As you may (or may not) have noticed, Harvard University Health services has opened a new “Center for Wellness” in the Holyoke Center, offering workshops, massages, and general information regarding well-being. If you don’t get a chance to drop by, however, you can still check out their website to see a list of programs, make appointments, or find out more about the center. We took a minute to read the “tools and tips” provided on the website and decided to translate a few into versions that are more useful for the average Harvard student.


Their version: Replace your soda, juice, or coffee with a glass of water, and you've taken one small but important step toward well-being.

Useful version: Alternate each shot of vodka, bottle of beer, or glass of wine with water, and you’ve still most likely taken in too many calories and hastened the death of your liver, but DAPA would be proud.


Their version: Before you can stop procrastinating, you need to figure out why you’re doing it. Most people procrastinate for one of three reasons: perfectionism, emotional avoidance, or fear.

Useful version: You’re probably procrastinating for one of three reasons: you haven’t done the reading, you don’t want to do the reading, you have better things to do besides the reading. If you’re going to forgo the work altogether, you might want to make sure that section participation isn’t a large part of your overall grade.


Their version: Open yourself to chance: Some choices take you exactly where you need to go; others take you by surprise. Let them. All we have is the integrity of this moment, and the calm that comes from trusting what lies ahead.

Useful version: As shopping week comes to an end, you might have ended up with classes that will turn out just as interesting (or just as boring) as you expected. If that new gen-ed course isn’t the 4.3 Q-score you expected, hold onto the "calm that comes from trusting [that add/drop period] lies ahead."


Their version: Invest in the relationships that bring meaning to your life and that you know will be with you for the long haul.

Useful version: Don’t drunkenly hook up with that kid in your entryway, your section, or your study group. It will lead to awkwardness when you run into each other and you may have to find someone else to help you with your p-sets the night before they are due.

Their Version: Active listening means devoting your attention to what someone is saying. It requires you to listen with an open mind uncluttered by inner dialogue. Concentrate on understanding what the other person is saying, not on phrasing your response.

Useful version: Don’t feel bad if you zone out when "that kid" talks during section. When someone else is talking though, try to pay attention, because even if you didn’t do the readings, he or she might have.


Their version: Try doing something creative for five minutes everyday. Draw a quick picture with colored pencils just for fun or write a short poem. Even the smallest burst of creativity may inspire you.

Useful version: Comp the Crimson!

Photo by Kathryn C. Reed/The Harvard Crimson