How Can Family Members Support Students During Break?
- Listen. Let your student know that you are there to listen to them and support them. There is significant value in just listening and being a calm source of support.
- Let the break be a break. Next week offers a chance to relax. Students will benefit from some downtime, even as they begin to return to regular routines and to the pursuit of their educational goals.
- Prioritize physical and mental wellness. Students often think they have to choose wellness or academic success, when in fact students flourish when they strike a balance between the two. Encourage your student to get “back to basics.” Adequate sleep more than makes up for time lost studying, for example, while sleep deprivation can impair a student’s cognitive function, even after hours of study. College is a great time to be intentional in developing and implementing wellness practices.
- Help students set realistic expectations for themselves. College students can overemphasize perfection and become unforgiving with themselves. Unrealistic expectations may impair their ability to succeed. Remind your student that there is simply not enough time or energy in life to do everything and do it perfectly. Talk about schedules outside the classroom — student organizations, athletics, part-time jobs, etc. Are they taking on too much or overextending themselves?