Don’t Let Stress Kill You

By Alexandra Blockton
ablockton@lc.edu

Many times in life, we, as human beings, can become overwhelmed with life just in general. Due to having the day to day activities that come along with our schedules and knowing exactly how to deal with them.

There are many reasons that can cause an individual to become stressed out. But being able to have control of the situation as well as yourself is an important factor in keeping yourself healthy.

Being a college student can bring on stress from trying to maintain a high GPA, lack of sleep, missing family and friends, financial worries, and planning for the future, etc. These symptoms may include feeling overwhelmed, physical aggression, sleep problems, ignoring responsibilities, moodiness, suicidal thoughts, social isolation, self-harm, headaches and other aches/pains, substance abuse, sadness, and depression. As well as, stomach and digestive problems, and cutting class, etc.

According to The American Institute of Stress, Stress also triggers unhealthy habits, with 46 percent of the Mental Health Foundation’s 4,000 respondents claiming they overate or ate unhealthy foods. 29 percent blamed their chronic stress for drinking too much while up to 16 percent claimed it drove them to take up smoking. Stress may also take its toll on our mental health. Of those who felt stressed 61 percent reported battling anxiety and 51 percent had depression. Stress can affect you emotionally, mentally, and physically. In severe cases, 32 percent of those who felt stressed at some point in their life admitted to having suicidal thoughts.

Many of the times being under lots of pressure, facing big changes, worrying about something, not having much or any control over the outcome of a situation, and having responsibilities that you’re finding overwhelming. As well as, not having enough work, activities, or change in your life, times of uncertainty, money, death of a loved one, and dealing with having an illness or medical issues. Also having to deal with a loved one or someone who is close to you that has medical issues, can certainly bring upon stress. These indicators listed above are many of the ways that can cause stress in your life.

You have to learn how to set boundaries because I personally think one stressful situation makes it easier to fall into another and so on. But if you are able to get a hold of your stress levels before it gets that far, you will not be putting yourself in danger of adding more into your stress levels.

By all means, everyone deals with their stress in different ways. You are always in control of you. Being able to learn to manage stress can lead you to living a healthier life as well as being happier.

Below are many techniques you can use in overcoming stress listed by WebMD,

-Always keep a positive attitude

-Accept that there are events that you cannot control

-Be assertive instead of aggressive, assert your feelings, opinions, or beliefs, instead of becoming angry, defensive, or passive

-Learn and practice relaxation techniques; try meditation, yoga, or tai-chi for stress management

-Exercise regularly, your body can fight stress better when it’s fit

-Eat healthy, well-balanced meals

-Learn to manage your time more effectively

-Set limits appropriately and learn to say no to requests that would create excessive stress in your life

-Make time for hobbies, interests, and relaxation

-Get enough rest and sleep. Your body needs time to recover from stressful events

-Don’t rely on alcohol, drugs, or compulsive behaviors to reduce stress

-Seek out social support, spend enough time with those you enjoy

-Seek treatment with a psychologist or other mental health professional trained in stress management

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About Alexandra Blockton

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