College is an exciting time for most young people; so many transitions, challenges, victories, and opportunities for growth. However, experiencing so much in such a short time can become overwhelming.
If you do not develop healthy coping strategies, the negative impacts of being in a rigorous academic program can threaten your mental and physical health. These seven coping strategies improve your college experience and guarantee your well-being.
Learn to Say “No”
So much to do, but you barely have enough time. This dilemma is part and parcel of the college experience and many students get overwhelmed because they want to do everything. Achieving the perfect balance of academic and social experiences is neither easy nor worth it.
Having realistic expectations of your college experience is the first step. You should have goals that are not only clear but also achievable to avoid being overworked and fatigued. Prioritize activities that add value to your life because quality always trumps quantity.
Have a Routine
Rolling out of bed each morning and giving everything a half-hearted try will make you unproductive. On the other hand, starting the day with an established routine and a clear to-do list will give positive results and improve your mood.
Decide what time your day starts, how long you need to get ready, and which activities set the pace for a good day. If you follow this routine daily, you will have a sense of purpose that grounds you and gives you peace of mind.
Take a Tech Break
College students use their technology devices for just about everything they do. There is an app for everything; planning schedules, taking notes, and setting hydration reminders. Although these apps make life convenient, the endless screen time can wear you out.
Unplugging from technology can be helpful. For at least one day, turn off your devices and engage in relaxing activities. Giving yourself thirty minutes of tech-free relaxation before bed each night can improve your sleep patterns.
Have Healthy and Balanced Meals
You are what you eat. If you are constantly consuming junk food that has high sugar and fat content, your health will be affected. A healthy, balanced diet keeps your energy up throughout the day and makes you productive.
Your body needs fuel to function properly. It also needs to be well hydrated. If you are too busy, set hydration reminders on your phone and have your reusable water bottle with you wherever you go.
The college encourages a sedentary lifestyle because you are constantly sitting in class, typing on your laptop, or reading a book in the library. These activities can make you listless and lethargic especially if you never get to move around as much you need to.
Set aside thirty minutes of your day for physical activity. You can take a walk, go to the gym or ride a bike in the park. Any activity that gets your body moving is good for you.
Your body needs at least 6 hours of sleep to function properly. Sleep is essential because it gives your body time to rejuvenate and gear up for the next day’s activities. Unfortunately, college schedules can interfere with your ability to get a full night of sleep.
To create healthy sleep patterns, you must know your limits. Do not sign up for more activities than you can handle. Have an established routine that lets you wind down each evening and have a peaceful night.
Have a Support System
Asking for help is always a good idea. Whether that means asking a professional, “Please write my paper for me,” or simply getting study buddies that help you understand difficult course concepts, any help that relieves your workload is worth taking.
Identify the resources available for you. Numerous campus resources are created to help students personally and academically. Because these resources are free, you should not think twice about taking advantage of them.
Friends and family are a great source of emotional and mental support. Call home as much as you need to. Having a support system lessens the mental burden that is caused by a hectic college schedule.
College is an exciting and overwhelming experience. With so much to do and very little time for it all, students can easily get overwhelmed. Having a simple schedule, eating well, and asking for help are some of the ways students can take care of themselves. By using each of the seven coping strategies above, you will maintain your physical, emotional, and mental well-being.