Posted February 19, 2021

What to do on Wellness Day

Here are five suggestions for getting the most out of some down time.

An illustration of a self-care watering can pouring onto a growing heart.
Photography By: 
Illustration by: Robert Frawley

Temple's Wellness Days can serve as a time to break from routine. While our days may be feeling pretty repetitive right now, a change of pace can bring a welcome sense of relief and reenergize us for what’s ahead.

But, what should we do with a day off during these unusual and unprecedented times? A day off used to mean a day to stay home, but now we’re basically home 24/7 anyway and, yes, we’re already hanging out on our couches most of the time. So, it’s a little harder to know what to do with ourselves.

We crowdsourced some ideas from health and wellness professionals to see what may serve our individual and collective well-being. It seems like the best things to do with some down time are those that are important or meaningful to us—which could actually require a bit of reflection—and to do them wholeheartedly.

Here are five suggestions for making the most of your Wellness Day.

  1. Rest and recharge.  Remind yourself that you are worthy of rest and resting is necessary for achieving our goals. Give yourself permission to sleep late or channel the benefits of a good nap. Journey outdoors for a brisk walk or run. Or maybe some yoga or meditations is what you need to feel rejuvenated. Eating a healthy meal, and taking your time to enjoy it, could also be just what the doctor ordered. Even if it’s from a can, a cup of warm soup can go a long way after long winter. 
  2. Cultivate kindness and compassion. Research shows that one of the best ways to increase our happiness and sense of well-being is to do things that make others happy. Being kind to others inspires them to be kind, in turn, and that generosity spreads throughout our networks. So, doing a good deed is a great way to improve your outlook and build community at the same time. 
  3. Take a minute to plan ahead for the rest of the semester. Maybe that pile of books and papers that has accumulated on your desk could use some organizing. Or filling in assignment deadlines on your calendar could help you manage your time better (and highlight some opportunities to fit more naps into your schedule!). Now could be the perfect moment to tackle these simple tasks you haven’t had time for or have been avoiding. Pro tip: If there’s a mountain of laundry in the corner calling your name, you might want to answer it. Just sayin’.
  4. Be intentional with your time. Connect with someone you miss or who offers you a sense of calm. Or reconnect with something that gives you joy. Watch a movie you’ve been wanting to see or catch up on your favorite reality TV show. Read for pleasure, remember that? Turn on the shower and sing. Sometimes we can get so caught up in our daily routines that we lose track of what we truly enjoy. Whatever you decide to do, savor the experience.
  5. Seek support if you need it. Many of us have experienced collective and individual losses over the past year and it’s important to recognize that our grief is real right now. Temple’s Tuttleman Counseling Services (TCS) offers virtual therapy services, including skills-based and process group therapy sessions, as well as virtual resources supported by their Resiliency Resource Center. TCS also hosts a Support Group for Navigating Student Stress that does not require registration.

Finding motivation and clarity during a pandemic is hard … and it’s OK to admit that. Lots of things have changed and continue to change. We hope you can find some space for little joys and celebrate the big ways you’ve shown your courage over the past year.