Lately, we haven’t been sleeping too well. We know many of you probably haven’t either, since the midterm season brings more than just exam stress. It brings an entire mid-semester slump! (Maybe it’s partly due to some bad sleeping habits?)

Here’s a few tips to getting better sleep, tailored to a sleep-deprived student body:

If you need rest, keep reading.

If you need rest, keep reading.

1. Organize your thoughts in a new, systematic way.

We’ve found that writing down a “to improve” list can be helpful. Why? In general, students deal with a large number of smaller stresses — exams, disagreements with roommates, buying textbooks — versus something larger. It can often feel overwhelming to try to constantly sort priorities, compartmentalize and keep focused with so many things to remember. As a result, we feel overwhelmed and plagued by worry! Keeping your priorities accessible and clear can eliminate an urge to mentally “search” and therefore lead to less struggle in falling asleep. (Read more about sleep and organization here.)

2. Take a closer look at read more »

Did you know that there are less than ten hours until “Pantsless O’Clock?” Neither did we, until we were introduced to the official website, that is.

The site proclaims that “Pantsless O’Clock is a daily reminder to take time to enjoy life unrestricted by pants, trousers, or similar leg coverings. Too often we keep our lower bodies covered and constricted.” That’s cool. A little funny, we suppose. But perhaps the simple act of shedding one’s pants is representative of much more: For anywhere from several moments to an entire hour, being pantsless flies in the face of the societal necessities demanded of us at all other times. It could be, essentially, the ideal of perfect psychological liberation.

But what is all this getting at? read more »

shorts11-235x300To start off our slew of rather unfortunate news, panelists at a symposium in UC Berkeley’s Alumni House talked turkey vis-à-vis California’s future high-speed rail—and their timbre was less than optimistic. [Innovations]

There is, according to one Berkeley economist, a five percent chance that the U.S. will experience a “depression-causing shock.” We’d be interested to see the breakdown in his math. [Seattle Times]

Want to know the alleged (and disturbing) connection between flu shots, mercury and autism? Enlighten yourself at a Nov. 21 symposium at the UC Berkeley Art Museum Theater. Oh, except it’s 60 bucks. So maybe just Google Dr. Andy Wakefield. [PRLog]

And, in conclusion, a pithy affirmation of all your chronic concerns. []

Earlier: Save Our Budget, Lose the Professors

internet insomnee

A weird foursome: could it be that teenagers prone to depression sleep less and use the internet more, resulting in worse depression and tossing them into a real nasty sleep minimizing, internet and depression maximizing situation? Of course we, sound and sturdy early twenty-somethings that we are, are far beyond silly adolescent things like all-nighters, depression and the internet. But hey, how ’bout our soft minded kid brothers and sisters? Yet another psych study gets underway: read more »

shorts11In these hard economic times you might feel the need to escape to the cinema of the “good old days,” you know, back in the ’30s when things were simpler and people were happier. Oh wait. The Pacific Film Archive brings you a new series “From Riches to Rags: Hollywood and the New Deal.” In case you forgot that we’re in a recession. [Daily Planet]

In other depressing news: The Berkeley City Council just raised parking fines $5 in order to help relieve California’s budget crisis. Fines on game days more than doubled. Why can’t those pesky meter people pick on someone their own speed—like golf cart drivers, or people in wheel chairs? [Daily Planet] read more »

Sunday Shout-Out picks out the week’s stories that simply slipped our minds.

* Oh, BTW, we can totally make solar panels cheaper … in five to 20 years. [Daily Cal]

* Stop bugging your GSIs. Chances are, they’re depressed. [Chronicle of Higher Education]

* They’re probably depressed they’re not as wanted as our Boalt professors. Sad face. [Contra Costa Times]

* Say goodbye to Healthy Heavenly Foods in the Bear’s Lair? But what of our cheap sandwiches and banana eggrolls?! [UCB LJ]

Image Source: Shannon Hamilton, Daily Cal
Earlier: The Crazies and the Crazed

Bu-but I dun wanna live in a box!So we all know that the fate of the suckers in the social sciences is to live in a cardboard box and frequent the local coffee shop, looking glum and gaunt, while nursing a double shot of espresso and philosophizing with a fellow box-dweller about Kierkegaard. But the other day, we heard a joke that cut straight to our feeble academic hearts: Q: “What’s the difference between a Segway and a humanities major?” A: “At least a Segway is useful.”

We’re a little desensitized to the whole buzz-killing, “What are you gonna do when you graduate?” question, and the attack on our future domicile is just absurd (We mean, we’ll be couch surfing or in a nice sleeping bag along the sidewalk, at least), but being compared—topped, rather—by the transportation industry’s equivalent of orthopedic shoes is just too much. read more »

The fact that we’ve been getting more and more student questionnaires via email asking us about our trends in suicidal thoughts has been mildly unsettling, but it may just be Tang looking out for us. They’re upping their services in response to increased counseling service visits per year (now more than 14,500). They’re also just in time for finals (the season of stressing) and winter (also not so good).

So if you’re feeling the gray hairs growing out, the worry wrinkles settling in or the blood pressure climbing off the charts, drop in on the Tang Center and find a peer or professional–whatever you’re into. Apparently, taking care of your mental health is the cool thing to do nowadays.

On a more serious note, if you need help, talk to someone. Anyone. It’ll be worth your time.

Image Source: Hamed Saber under Creative Commons
Tang Center Increases On-Campus Presence of Counseling Services [Daily Cal]