By Sally Greider, freshman

Exploratory major

Tips on how to take a deep breath and relax at the University of Florida.

When I first started to write this article, my initial response was to start laughing. De-stressed? Now? At the end of the second semester, when there are final exams in a few weeks and I have no clue what my summer plans are yet? As if.

But don’t lose hope just yet. In the process of checking out the ways someone can relax and clear their cluttered mind while at UF, I actually found quite a few of options that are doable, fun, and completely de-stressing. Hooray!

A hidden gem for the meditative mind: I had no idea that the architecturally stunning and beautifully serene Baughman Center existed. For those clueless, the Baughman Center is an elegant contemplation space located on campus at the intersection of Radio and Museum Road, right on the picturesque bank of Lake Alice. From far away, it looks like a chapel, but it’s actually a structure specifically made for private meditation, with occasional events being hosted there such as weddings and memorial services. The best part? Meditation hours are every Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Come out to enjoy beautiful scenery and clear your mind of all your troubles.

Baughman Center: 982 Museum Road, PO Box 112548, Gainesville, FL 32611-2548

Be well. Do well. GatorWell:
If you’ve been feeling a little too overwhelmed and are having trouble coping with everything on your plate, the UF Counseling & Wellness Center is full of awesome, helpful resources tailored to fit your particular stressful situations. I was surprised by just how many helpful things they offer.

Among their many services, the center offers free wellness coaches who will help you individually with managing your stress and teach you relaxation techniques. Someone else helping me not have a mental breakdown because I can’t decide which assignment to tackle first? I am most definitely interested. You can schedule an appointment with a wellness coach here!
The UF Counseling & Wellness center also offers free iRelax Audio Recordings and downloadable quick relaxation exercises to help you clear your mind on the go, specific advice on how to deal with end-of-semester stress (Yes, please!), and individual counseling. UF takes care of its students and recognizes that some college experiences (cough, chemistry, cough) can be a little too much to tackle without some stress relief.
To get a full list of all the UF Counseling & Wellness Center amenities, you can check them out at this website!

Everybody hates finals week, BUT ACTUALLY: The University of Florida knows everyone hates finals week, and the things they do to help us all power through our hardcore study sessions fueled by coffee and desperation are actually quite sweet.
Every finals week in front of Library West, there is a huge blowout of campus organizations trying to help students get the A, or at least pass the exam.  Last semester, there was free Redbull, late-night bagels and cream cheese, pastries, fun games and stress relieving activities, and best of all, puppies!!

Therapy dogs are brought in every finals week (sometimes during midterms, too). You can pet a puppy (or three) and feel all your troubles melt away. Library West will also periodically offer meditation sessions, yoga classes, and free back massages.

All of this almost makes the stress we go through as procrastinating college students bearable.

Still, it’s all really thoughtful and amazing that the university offers this to us.

There you have it! Try out one of these resources, or another one of your choosing, the next time you feel like you’re dying under your textbooks, and get de-stressed!