DEAR HARRIETTE: I have a very busy couple of weeks coming up. I have my last round of midterms, Thanksgiving break, finals, moving back home, Christmas, visiting family, then New Year’s. I am looking forward to getting to see family and friends and going back home for a while, but I started thinking about how much work and travel I am going to be doing until January, and it completely stressed me out. I do not want to cut anything from my schedule, but I am worried that I am going to burn out and not do my best or have the right attitude.
When I get overwhelmed, I tend to become a recluse, and I have way too many things to do and exciting events in the future to do that. Do you have any tips on how to handle stress with a full plate? How do you manage a busy life effectively? -- Busy Stress
DEAR BUSY STRESS: First, step back and review your upcoming schedule. Can you eliminate anything? Yes, there are other people involved, but if there’s a chance you don’t have to do every single thing on your list, consider cutting something out. Build in time for rest and quiet. Plan not to stay up all night every night. Schedule evenings in when you give yourself permission to do little to nothing -- literally. Build in downtime when you will play music, meditate, drink tea or nap. Eat as well as you can so that you keep up healthy habits. Be willing to say no when you need to pause.