When the college student talks about their stress level, some adults will smile and nod, knowing that the young adult has no idea what is ahead of them. Of course, a college student’s stress can be very real and for the student, stress and anxiety can be debilitating conditions that distract from scholastic pursuits and social development. Unfortunately, the typical remedy for stress in college is to grab another alcoholic beverage or energy drink and attempt to power through the next day. The sad reality is that the stress experienced by adults can begin in their college years, which is why reducing stress in college is not just about surviving the collegiate experience.
Yes, I said exercise
College students can be very busy between classes, homework, and working. The idea of exercise may seem like a good idea to students, but they may not take the time to schedule regular workouts. Exercise is crucial for the college student because it can keep them in good health and help avoid sickness that is prone to attack the student that does not sleep or eat right. In addition, exercise can actually aid the learning process and help the student stay more alert as they go through their days.
Go to bed
The idea of sleep may seem like an oxymoron when it comes to college students. After all, college is a time when students enjoy a lifestyle of staying up until all hours of the night and then stumbling through classes the next day. Unfortunately, college students can have a strong sense of invincibility and they may assume that their level of energy is limitless. The truth is that people of all ages need sleep, which is why students should do their best to maintain a regular sleep schedule. Going to bed may inhibit their social schedule at times, but sleep may help maintain long-term health and aid in the process of minimizing stress.
Try a few leafy vegetables
The diet of a college student is often a combination of pizza, alcohol, snacks, and energy drinks. The challenge for students is that they may forget all about the other food groups as they experience late-night eating and a constant roller coaster of sugar, fat, and caffeine. Discipline may not be in the mental arsenal of every student, but some healthy eating will go a long way towards physical and mental health in college. Therefore, adding fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to the crazy college diet may help things go much more smoothly throughout the year.
Think ahead, plan ahead
Another contributor to stress in college are the academic deadlines that seemed so far away at the beginning of the term but appear almost out of nowhere as the weeks go by. Unfortunately, many college students follow the crowd and cram for tests or start projects the night before they are due. Rather than deal with this stress, students should sit down with their syllabi at the beginning of the term and map out exactly how they are going to get their work done. As things come up they can adjust, but an initial plan can lead to much greater success in the long run.
Still have a little bit of fun
Of course, students do have to enjoy themselves to a certain extent in college. In many ways, college is one of the more profound phases of people’s lives and some of the most fun and carefree moments can happen during the collegiate experience. The challenge is balance, as some students use college as an opportunity to make very risky decisions. This is particularly true for those that like to celebrate on a regular basis. Alcoholism begins for many individuals in college, and while students may want to enjoy themselves in order to reduce their stress, they need to be careful that they do not create habits that cannot be undone at a later date.