Back to School Mental Health Items for the College Student
Are you an anxious college student or do you know one? If so, I’ve compiled a back to school supplies list specifically designed with the anxious student in mind. You won’t find the usual backpack or pens on this list; instead, this is a list of items to help you manage anxiety while away at college.
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Let’s take a look!
Have you tried a weighted blanked? If you live with insomnia while away at college or any time of the year, a weighted blanket might help. Pressure on your body from a weighted blanked can have the same effect as a massage: it stimulates the release of the neurotransmitter serotonin that helps you to feel calm and increases your sense of well-being. This blanket is 60″ by 80″ and includes a cover, making it a good choice to add to your back to school supplies list.
A necklace like this dreamcatcher essential oil diffuser can help you to breathe in the scent of an essential oil when you are feeling stressed. If you’ve never tried aromatherapy, know that it’s an evidence-based practice; lavender has been shown to help reduce anxiety. This necklace or others similar to it offer a portable way to carry aromatherapy with you during your college classes.
This simple bullet journal has a spiral binding and 8.” x 11″ size, making it perfect to take along to your classes and slip in your backpack with other binders and college supplies. Bullet journaling can help with anxiety at college by helping you track healthy habits and write about your day. Art therapy is also a good outlet for your emotions, and a bullet journal is a simple way to get started; this is a perfect item for you back to school supplies list.
If you’re going to start bullet journaling, you’ll want to get a set of pens to make your writing and illustrations pop. This is a good starter set to bring to college if you are anxious and looking for a creative outlet. You might even meet some new friends if they notice your creativity.
If you struggle with social anxiety or other mental health issues and will not have the support of a therapist while away at college, you may wish to look at investing in Betterhelp online therapy. They have financial aid for low-income earners, so it may cost less than you think to have access to a therapist online 24/7. If you’d like to learn more, read my complete post and review of Betterhelp.
If you like to read books but don’t want to lug around a bunch of print books, an Audible membership might be the right choice. I was confused for a long time about what an Audible membership gives you so here it is in a nutshell: for a monthly fee, you get an audiobook app with a free audiobook each month.
You can also purchase other books at a 30% discount. All audiobooks you purchase are yours to keep forever. You can make Audible worthwhile by choosing titles that are higher priced for your monthly book, and then taking advantage of lower cost titles (some as low as 99 cents). Unused credits can also be rolled over from month to month.
If you’re going to be listening to Audiobooks, you’ll need a set of headphones as well. Consider something like these noice cancelling headphones if you’re looking to block out distractions while at college. These ones are affordable enough for the college student to add to their back to school supplies list.
If you’re bringing aromatherapy to your class, you’ll probably want to have it in your dorm room too! Choose an essential oil diffuser such as this pretty glass one to diffuse lavender or other scents that will help you to relax as you study or at bedtime.
Add some lavender oil to your shopping list to put in your diffuser and your necklace! This set of two will probably last you the whole year so it’s a good item to add to your back to school supplies list.
A fitness tracker like this one can help you track your heart rate, steps, calories burned, active minutes, and sleep log so you can make sure you’re following healthy habits that will allow you to better manage your anxiety. Be sure to add a fitness tracker to your back to school supplies list if you don’t already have one!
Drinking your daily water is important for your health, and an inspirational water bottle that shows you how much to drink makes it so much easier. Bring this one to class and keep it with you throughout the day to make sure that you stay hydrated and drink your daily water.
Ashwagandha has been shown effective in helping to reduce anxiety. If you’re worried about stress due to exams, presentations, essays, etc., a supplement with ashwagandha could help. This is an easy thing you can add to your self care routine to make sure that your anxiety is kept under control.
Long nights spent studying could lead to more stress and anxiety if you’re not careful. A heated neck wrap like this one could be good way to unwind after a long study session. The lavender scent will also help to reduce anxiety at the same time.
Meditation and mindfulness are known to help reduce anxiety. This book (and the Headspace app) are good choices to help quiet your mind and feel more calm in as little as 10 minutes a day. Any Puddicombe is the voice of Headspace and a former Buddhist monk who has a goal for everyone to take 10 minutes of out their day to practice mindfulness.
This journal is designed to help you deal with perfectionism, which can be a problem if you have social anxiety. If you struggle a lot with feeling not good enough or that you’ve lost touch of who you really are, who you want to be, or where you want to go in life, this journal could be helpful.
Of course every college student needs a good planner to stay organized. Have you seen the different printable products available from Shine Sheets? I like planners that you can print at home because that means you can reuse them as many times as you want and customize the order of pages. You can even have it printed and bound at Staples or other copy store if you don’t have a printer. This type of planner also makes a great gift: print one for yourself and make a copy for an anxious friend!
Shine Sheets also has a number of mental health printables for the anxious college student including a thought workbook, positivity journal, anxiety journal, and self-care planner. You can get the best deal with their anti-anxiety bundle.
That’s my round-up list of items every anxious college student should consider. Of course you’ll need to make your own back to school supplies list based on your circumstances, but be sure to consider items that support your mental health as this will be critical to your academic success!