College is a very stressful time for every student. As college students, we are tasked with having to manage constantly conflicting meeting schedules, work schedules, and most importantly, class schedules. We are constantly worried about the present while also having to ensure we are prepared for the future.
For every student, this overload of work inevitably leads to increasing levels of stress. How we handle and cope with this stress truly defines our college experiences. During my time at Texas A&M, I have learned the value in taking time to de-stress and how it allows me to handle my course load in a much more effective manner.
During my freshman year I took 15 hours, joined two organizations, and I was also working a part-time job. I worked incredibly hard and did as well as I expected in my first semester. While my grades were good, I was not as happy as I expected to be after finishing my first semester of what many people refer to as, “some of the best times of their lives.”
I quickly realized that I was spending way too much time worrying about school, and not taking enough time to enjoy myself. There is more to life and school than grades. Mental health and your happiness are very important and can prevent you from doing well in school.
The next semester I decided to plan time each day to just take a break from school and work, and spend 30 minutes to an hour doing whatever I felt like. Whether it was watching TV, listening to music, playing basketball, or just spending time with my friends, I took time each day to relax and de-stress. During this time, I did not think about school or work or any of my obligations.
I found this time to de-stress really helped my overall mood. My stress decreased significantly. I started feeling a lot happier and with that, I had an improved attitude towards my work. Now after more stressful events, such as exams, I always try to treat myself in an attempt to de-stress. Often I treat myself to my favorite meal or just do something I have not had the chance to do because I have been busy studying. De-stressing allows me to push the reset button on my built up stress.
During school, it is easy for stress to build up and start to overwhelm us. When over-stressed, we tend to make bad decisions and perform poorly in our classes. That is why it is crucial to spend time doing what you enjoy. Life is too short not to enjoy it.