on your student loans and have spending money left over! Before you start applying for jobs, carefully consider the hours the position requires (You don’t want to accidentally get scheduled during a class)!  On-campus jobs generally offer a lot of flexibility, but many off-campus ones do too. Some things to consider are how it will fit into your schedule and commuting time if you are going off campus. It can also be helpful to look for jobs that fit your major and will add experience to your resume. Apply for numerous positions and choose the one that best fits your needs!

Just because paying off student loans is a couple years away doesn’t mean you shouldn’t think about them. Sophomore year is a great time to start paying the interest that is accruing on your loans. Typically, this is only $20 or $30 a month but it can save you a lot of money in the future. Paying interest now keeps it from being added to your principal balance and accruing more interest. The Student Loan Education Office is a great resource to help you understand your student loans and how interest adds up!

Junior year. This is the year you can really focus on saving for your future. Many people often get internships the summer after their junior year, and sometimes these can be unpaid. If you begin to save your money at the beginning of the school year, you’ll have a nice sum to help you get through the summer and the rest of your senior year. Make sure to keep an eye out for internship scholarships. Many colleges offer scholarships for students who have unpaid internships.

Junior year is a great time to start thinking about your credit score! The first step is to educate yourself on what credit is, what things affect it and how to have a good one. Go here for more information!

Senior year. Congrats, you’ve made it to your last year! Now that you’re starting to apply for jobs in the real world, it’s time to think about how you’re going to pay off your student loans. It can be very overwhelming to see what you owe but luckily there are many resources to get you on the right track!  Now is a great time to schedule an appointment with the Student Loan Education Office (link http://www.loaneducation.iastate.edu/index)! They can help you choose your best repayment plan and help you create a budget with your new adult expenses like health insurance, loan payments and utilities!  While it can seem daunting at first, we know you can do it!

Being financially responsible can relieve a lot of stress on your student life so we encourage you to take control of your money now! If you have any questions, you can stop by our office or email us at studentwellness@iastate.edu.

 

3/13/17 – Post #2: Prepping for the Rest of the Semester

It’s getting to be the end of the spring semester here at Iowa State! With only eight weeks left, it’s time to prepare for all those projects and finals. But you can’t forget to take care of yourself during this busy time. Check out these tips below to help you maintain balance and wellness in all areas of your life during this busy time.

Check your grades. With about half the semester left, it is important to know how you’re doing in your classes. If you’re struggling, don’t be afraid to ask the professor or a classmate for help! There’s plenty of time to bring up or maintain your grades, so you can finish the semester the best you can.

Make a schedule. The end of the semester means projects, finals and class registration. It’s hard to remember so many important due dates, so schedule them out! You can fill out a physical planner, use an online service like Google Calendars or even use sticky notes to remind yourself of these important events. You’ll feel so much less stressed when you’re organized.

Take study break. The end of the semester tends to get super busy. While it’s important to do well in your classes, you also don’t want to get burnt out. Take a study break every once in awhile. You can catch up on Netflix, hang out with friends or make a homemade meal. Your mental health is important, so don’t forget about it!

Prioritize your time. With so many things on your schedule, it’s hard to know what to do first. Pause for a minute and think what needs to be done first. If you have an internship application due Friday, don’t start on your essay due two weeks from now. Sort things out by timeliness and necessity, and you’ll be able to manage everything you need to do.

Get enough sleep. Sleep is so important, especially for busy college students. It’s a huge part of your overall wellness, so try to limit the amount of all-nighters you pull. When you’re well rested, you’ll feel better and do better!

Good luck on the rest of your semester, everyone!

 

3/6/17 – Post #1: Welcome to the Be Well Blog

Welcome to the Be Well Blog by Student Wellness! This is a blog FOR students, BY students to help you on your wellness journey. We hope to provide you with content that can help you during your time here at Iowa State and beyond.  Student Wellness is all about helping you live your best life.  

There are eight main aspects of wellness that we focus on: emotional, environmental, financial, intellectual, occupational, physical, social and spiritual. These eight dimensions come together to help you create a life that is holistically balanced.  

As fellow students, we understand that student life is made up of many different aspects.  Our goal is to cover content and share our stories to help you in your journey. Feel free to send us a message on social media or our email to let us know what topics you would like to read about. We are so excited to begin helping our fellow Cyclones #choosewellisu.