Author: Rhonda Manns, A2Z College Planning
Getting into college will be one of the most rewarding and exciting parts of your life. It’ll also be the hardest. The process is generally long, complex, and can be difficult. Anything difficult will cause stress – and unless you learn to manage stress, it will manage you. Don’t allow stress to build up and negatively affect your scholastic endeavors or your health.
To fight stress, do these things:
- Stay healthy. Poor eating, exercise and health habits will do more to you than just make you gain weight; they sap energy, worsen your mood, and add to stress. Stress is not just a mental state; it’s a physical state, and if your body is not well equipped to handle it, you’ll be less able to deal with stress. Eat healthy food, get a good night’s sleep, and exercise.
- Budget study time. Ignoring an exam and then cramming the night before will add to your stress (and it doesn’t work anyway.) Having a study plan will not only pace your brain, but just knowing that you have a plan will relax you. For more tips and tricks, read our blog post “Managing Your Study Time”.
- Stay social. You don’t want to party your scholarship away, but it’s important to stay social. Make friends. Find clubs. Play games and sports. Keep in mind that the students you meet today are the co-workers of tomorrow, so it pays to get out and meet new people. Take the time to get to know your colleagues and the time to relax. The mind is well rested by new activities, and socializing will cut down on your stress.
- Engage support. It’s very common for both high school students and college students to feel overwhelmed by it all. If concerns are eating away at you, tell someone – confide in a friend, call your parents, or talk to a professor. Find groups that provide support. Hard though it is to believe when you’re awash in a sea of stress, someone’s always ready to help if you just ask.
Stress management is critically important to any long term effort that requires a lot of time and effort, and your college-bound journey is exactly that. The skills you learn today to manage stress can carry through the rest of your life!