Seven ways to compress the stress at home

Look at this list of destress tactics that may prove beneficial when struggling with online learning.

Liv Bohler

Starting the school year with Online Learning (NTI) hasn’t been the most ideal circumstance because of many reasons, one of them being that with school at home, it has become harder for students to separate themselves from what is for many a very stressful environment. Listed below are ways to alleviate stress levels!


Whether it is morning, noon or night, doing a simple exercise such as going on a job, a walk or watching a 10-minute workout video on Youtube can help you decrease your stress levels, improve your mood, allow you to sleep better and even improve your self-confidence. According to studies by Harvard Health, “Exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that are the body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators.” Even though you may be reluctant to get off the couch and get your blood pumping, making this a consistent part of your routine will lead to mental and physical improvements!

Post Exercise Joy
After completing her workout, Liv throws her hands up in joy. Photo by Liv Bohler.

Video Games

While video games may be considered time-wasting activities, they allow you to connect to others, even people who are on the other side of the world. In the middle of a global pandemic, this sought after quality is crucial to people who stay in their homes all day like many of the students attending Manual. Furthermore, many video games such as Splatoon 2 and Fortnite require a great deal of focus, drawing your attention away from school matters. In turn, providing many with a much-needed escape where they have the ability to create a sense of control.

Chew Gum

For many, to compress the stress it is necessary to get all of their assignments completed and out of their way. To gain the focus needed to complete these assignments, chewing gum can help improve alertness and create a more effective completion process. For the same reason that mints help when students are taking the ACT or SAT, chewing gum can help you remain attentive during NTI or when you’re completing your homework as it lowers cortisol levels. Cortisol is the primary stress hormone and lowering this hormone will allow you to better control your mood levels.

Interact with Pets

Completing your NTI at home allows you to spend more time with your pets at home and it is important to take advantage of this opportunity! Playing with a hamster, bunny, dog or cat can raise your serotonin levels or “happy hormone” and give you a sense of companionship. Even watching a fish swim around in their tank has been proven to calm your heart rate. Another positive that comes with pet interactions is the boost of vitality. These beneficial interactions are the reasons why puppies show up during finals week!

Listen to Music

While you may already listen to music regularly, such as when you wake up in the morning or when you go on a run, it is important to take a closer look at what type of music you are listening to. How fast or slow is the tempo? Is it in a major or minor key? Is the person singing with a deep baritone or a soprano? Is there singing at all? All of these factors can contribute to the mood that the music your listening to creates. For instance, techno music with faster tempos will raise your heart rate, while classical music that is slow and quiet will be more relaxing and lower your heart rate. Each type of music is needed for different scenarios such as if you only have a couple of hours left to submit an assignment and it is necessary to work at a fast pace, choose a fast tempo song. Also, if you’re in the mood, think about making a study or chill-down playlist.

Turn on your TV

Here is another opportunity to move away from your computer and find a different way to provide some entertainment! Find a new show on Netflix to binge or a movie that has finally made it to Prime Video; either option that you choose, make sure to go all in order to make sure it remains a passive activity. Unlike many of the options listed above, you don’t have to move to get the full experience. Just sit back, relax and enjoy the show. Although if you really want to stress less? I would advise you to steer clear of the news channels. 

Get Some Sleep

One of the reasons why NTI is so unique is because it has shortened the average school day. Instead of beginning at 7:40, a student’s first class would begin at 9:00 AM and the last class session ends ten minutes earlier than that of the normal schedule. According to studies by the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, the sleep patterns of a child have a direct impact on their academic behavior. Furthermore, the recommended amount of sleep for a teenager in high school is eight to ten hours, and with the change in the schedule, it may allow students to reach this quota more often.