Stress on students

My name is Miranda Robbins. I am a recent Magna Cum Laude graduate of the Savannah College of Art and Design, with a BFA in Performing Arts and a Minor in Vocal Performance. I am an actress, singer, musician, and teacher. I am currently building a life with my fiance in Maryland, and I hope to one day make a steady career in film acting.

There’s no doubt that college is one of the most stress-inducing phases of  our lives. There is unending pressure to be sure of which direction you want your life and your career to go, and what your contribution to society will be. You worry about making the most of your time in college, sometimes to the point of hindering your college success instead of helping it. Here are three full-proof methods of stress reduction which I guarantee will help you enjoy your college experience, tenfold.

1. Meditation

Of all the stress-reducing techniques I’ve tried, I have found meditation to be the most beneficial. I know some of you might hear the word “meditation” and think to yourself, “No way, i’m not into spirituality!” or “I don’t know how to meditate!” Rest assured, meditation comes in many different forms…and is MUCH easier than you think. Meditation can be anything from laying on your bed and zoning out with your favorite music playing in the background to full-on guided meditations. Anything where you can let any stressing thoughts flow out of your mind and focus on a calming sound can be considered meditation. My favorite meditation method is to listen to guided meditations and meditation music on YouTube. Not only is there an endless library of meditations of all lengths and types on YouTube, but it’s all free.

2. Candles/Incense/Oils

Many of us do not realize how scent effects our brain. Lighting a candle of your favorite scent will relax your body and mind by releasing endorphins through ingesting pleasant smells. Having a relaxing aroma fill the room in which you study may help you retain information by putting you in a calm mood. You can light a candle, burn some incense sticks or cones, use an oil burner, or even a plug-in air freshener. We can get so used to certain rooms and the odors they give off that we might not notice unpleasant odors. Make your dorm or apartment much more homey by releasing wonderful smells into the air. Smells that bring you happiness are smells that rid you of stress!

3. Make Time For YOU

Hey you! Yeah, you! You’re a human being, did you know that? You aren’t a robot. You cannot spend your entire college career working and studying without cutting yourself some slack. Find something that you enjoy doing that can be an escape for you. Do you like to go to the movies? Do you like comic books? Does that daily cup of coffee put you at ease? Have something that you do every day to give your brain a break. Go to a movie. Buy yourself the new Spiderman comic book. Sit at your favorite coffee shop drinking your white chocolate mocha. Take a moment every day to do something that makes YOU happy. Your brain will thank you.

We often forget how important it is to give ourselves a break, to accept that college is a nerve-racking time in our lives in which we must come out alive. The only way to do that is by reducing our daily stress. Stress reduction is easy and so very vital to our survival. Try one – or all – of these methods, and see how much of a difference it makes!

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