5 Ways University Students Can Manage Their Stress During The Pandemic
Author: Vijayabalan A/L Krishnan
Editor: Kanessha A/P Rama Krishnan
Tertiary education can be very challenging for students if they are not able to deal with stress well. Usually, the level of stress or pressure experienced by students increases when the exam and assessment season arrives. Students who experience stress can either push them in a positive or negative direction. That is, if a student manages to accept the stress caused by the upcoming assessment from a positive angle, he or she will strive to study more diligently.
However, if the student is unable to manage the stress experienced, it can lead to something undesirable such as emotional stress, panic attacks, extreme anxiety and the list goes on. Moreover we know that students have to face a lot of struggles for their projects and assignments especially during this pandemic. It becomes even more difficult when courses that require hands-on experience are being forced to be learnt through the screen of a laptop from students’ homes. A variety of variables can contribute towards stress amongst students, whether it's having problems with your mental health, loneliness, homesickness, or relationship problems are all symptoms of loneliness, finding it difficult to save money or manage debt.
Furthermore, they do not understand how to strike a good work-study balance, exam revision is a source of anxiety for many people, having trouble writing essays or dissertations, uncertain about what they want to do after graduation, they may resort to alcohol or drug abuse to deal with their stress. Therefore, here are some ways to manage stress as an university student:
1. Healthy Lifestyle
Practice a healthy lifestyle. There are studies that have been done where most people who experience stress tend to overeat and feel happy after eating to deal with the stress they’re facing. However, other effects, he will get various diseases that will definitely cause health problems. Therefore, eat a healthy and balanced diet. Exercise at least 2 times a week. There is no need to do strenuous activities, just jogging, cycling or walking in the park would do. If you feel fibrous and stressed while studying, take a break and do light exercises and take healthy snacks to flush out the stress away from your system. Although we are under Movement Control Order 3.0 where we can’t do any physical activities outdoors, we carry out some simple activities or workouts at home.
2. Don’t be alone
Isolating yourself while you are under stress isn't the right way to deal with stress. You need to find someone to express your feelings to or share a story with them. When you meet someone you trust and share with them, maybe you will feel calm again to think of the best solution. If you do not have close contacts, talk to a counselor or therapist, there are contacts for mental support during trying times like these, such as the befrienders for help. Definitely a person who has more experience in managing stress would help you better overcome the stress that you're feeling. Most universities are equipped with student counseling services. Do consider these alternatives to help you during stressful times.
3. Get enough sleep
Make sure you have a proper sleep and rest routine to ensure mental health is maintained which is also a significant way to manage stress. Sleep is a great way to relax physically and mentally after doing heavy daily tasks. Stress can disrupt a person's sleep patterns. So, before going to bed, spend a few minutes to relax and take care of yourself, such as listening to music, spending some time in nature, meditation and the list goes on . A body that is well-rested is ready to take on any challenge the next day!
4. Time to rest
Taking a short break during work or completing assignments can reduce your extreme stress. Also, go on a short break on the weekends by doing your favorite activities like playing games, drawing, painting and more so that your life is balanced and always energetic. Adequate rest guarantees quality work results you’ll be satisfied with, and that’s one less thing to stress about.
5. Time Management
People become worried when they believe they are running out of time to finish a goal, which might be connected to school or job, or it could be related to feeling overwhelmed by social events. Simple time management strategies, on the other hand, might help you feel more calm and focused. Create a documented calendar, break down your work into small parts, plan ahead of time, and set aside time each day to rest or socialise. Divide your job into critical and non-important activities, as well as urgent and non-urgent ones.
As a general guideline, keep your workload modest and avoid taking on too much. Following the advice above will help you achieve and maintain a healthy balanced lifestyle. (and serves as a guide to help you during stressful times, especially during the pandemic that has taken a toll on our mental health.