If you’re asking me

Thanksgiving break is reserved for self-care

Skyler Schad

More stories from Skyler Schad

If you’re asking me
October 4, 2023

Photo by Marisa Valdez

Fall time is the best time for improving your mental health.

Dear readers,

It’s the moment we have all been waiting for since the beginning of the semester: Thanksgiving break.

The bags are being packed, the classes are slowing down, the gas tanks are being filled and (some) professors are canceling classes left and right.

I can’t wait for the moment I check out of my dorm room and get into my car, driving away as my radio plays my latest Spotify playlist.

I don’t know about you, but I’m so ready to go home and momentarily pretend that I’m no longer a college student but a little kid again.

The week of Thanksgiving always reminds me of being young. Watching movies and messing around while my dad cooks Thanksgiving dinner and I hold myself back from dipping my fingers into the mashed potatoes too many times.

Everything is so nostalgic and warm. It’s the best feeling ever, but being the kind of person who finds it hard to prioritize time for myself, I’m encouraging you to use this break to relax.

I have homework and things to do, so I know you’re going to make excuses like, ‘But Skyler, I have homework I have to do. I can’t relax over break.’

Well, that’s false. I don’t care how much homework you have to do. This is the time when you can finally put yourself first and prioritize your mental health.

To help get you started, here are 10 ways you can utilize self-care over the break:


  1. Do your homework early, and then forget that school exists. It will be worse if you leave it until the last minute and fret about it all week.
  2. Hang out with some friends from your hometown. You won’t get the chance again until winter break. Use this time.
  3. Watch a ton of movies, either with your family or by yourself. This will be the best time to start checking things off your watchlist.
  4. Start decorating for Christmas (if you celebrate it). My family always decorates the weekend after Thanksgiving and it’s the best way to relax and get excited for the holidays.
  5. Warm up with some hot chocolate or another hot drink, put on some fuzzy socks, grab a plate of cookies and find a place to sit and read a book.
  6. Eat as much food as you want. Eating a good Thanksgiving meal is not going to mess with your weight, I promise. Food is fuel, also, eat a ton of pie.
  7. Go Black Friday shopping. Buy some gifts, or reward yourself for working so hard this semester.
  8. Spend time with your family. Watch movies together, play some board games or go on a car ride. They miss you and want to spend time with you.
  9. Cuddle your pets. You’re going to miss them once you leave for school again, so give them all of the love you can. Plus, animals are great therapy.
  10. Finally, nourish yourself and your body. Meditate, do some yoga, write in your journal, sleep as much as you want and eat whatever food you want. Taking care of you and your body should be the priority, not just for break but every day.


If you ever feel stressed over break, remember to take time for yourself and utilize self-care. I hope some of these ideas help to pull you out of any slumps you find yourself in.

Don’t worry about school, don’t worry about being perfect and just focus on being present, for others and for yourself.

Thanksgiving break is reserved for self-care. Remember that.

I hope you have a great Thanksgiving break full of love, family, laughter and most importantly, self-care.

Lots of love and hugs of encouragement,



Schad can be reached at [email protected].