By Kristy Oconnell
Since you began attending LIU Post, have you found out how great college really is? Or are you one of those people, like myself, who has found college to be one of the most stressful times of your life? I know it is an exaggeration – because the real world will be ten times harder, but boy is college difficult.
Every day more and more work accumulates. Between keeping up with readings, studying for tests, and working, I wonder how people do it. How do people stay sane in college? I have yet to understand how to make time to go out every weekend and sometimes even on school days—kudos to all of those who manage to do so. Care to share your secret? I could use some advice, and I’m sure so could many other students.
According to a survey taken by the American Psychiatric Association, college students have expressed the following feelings in the past year: 45 percent of students felt things were hopeless; 50 percent felt an overwhelming sense of anxiety; 30 percent felt so depressed that it was difficult to function; 36 percent felt an overwhelming sense of anger; and seven percent seriously considered suicide.
The survey also reported that 62 percent of students used alcohol and 14 percent used marijuana in the 30 preceding days.
Maintaining mental health is extremely important to overall well-being and success. College is tough, but there are ways to cope. Never let the stresses overwhelm you to the point where you feel any of the above emotions. It is not worth the damage to your well-being.
There is no reason to feel that these terrible emotions can’t be managed. The moment you feel hopeless or overwhelmed in any way, it is important to seek out help and ways of coping. Be proactive.
Maybe it is not the assignments, work, or school that stresses you out, but maybe it is something more personal. In that case, it is important that you recognize the triggers and handle the situation appropriately. No issue regarding mental health should be taken lightly, because it can always escalate to a greater, more serious issue. Stress can even trigger other symptoms, like headaches, perspiration and insomnia, just to name a few.
So whatever the issue may be, drugs and alcohol are definitely not the best ways to cope, and you know it. Find things that make you happy and relieve your stress. Make it a tradition to see a movie every Friday, or maybe attend a weekly yoga class. Whatever it is that relieves you, stick with it.
This article is not meant in any way, shape or form to substitute professional medical advice.