Tackling stress

Image courtesy: Seraine Page

National Stress Awareness Month is observed in April to draw attention to the detrimental effects of stress.

Stress management is a vital component of living a healthy lifestyle. Understanding how to handle stress may promote both physical and mental wellness while also reducing the aggravation of health-related problems. “Being a student is demanding, but dealing with them can be enjoyable,” Daunte Saloman said.

Saloman, who is in his third year as a graphic design major at Florida A&M University, utilizes his gym to manage stress.

“Working out at the gym is my go-to stress reliever. Working out helps me regain my cool and deal with the source of my stress.  I’ve tried various stress-relieving techniques, but this one is the best for me,” he said.

According to a study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, students often experience stress as a result of increased obligations, poor time management, changes in eating and sleeping habits, and a lack of self-care. The great majority of students find college difficult. Exams, internship applications and the need to acquire a lot of information in a short amount of time may all be stressful. Stress may be caused by unexpected changes, challenges or tragedies. Students in college must select careers and make significant relationships.

Gisele Stevens, a sophomore at Florida A&M University studying broadcast journalism, uses art to cope with stress.

“When I’m stressed out, I get a lot of headaches and have trouble sleeping, which makes things worse,” Stevens said.

Stressful situations bring on more stressful situations. According to the Mayo Clinic, frequent stress symptoms include upset stomach, headaches, weariness and problems sleeping, as well as irritability, restlessness, and depression. Some individuals resort to drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and food to cope with stress, but overdoing it leads to more stress.

“I like to listen to R&B music while drawing. It allows me to relax and decompress, which relieves my tension,” Stevens added.

“Stick with your routine. Maintain a regular schedule of activities and take care of your usual responsibilities. It helps create a sense of normalcy,” says John MacPhee, executive director and CEO of The JED Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to protecting mental health and preventing suicide among teenagers and young adults.

“Take care of yourself. Work on sleep and eating and being as active as you can because we know our physical health is protective of our mental health,” MacPhee adds.

For more information about Stress Awareness, go to hr.nih.gov/working-nih/civil/national-stress-awareness-month