Oh, college – the days of tanning on grassy knolls, adventures in the library book stacks and late-night trips for inebriated noms (could also be: the joy of inebriated fourth meals).
As you recall your own college career years from now, these will be your fondest memories, vivid amongst others you may be more inclined to repress: the hours spent cramming for finals, that time (or times) you almost lost (or did lose) your laptop/tablet/cell phone and essentially, your daily struggle to balance social life, being a student and getting a job.
Furthermore, if you’re really ambitious, you’ve also dedicated time to an on-campus job or off-campus internship, at least one to two community service organizations, and how could we forget that you’re a member of Greek life? That’s not just frat parties; it’s chapters, and dinners and dues.
Plain and simple, college is a lot of work, a lot of pressure and a lot of stress.
With the pressure to succeed in numerous areas of college life, it’s not surprising students experience a great deal of stress during the school year. In some extreme cases, stress and pressure have been known to lead to depression and even thoughts of suicide among college students. However, when dealt with correctly, students can prevent their daily pressures and stress from having a devastating effect.
A few students from the University of Southern California shared their answers for dealing with college’s demands:
“Coffee -- coffee is how I deal with stress,” says Mallory Mudie, a senior communications major. “Probably two or three cups a day… I took yoga last semester, so I’ve adopted yoga breathing techniques. That’s been very beneficial to me. I am also a procrastination eater- so instead of studying or something, I’ll have a snack.”
Allen Ng, a junior business major, has a different strategy for dealing with stress: “Well… I skip class. I don’t have much stress during midterms or finals or anything because I’m an exchange student and only need to pass my classes for credit. But when I do get stressed, I like to skip class or eat. I think working out is also good for stress.”
Senior communications major Gal Nagar also agreed with Ng: “For me, the best way to deal with stress is to keep active and stay busy. When I have too much time to think about stressors in my life, those feelings of anxiety and tension are heightened. To avoid this, I make sure to keep busy and deal with things individually as they come.”
As an ‘SC lacrosse player, freshman Kate Pederson knows all about staying active to keep stress at bay. She said, “I deal with stress by being with the people that I really care about, and that make me laugh. I try to get as much sleep as possible, and make sure to go workout or something along those lines.”
Ian Ritchey, a senior business major, partakes in a variety of activities to keep his mind stress-free. “The key is definitely staying active and doing things you enjoy. I handle stress in a couple of different ways. For instance, I love cooking. Then there’s also working out and surfing. Being outdoors is especially important to me," he said.
Ritchey’s girlfriend, Charlotte Sewell, is a sophomore communications major who is similar to her boyfriend in that she turns to food when stressed as well. “I like cooking too, but when I’m stressed, I actually just order in. It saves time!" revealed Sewell. "Also, I have a thing for sweets. Beyond eating though, I have a passion for dancing and watching trashy TV.”