Managing Stress in College


High school graduation symbolizes the end of the first twelve years of one’s educational journey and the beginning of a four year college experience. College can be a fun, memorable, lengthy experience, however, college does require a much more significant amount of effort than high school. Unfortunately many students enjoy college mainly because of its never ending partying and the freedom from their parents. Although it is every student’s primary goal to achieve great academic success throughout their college career, it is very easy to get distracted by a new and unfamiliar environment. With such large amounts of work, it is important to remember that school work should always be a priority while the partying and extracurricular activities are secondary.

It is automatically expected of a college student to be more independent and possess the essential ability to deal with demanding instructors and heavy workloads. Additionally, it is expected that college students will experience a great deal of academic stress. Although stress is a common issue, that at some point everyone has endured, it can be quite overwhelming. Stress is caused by a physical or emotional change, or a change in your environment that requires you to adjust or respond. Stress can result in students feeling both physical and psychological impairments. Like myself, it is certainly every college student’s goal to succeed academically despite the tons of stress. Academic stress levels can be reduced by incorporating a number of new healthy habits for one’s body. Here are a few tips to help students manage stress in college.

1. GET ENOUGH SLEEP.  An insufficient sleep pattern causes stress and puts one at risk for serious illness. Adults typically need seven to nine hours of sleep a night for the best health.

2. EAT HEALTHY. A steady diet of unhealthy foods can decrease energy levels in the body which eventually leads to a lower threshold for stress. Stick to a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.

3. EXERCISE. When you’re stressed, exercising is probably the last thing on your mind. However, 20 minutes a day of any physical activity can reduce stress levels.

4. GET EMOTIONAL SUPPORT. Adjusting to college can be difficult and venting your frustrations to a trusted friend can go a long way in fighting stress. It can be very beneficial to choose a friend or family member who won’t be judgmental or try to give lots of advice. 

5. TRY NOT TO OVERLOAD YOURSELF. With classes, extracurricular activities, and even a job, it’s easy for students to take on more than they can handle. If you’ve registered for an excessive number of courses, don’t be afraid to drop one.