Spring Awakening and The Benefits of Bloom

illustration by Christina Carlson
illustration by Christina Carlson

A Spring Awakening // written by: Brittney Lu

Break the tradition that states January is the only time of year to proclaim a renewed sense of self. A new season is in bloom and, come new buds and sprouts, this Spring Quarter is the perfect invitation to renew those winter vows we made at the start of 2017, or marry some new ones.

Spring Slumber

Coming back from spring break, most of us are on a sleep schedule that cycles between Netflix and naps. Recenter those circadian cycles and get a more balanced approach to hibernation at the start of the quarter. Scientists recommend that college students sleep for eight or more hours; when our sleeping habits fall well below or unhealthily above that lucky number, more often than not, we create what is known as a “sleep debt.” So going into this quarter, let’s make sure student loans are the only thing we owe.

Awaken Your Appetite

College students have a tendency to either do absolutely nothing or to go all out — eating habits included. Skipping meals to study or binge snacking out of boredom, we become walking vessels full of sodium and low on nutrients. Plus, cooking three solid meals a day is nearly impossible given our schedules. So rethink your dining experience — having six smaller meals might better help you to stay full throughout the day. (Note: this doesn’t mean having steak and ‘taters six times a day). Each “meal” can easily be something concocted out of the dining hall salad bar, market bought — think yogurts, small wraps or hummus with vegetables — or prepared at the start of the week. And with new seasons come new fruits and veggies, so make sure to get your five a day.

Rolling in Green

With daily averages around 64 degrees and the Pacific Ocean as our next door neighbor, relearn how to play outside this Spring Quarter. Being outside is proven to be a low cost, high reward way to reduce stress while increasing awareness and mindfulness, as well as both social and natural connectivity. Take a walk to class instead of shuttling, spend a morning heading to the shores or sit outside to eat, study or read — 10 minutes under a tree might do more than 10 hours in Geisel.

Spring Cleaning

This expands to more than a quick Swiffer of the kitchen and making your bed each morning. And while studies show that a clean space is conducive to productivity and can help alleviate stress, expand that spring clean to a checking account or planner too. Creating a weekly budget is a recommended habit to start earlier in adolescence, so here’s to not spending that bi-weekly Wednesday paycheck by Thursday. Separate the check into uneven thirds, prioritizing portions based on what is needed (rent, tuition, food), what is wanted (everything else) and what could be saved. Investing some time in a planner can also help mitigate those financial woes, as well as balancing work with play. Learn to make a little bit of space each week to do something you actually take interest in, as opposed to cramming in or overcommitting.

So this spring, let’s break the cycle of too much and too little. A balanced approach to sleeping, eating, playing and organizing can help create a healthier, more holistic approach to life.

Benefits of Blooms // written by: Annika Olives

By Spring Quarter, most UC San Diego students are exhausted. Still reeling from the losses of Winter Quarter that a week-long spring break has not managed to resolve, we’re motivated only by the far-away prospect of summer. Spring is also the season of warming weather, growing greenery and beautiful new blooms, though most of us don’t notice until we start sneezing.

However, flowers can be useful to more people than the CEOs of allergy medication companies. A Harvard study found that participants who had flowers present in the home felt more compassionate, worried less and were generally happier. Other research has discovered that, in general, flowers elicit positive moods, which might be just what we lethargic students need.

Smells are also a big influencer on mood, and inhaling the scent of fresh lavender or jasmine may help to reduce anxiety before a midterm. Think about colors, too: bright-colored flowers might energize, whereas pastel-colored flowers might remind you to relax.

Searching for some flowers might just be the best thing to add to your Sunday routine. If you don’t have the luxury of a garden, head to these places to pick up a bouquet for your kitchen counter (or even your dorm room desk) or spend a day among the wildflowers.


UCSD Farmers’ Market Town Square Tuesdays, 10 a.m.–2 p.m.

This on-campus farmers’ market usually includes flower vendors — stop by on Tuesdays to change out your vase!

La Jolla Open Aire Farmers’ Market Corner of Girard Avenue & Genter Street, La Jolla Sundays, 9 a.m.–1:30 p.m.

This market in Downtown La Jolla sometimes includes local flower vendors.

Bridget’s Blooms 1055 Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla

If you’re out and about for that Saturday morning brunch, make sure to check out this little nook for some fresh flora; the arrangements are a bit on the pricier side but a peek at these buds couldn’t hurt.

La Jolla Village Florist 7050 Miramar Rd #104, La Jolla

This shop doesn’t stop with bouquets of blooms; La Jolla Village Florist includes a variety of houseplant pieces and even fruit arrangements.


Carlsbad Flower Fields 5704 Paseo Del Norte, Carlsbad

This 50-acre field boasts rows upon rows of colorful ranunculus flowers.

Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve 12600 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla

Though not known for its flower display, flowers often grow on the seaside cliffs. And if this might be too far of a trek from campus, check out the yellow bloomers at the cliffs near Revelle.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Borrego Springs

With the past rainy season, this park is experiencing an explosion of flowers and new growth. It’s a bit of a trek from UCSD, but it may be well worth it if you have a day to spare.

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