Stress: The Universal Experience of University

It's inevitable: at one point in our lives we have all been told to “just calm down” by someone that thinks they understand your emotions better than you. But what these amateur therapists don’t understand is that sometimes it simply is impossible to de-stress. With papers looming, part-time jobs, and the everyday hassles of living on our own- such as laundry and groceries- always present in the back of our minds, it isn’t unrealistic that even the littlest things can set us off. Most of us radiate stress in at least a ten-meter diameter, affecting our life and our relationships. So I’m not here to tell you to “just calm down,” but to offer some tips that (sometimes) help when I’m stressed.

  1. Wake up early and get a start on your workload. Sleeping in always seems like a good plan from underneath the covers, but in reality sleeping in late will only make you feel guilty and more pressured to overwork to make up for lost time.
  2. Work out. There really is nothing that can make you feel better than twenty minutes on an elliptical. Pump your music loud, don’t worry about looking like a mess, and just go. There will be time to study after.
  3. Know your limits. In a town populated mostly by students, there will always be someone willing to do something more fun than studying with you. You need to know your due dates and not be afraid to say “no,” even if you really haven’t been to Ceeps in like forever.
  4. Have a glass of wine while studying. This is a difficult tip because it must be done in moderation. A small glass of wine while writing an essay helps me relax with the bonus effect of taking the edge off of studying.
  5. Vent. It is okay to tell people how stressed you are. Its not okay to constantly talk about it and demean people if they currently have less to do than you- this is university and we’re all busy, its not a competition.
  6. Chocolate and coffee. When has this combination ever made someone feel worse?
  7. Get out of the house for your study break. When you watch TV as a break, you are still staring at a screen; you are not getting a real break from studying. Go for a walk or go buy food- just get out of the house.

Hopefully some of these tips help and if they don’t, just remember that Christmas break is (relatively) soon.