Stress Management for College Students by Trinh Nguyen

By at February 10, 2013 | 10:19 pm | Print

Stress Management for College Students by Trinh Nguyen

Stress is a feeling our body creates when we react and respond to stressors— particular events such as work presentations, school exams, sport competitions, etc. Stress is normal and it goes along the line of being good and bad depending on the situation. Stress is incredibly common amongst college students and when stress becomes too overwhelming, some students may not handle stress effectively, thus raises a health concern. Over-stressing can lead to a serious illness like depression which may lead to other emotional or physical harm to students.

One of the main health concerns is that majority of students don’t know how to cope with stress effectively. Some will use futile and hazardous ways to cope with stress—smoking, binge drinking, and drugs. Since majority of students are unaware of productive and effective strategies to cope with over-stress, a health promotion strategy that deals with this concern will greatly lend a hand to the students’ future in stress management.

As a college student, stress management is such an important skill to have.  There is so much going on in a college student’s life.  There are several activities that can be done to help manage stress.  Often it comes down to whether or not a student is aware of the techniques they can use to help them cope with stress.

Students can create “stress kits” that encourages relaxation tools and materials to use when stress levels arise. A stress kit can include anything that the student finds to help them to handle stress.  Common stress kit items are stress balls, music, eye masks, coloring books, or books to read. Having a stress kit also helps the student realize that it is okay to take a break every now and then.

Another way to for college students to cope with stress is to have a better quality in their snacking habits. Fresh bananas, baked tortilla chips and salsa, breakfast cereal bars, black bean soup, decaf nonfat lattes, baby carrots, gum, and pretzels are examples of good stress busting snacks because they all have nutrients that naturally fight stress. They are great snacks to have instead of resorting to fattening candy or chips.

An additional stress coping mechanism is for students to utilize meditation and exercise. It can be a great way for a student to get perspective on the stress they are feeling. An example of a meditation exercise is to start to count after each breath.  Breathe in, breathe out, one, breathe in, breathe out two … up to ten then start again. Exercise is a great way to relieve stress; physical activity reduces stress, tension, and leaves one feeling fit, energetic, strong, and healthy. Feeling fit, energetic, strong and healthy makes a person feel more self-confident and positive about themselves and life. Exercising will not only keep the students stress levels at bay, it will also increase their overall health. In addition to exercise, a student needs to make sure they get plenty of sleep to stay healthy.  A person that has a lot of stress is more likely to get sick especially if they aren’t getting enough sleep.  It is important to get both exercise and sleep when trying to manage one’s health, and therefore stress, properly.

One of the better ways to manage stress is to have good organizational skills.  If a student can organize their day so that they can get the most out of it as they can then they will be less stressed or worried about the things they did not get done.  College students especially need to have good time management skills with all of the classes, clubs, or sports they are involved with.  Good organizational skills include keeping a planner, making a schedule, making to-do lists or outlining priorities.

With this increased awareness of stress and higher understanding of its coping mechanisms the young adults will be able to recognize the importance of stress management in college students. It can impact grades, work productivity, and even personal relationships. College students need to recognize that stress and what it entails is not an essential feeling in day-to-day life, and it is a manageable affair. Stress should not consume an individual.


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