Self-Care on a Student Budget

Has the current state of the world’s affairs got you down? Me too. It seems like every time you turn your gaze toward a screen, it’s flashing with bad news. Sometimes you just need a break; a little bit of time to rejuvenate your will to fight for the causes that are, right now, taking a beating. But, if like myself, you are a student with a strict budget and not a lot of free time, it can be difficult to distract yourself with things like a night out or mini-vacation. If this is the case, I have compiled this list (just for you!) of simple and economic ways to help you indulge in a little self-care. Enjoy!

Plant an Indoor Garden

Bring some life back into your life! Planting an indoor garden is a great project to preoccupy the mind, especially during the winter months. All you need is a pot, soil, and seeds, all of which can be found a dollar store. Caring for something, even a plant, is great practice in caring for yourself. It’s so rewarding watching them begin to sprout and grow. If you don’t have the greenest thumb, just purchase some succulents (less than $10 at many convenience stores in the city) and give them a water every once in awhile. The plants will liven up your living space and leave you feeling refreshed!


Due to its heat and fragrance, tea can wield serious results in turning your frown upside down. It’s warmth and soft scent can help in creating feelings of calm and lightness. If you’ve found yourself unable to fall asleep, drinking chamomile tea before bed can help. If you feel like a little bit of luxury, David’s Tea has a great selection of blends crafted to help bring on the good vibes. I recommend Mother’s Little Helper ($7.98 for 50g) or Serenity Now ($8.98 for 50g) if you’re looking for help getting those z’s.

Set a Sleep Schedule

This can be a hard one, especially if like me (and Drake!), you come alive in the nighttime. However, setting a proper sleep schedule, that you actually stick to, can have magical effects on your mood, energy levels, and outlook. Having a good sleep every night can help improve your memory, elongate your life, and combat the bad sads. Try getting into bed an hour to a half-hour before you want to be asleep. Sip on some of that tea and do some reading. Give yourself the time to shed the day and drift off. Try to time it so that you get at least seven hours of rest. You’ll notice the difference right away.

YouTube Yoga

Yoga can be a great way to calm anxiety and slow your mind when life starts to move a little too quickly. However, studio yoga classes can get really expensive. Cut to YouTube Yoga! There are many channels on YouTube hosted by yoga instructors, with videos ranging from a few minutes to over an hour. One of my favourite channels is Yoga with Adriene.  She has a ton of videos to try, for beginners as well as experts. Try incorporating Yoga Sundays into your weekly routine, dedicating a solid half hour to the practice. It really makes a difference.

Do Something Nice For a Stranger

Next time you’re on public transit, offer your seat to someone. Next time you’re walking down the street and see someone trying to balance a million things while opening a door, open the door for them. Next time you see someone with nice shoes, say to them, “Hey! Nice shoes!” The random act of kindness doesn’t have to be a grand gesture. In fact, it is another cliché that says it’s the little things that matter. We take care of ourselves in order to have the fortitude to take care of others. Remember to be kind to yourself, so that you may have the strength to spread that kindness to anyone else who may need it.

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