The Key to Success: How You Deal With Your Stress

Entering a new stage in your life, whether in school, your career, or within your family, can cause a great deal of stress. Learning to cope with this stress in healthy ways is crucial to long term success. Establishing certain habits at the start of your undergraduate career can help alleviate the pressures of these changes. They can make you more productive both in the workforce and during your studies. In addition to increased productivity, some of these tips will help you stay young and look your part on that much needed Saturday off!

Get Acquainted with your Study and Work Patterns

One of the greatest challenges of your university education is learning to manage your course load and time. It’s easy to feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day. Sure, high school may have been a breeze for some of us. However, your college professor, unlike that annoyingly outspoken high school history teacher, will not be breathing down your neck to finish your assignments or even your tests. Once you begin the journey of college, it really is like being in the Amazons. Only the fittest survive. First of all, you may want to see what time of the day you are more productive. Does your mind work most efficiently in the morning or the afternoons? Next, it is important to know how long it takes you to read an assigned article, comprehend the information, and regurgitate the information (whether in the format of a test or paper). This means starting early when you assigned your first readings. Your roommates may call you a nerd, but you’ll be a lot better off than they will come test time.

Set a Schedule

Is there a really great band in town this weekend? Are all of your friends skipping it because of that test on Monday? You don’t have to! Setting a schedule for the semester can help you prioritize your school work and your social life. If you start planning a few weeks before the test, you will have time to ace that test and go to your favorite social events. Set aside one or two hours a day prior to a big test to just sit and study. Setting up a schedule at the start of each week is a great way to manage your tasks. It may sound corny, but if you spend ten minutes on a Sunday night planning out what you need to do for the rest of the week, you will be able to allocate your time wisely. You won’t feel overwhelmed at any one time. You can use Google calendars, a whiteboard, or even an old-fashioned planner to organize your to-dos. There are quite a few fashionable ones available these days at your local bookstore.

Make your Breaks count!

Taking breaks are important for your mind and body. If you set up a schedule, make sure to incorporate time you plan to take off. Be realistic. You may not be able to read one hundred pages in 2 hours without at least a 30 minute break. During your break, do something enjoyable or relaxing. If that means checking your Twitter or Facebook, so be it. Just make sure you don’t let your social networking carry over into your study time.

Carbs Will Not Solve Your Problems

When we face new environments or an increased workload, our body releases increased levels of cortisol. Cortisol is often nicknamed the “stress hormone”. This increase can intensify our cravings for sweet and salty food. The freshman fifteen is not just an urban myth. University students often deal with their stress by eating larger, unhealthier portions. Control your eating habits from the start of the school year. Don’t skip meals, especially breakfast, because that will cause binge eating at later hours of the day. You don’t have to give up all your favorite junk food, just make sure to exercise portion control. Lastly, make sure to add in at least twenty to thirty minutes of exercise into your schedule. You don’t have to run a 5 mile marathon. However, a walk around your neighborhood or campus would be a good addition to your day. Plus, exercise releases healthy endorphins into your body that make you feel good AND look good.

Alisa Gilbert, regularly writes on the topics of bachelors degree. She welcomes your comments at her email Id: alisagilbert599@gmail.com.

Jenni Proctor

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