DEALING WITH COLLEGE STRESS
Prof. David Y. KENKPEN
How you handle the stress of college will affect your ability to learn and stay healthy.
Two kinds of stress affect us: eustress and distress. Eustress keeps you motivated and drives you on to face the day’s challenges. Distress is what happens when you overreact to things, which can result in health problems.
A leading cause of college stress is time management. Making and following a daily schedule is important. Prioritize your daily work with time set aside for classes, reading, writing, exam preparation, eating, exercise, and for some people, a job.
Make the most of your time in college: create a list of important items and keep them a top priority. Writing down your ideas will give you substance to your thinking and reinforce goals. Make careful planning part of your academic routine.
Don’t waste time having a good time and putting off your studies. Come finals, you will really stress out, having to make up for lost time. Instead, balance social activity with academic needs. Don’t be afraid to say “NO” to demands on your time. Make socialized a positive thing by being with people you like, who want you to succeed and are supportive of you. Set aside quiet reflection during a day you need to keep yourself focused and reflect on your goals and how to reach them. Five to ten minutes at the beginning of each day are helpful. Be sure you sleep enough. At least six hours will help you stay and motivated the next day. This in itself will help you reduce stress.
Physical activity is an important part of staying healthy. It is a great way to ensure that stress does not cause problems down the road. Add -a workout to your schedule at last every other day. Jog, power work, use training machines, swim or participate in any form of exercise.
Talk out any concerns or problems you might have with a friend, roommate, family member, professor or student counselor, before things get out of hand. Humor and positive thinking go a long way in helping fight stress. If you can make light of a stressful situation and keep your mind set positive on your goals and how to reach them. You will win the battle of stress.
An important part in fighting stress is a healthy diet. Nutritious food will keep your mind and body strong and ready to confront the challenges of college life.
Try to be stress free, why studying at the University of Liberia.
We all approach learning differently. Knowing your learning style will help you take advantage of your strengths, stress, and compensate for your weaknesses. Everyone has varying degrees, qualities for each learning style. Knowing what method or combination of methods work for you will help you do well in college. By knowing how to learn material on your personal level, you will use your basic skill sets to your best advantage.
College can be daunting. As with any important challenge in life you must set clear goals and work to accomplish them. Don’t give up when the going gets tough; let it inspire you to work harder and remove stress. You can’t achieve great things without encountering difficulty. There are only so many productive hours in a day. Using them wisely is half the battle. Don’t waste a minute giving into procrastination or stress over laziness. If you are exhausted, or stressed you cannot learn, and might get sick, which will set you back even further.
Rest and get proper sleep, at least six hours a night. And get some exercise. It helps you think better. Be aware of how you use your time and how you waste it. Take a serious look at your daily schedule, what do you do away from class and how you are budgeting time. As a young man, young woman or old in general, distress is what happens when you overreact to things or conditions, which can result into health problems. You are what you eat, to be at the top of your game, you need to put the right food into your body. Food is the fuel that keeps you going.
Be sensible about weight loss; don’t go on crash diets to lose those extra pounds. Starvation and quick fix diets usually backfire and cause more harm than good. Eating foods in any particular combination has been proven not to promote weight loss. The sensible thing to do is to eat a balance diet and exercise to help remove stress that might lead to health problems. College is a time for growth and discovery, a time for finding yourself and where you would like for life to take you. Whatever the outcome, enjoy the journey it is a challenging and exciting adventure don’t allow stress or distress to stop you from achieving your goal.