How to Survive Stress in College

The time you spend in college is meant to be one of the most fun and carefree times in your life, but it’s easy to become overwhelmed and stressed out by your coursework, your job, or countless other aspects of your personal life. Almost every student will have to learn how to cope with stress at some point during their college career, so knowing some tips on how to deal with it is a valuable life skill for all of us.

1) Take Care of Your Physical Health 

Your middle school health teacher was right: your physical health has a great influence on your life. If you’re not getting enough sleep, eating right (at least most of the time), and getting some exercise, it’s guaranteed to take a toll on your emotional wellbeing, which will almost definitely lead to stress. It’s important to take some time each day to do what’s best for your body in order to do what’s best for your mind.

2) Don’t Overdo It

Your grades and your success in your classes are obviously very important, but nothing should be prioritized over your mental health. If you’ve been studying all day, reward yourself by re-watching your favorite movie, indulging in one of your favorite snacks, or going out with your friends. Know when it’s time to relax, especially when you’ve earned it!

3) Know What to Avoid

No one knows you better than you do. Maybe you tend to put off your homework to the point that it makes you feel anxious, or maybe you’re guilty of constantly worrying about how many questions you missed on the exam you took last week. If you can take a moment to consider what makes you the most stressed, then you can realize what behaviors you may be doing that unintentionally add to it. Avoiding bad habits like procrastination and overthinking things that are out of your control can help you to decrease your stress level. 

4) Reach Out 

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, reach out to your friends and family. Whether it’s studying for your midterms or working on a big essay that has you feeling a little more stressed than usual, it will make you feel better to talk about your problems with someone that you trust. Even in the most unpleasant situations, it’s hard to feel stressed once you’re laughing with those you love.

5) Don’t Be Afraid to Utilize Your Resources

Almost all college campuses make it a priority to consider the wellbeing of their students. If your campus offers counseling services, you may want to consider seeing a counselor for help with your stress. It can feel scary or even awkward to seek professional help, but these people have made it their job to help students like you make it through all sorts of problems. Whether you decide to make seeing a counselor a regular part of your life or not, knowing that there are people committed to helping you cope with your stress should take a weight off your shoulders.