Staying Stress-Free

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By Cade Webb

Photo illustration by Julia Larberg
Photo illustration by Julia Larberg

 


cwebb26@jccc.edu

Think back to final exam week. Many students probably remember how stressed out they were with trying to carve out time to study for their trigonometry exam or 15-page term paper. On top of that, imagine trying to balance five final exams and 20 hours of work outside of school. That’s the reality that many college students deal with in today’s world.

Since 1992, April has been recognized as National Stress Awareness Month. During this month, health officials and experts pro­mote awareness to the general public about the dangers of stress. As college students, a lot of the focus is on students. The key, they say, is to find ways to carve out some time for yourself and take your mind off of whatever it is that is getting to you.

Levi Lanzrath, a freshman at the college, talked about ways he deals with stress. “I spend a lot of time on Reddit, on my phone and being outdoors. I love nature, so riding my bike is something that helps me.”

Lanzrath is currently taking 13 credit hours while working 20 hours on the side at Best Buy.

Stress brings about many issues, social and physical. According to the American Institute of Stress, 40 percent of those af­fected by stress lose sleep every night. Lan­zrath says that the most important thing he can do to cope with stress is to get a good night’s sleep.

“It’s important for me to get at least seven hours of sleep a night. That way I’m well-rested and being tired during the day isn’t an issue.”

Another way that students at the college have dealt with stress is finding new study­ing techniques. Whether it be high-tech apps or the tried-and-true flashcards, students still feel it is necessary to use a technique that is efficient and easy to use.

One resource Lanzrath uses is Quizlet, an app available for Android and iPhone. The app allows users to create virtual flash­cards and have the program read them back to them. It eliminates the need for you to pull your friends or family away from their day to quiz you.

“It’s really nice to be able to study so quickly. It comes in handy with terms and vocabulary,” Lanzrath said.
Organization is obviously an easy way to cut down on unneeded stress. Alli Stout, a sophomore, uses the old-fashioned agenda.

“I just try to organize my time and think ahead by using a planner. It makes it easy to write out what I have to do and when I have to do it by.”

Stout also said that during finals week last year, she took an entire week off of work just to have time to study for exams.

Whatever the stress management tech­nique may be, it’s important to find some­thing that suits your lifestyle. If you are a busy student who works full time on top of 12 credit hours, an efficient, fast way to study is highly necessary.

The college also offers a meditation room, which can be used as a domain to just get away and unwind. Located in COM 309, every student at the college has access to the facility. It is open Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The effects of stress on your body


The human body responds physically to emotional problems.

Stress brings about many health issues, both emotional and physical.

*According to the American Institute of Technology, stress affects key areas of the body. *

    • Nervous system: In more stressful situations, the human body kicks into “fight or flight” mode. This releases adrenaline and cortisol from the adrenal glands into the bloodstream.

 

    • Cardiovascular system: Acute stress leads to increased heart rates, and stronger contractions of the heart. Excess episodes of acute stress can eventually lead to heart attacks

 

    • Gastrointestinal system: A common coping mechanism for dealing with stress is excess eating. This can lead to acid reflux, obesity, and heart disease.

 

  • Respiratory system: When faced with stressful situations, heavy breathing can follow – sometimes to the point of hyperventilation.

Compiled by Cade Webb

 

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