Below is a blog from Zu Magazine writer Katrina Williams.

Staff Writer | Katrina Williams

Azusa Pacific University students are officially halfway through the semester. The newness of the school year has passed but Thanksgiving break is still several weeks away; the mid-semester slump is almost inescapable. It is during this time that students begin to feel exhausted, irritable and unmotivated.  

To set yourself free from the stress of mid-semester, you might consider trying something completely new. Below are a few activities that can help you relieve stress and encourage you for the remainder of the semester.

Goat Yoga

“Goat Yoga” is a new form of animal therapy created by goat owner and yoga lover, Lainey Morse of Albany Oregon. The yoga classes takes place outdoors of of course, surrounded by goats. The class itself is a normal breath-focused yoga class based on escaping everyday stress and empowering your mind.

According to, “most often they’ll [the goats] just lay down on your mat and want to snuggle up next to you.” Each goat is rescued at an early age and therefore are calm, affectionate animals. Ultimately, Goat Yoga is a win-win situation where you can escape into nature, get some exercise, feel rejuvenated and bond with an animal all in one outing.

Classes are spring up across the country. Find yours today.

Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden

Every day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Los Angeles Arboretum and Botanic Gardens are open to the public. With your student ID, entrance is only $6.00. Located in Arcadia, the Arboretum is 127 acres of beautiful gardens, ponds, exhibits, and historical displays. If you enjoy learning new things while being surrounded by nature, the Arboretum allows for hours of exploration. It operates year-round and is located only twenty minutes from the Azusa Pacific campus.

Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre

This popular comedy club is located in downtown Hollywood near several family owned restaurants, bookstores, and clothing shops. If you need a good laugh in the chaotic hustle of college (and who doesn’t) then the UCB Theatre hosts different comedians– both famous and amateur– almost every night with tickets ranging anywhere from five to ten dollars. If you are the type of person who finds freedom in different cultures, foods, humor, and communities, then a night away at the UBC in Hollywood would provide you exactly that.

The Bridge to Nowhere

The Bridge to Nowhere is a 10.1 mile, semi-rigorous hike in the mountains behind the San-Gabriel Valley. Depending on what time of year, hikers will be able to cross rivers, swim, and ultimately have a great adventure while getting exercise. The end of this hike leads to an old, abandoned bridge in the middle of the mountain’s trail. It is on this bridge where hikers can look back and see beautiful views of the valley. If your main way of releasing stress involves being in nature, then this getaway hike is made for you.

Ultimately, understanding how you personally handle stress is vital during the mid-semester slump. Prioritize times and outings like these ones to boost energy and overall morale. You could attend a sporting event, go to a museum, go on a hike, or even simply go out to a restaurant nearby. No matter what it is, find what feels good and allow yourself to embrace a sense of freedom from your troubles.