Your days in college are often thought to be some of the happiest days of your young adult life. In college, you are supposed to meet people who inspire you, develop passions in and out of the classroom, and discover a more heightened and developed sense of self.
However, appreciating this time in your life can be extremely difficult when dealing with mental illness, specifically anxiety. Symptoms of anxiety can include an unshakeable feeling of worry, difficulty sleeping, shortness of breath, and muscle tension. The pervasive nature of these symptoms can make the college atmosphere, which is already a high-pressure environment, seem harsh, lonely, and unfavorable.
If you, or someone you know, is experiencing anxiety on a college campus, here are some tips to help.
- Exercise. Finding some regular source of physical activity can be super helpful in soothing anxiety. Yoga, in particular, is effective in reducing stress and anxiety. Yoga classes are often located nearby or on college campuses. Some colleges or universities even offer classes for free. Check your school’s athletic programming website for information! Additionally, going for a run or a jog off campus can help to provide yourself with some needed physical and psychological distance from your school. Don’t be afraid to calm yourself with a reminder that there is a world outside of campus!
- Eat well. Your body, including your brain, needs good fuel to take care of itself. Don’t underestimate the power of a good, well-balanced diet. A dining hall constantly stocked with pizza, ice cream, and soda can be extremely tempting. Try committing yourself to eating a salad everyday at lunch. You can to mix and match new ingredients at the salad bar and see how many tasty combinations you can make! Caffeine can also heighten some symptoms of anxiety so try to limit intake of coffee or caffeinated sodas.
- Talk to your professors. Your professors are there to help you learn and they want you to learn in the most effective way. If you are struggling with anxiety in way that is preventing you from succeeding academically, try talking to them! They can work with you to figure out how to learn and take care of yourself simultaneously.
- Seek counseling. Overwhelmingly, counseling is one of the most effective treatments for anxiety in college. Even if you are not sure you have an anxiety problem, a counselor can help you to identify your struggles and strengths. To set up an appointment with our top-notch counselors, just contact us and take a step in the right direction toward mental wellness.