Tuesday, March 27, 2007

My Stress Had Taken On A Life Of Its Own
By Hillary Trautmann

Since the day I began to look at colleges, all I have known is stress. My parents constantly questioning me drove me nuts, me questioning myself about what I really wanted drove me nuts, and the fact that I had a deadline to decide my future was driving me nuts. When I finally did decide where I wanted to go to school, I felt stress-free, but as soon as I began college the stress was back. Now, as a third year student in college, stress has become a part of me. So what can I, and all other college students do about their stress?

First and foremost we must search to find where our stress is coming from. According to the University of Florida Counseling Center there are four sources of stress, which are, the environment, physiological sources, your own thoughts, and social stressors. So where is your stress coming from?

There are also many symptoms that come from stress. The University of Florida Counseling Center states that there are physical, emotional, and cognitive symptoms. Some of the physical symptoms are muscular tension, colds or other illnesses, ulcers, indigestion, difficulty sleeping, fatigue, headaches, and backaches. The emotional symptoms can include, irritability, depression, anger, fear or anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, and mood swings. The cognitive thoughts include forgetfulness, unwanted or repetitive thoughts, and difficulty concentrating.

So, who wants to deal with all of this? Luckily, there are ways to ward of stress. One of the easiest ways for college students like myself is to attempt to develop a balanced life style. I know that I am always running around like a chicken with its head cut off. Even when I do have time for things, I find myself not being able to concentrate and end up rushing around. The University of Florida Counseling Center states that a good way to develop a balanced life style is to make sure you get an appropriate amount of sleep, eat in a way that is healthy for you, exercise a few times a week, and stay on top of what you need to stay on top of. Ignoring your responsibilities because you are too stressed out will only make things worse in the long run.

A solution that I have found that works well for me is purchasing a planner. Although looking at everything you have to may seem stressful, just think about how good it will feel when you begin to cross things off your list! I will tell you, it feels amazing. You begin to feel accomplished and may even begin to realize that maybe you have been making things harder on yourself then they really are.

The best thing to do for you is really to give yourself some relaxation time. Even if it is only for a few minutes a day, sitting back and reflecting on your life in a positive light can make all of the difference, and hopefully make all of your problems disappear, and become solutions.

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