If you have juggled a busy schedule in high school (and who hasn’t?!), you are probably used to managing your time and social life well. But in the midst of a crazy or full calendar, healthy habits and even your emotional health can really fall to the wayside. These things will only become harder to manage as you head to college or prepare to leave home, so having a good routine is key to a beautiful and full life as a young adult. Here are some of our best ways to establish and maintain routines that are realistic, as well as fun!
A Routine for Skincare: This is a BIG and important one that you may not have thought about. Many high schoolers and college students neglect or even damage their skin without realizing it, and they pay the price later on with age spots, wrinkles, and sun spots. Getting into a steady routine of great skincare is something you will never regret. It doesn’t need to be fancy, but we recommend for nighttime: always removing makeup before sleep, washing with a gentle cleanser, changing your pillowcase often, and applying a gentle moisturizer. During the day: Wash your face with clean water in the morning, apply sunscreen (yep, daily!) Even if you aren’t going to be in the sun, or choose a foundation with SPF.
A Routine for Sleep: You may be reading this and laughing…wondering “what’s sleep?!” Even if you’re not getting many Zzz’s these days, it’s a good idea to get yourself onto somewhat of a schedule. Our tips: Set a time when you can try to get to bed consistently, even if it’s not always the same. Experts recommend about a minimum of 8-9 hours of sleep per night for the average high school and college student. When you get ready for bed, a relaxing environment is going to be key, including something like: essential oils diffused (lavender or a sleep blend), a sleep mask or headphones to block out noise, and most importantly, turning off your phone and logging off social media to help your brain settle down. Research has shown that turning off devices like a television and smartphone should be done an hour before you settle down for bed.
A Routine for Work or school: Feeling organized is something that can really reduce your stress level, but it can feel overwhelming to make a true plan for meals, transportation, and your homework or work assignments. The main thing that can help keep you on track is making each day the one for a different task. Here is a sample schedule you could try: Monday: grocery shopping and/or meal prepping (cooking simple proteins and carbs to reheat through the week), Tuesday: laundry and catching up on chores like mopping or cleaning the bathroom, Wednesday: errands outside your home or dorm, such as returning library books, any shopping that’s not groceries, paperwork to turn in like applications or misc. This is your “catch up day”. Thursday: the day to organize your school or work assignments and homework, doing research, gathering supplies for any projects, etc. Friday: Rest day. Saturday and Sunday: Self-care, homework if applicable, and kitchen cleaning. This may feel like a lot, but it’s very doable if you can stick to a schedule and even include a friend for accountability.
A Routine for Your Health: This is one of the most important aspects that many young people ignore. The first thing you can do is head to your doctor and have your blood drawn (we know, it’s unpleasant!), and see if you have any iron or vitamin deficiencies. Then, you’ll want to get a good regimen of vitamins and supplements (you can find these at your standard store like Target), and yes, you can use one of those little daily pill containers to keep track of them. Next, you’ll want to schedule your annual gynecological or physical doctor’s appointments ahead of time, and lastly, exercise at least three times a week. It doesn’t have to be anything super strenuous, but you should consider linking up your Fitbit or Apple Watch with a friend or classmates to help keep this goal!