When the brain responds to different life demands it can produce a stress response. Exercise, work, school, major life changes, or traumatic events—can be stressful—can affect your health. Paying attending to how you manage minor or major life events, "stress events" is important for overall health. Being a college student is another type of stressor and can further complicate your stress responses and possibly impact academic success.
The tips below can assist with responding to stress. Links on the right are also available as resources. Most importantly, seek assistance when you feel stress is building. Address it before it negatively impacts your ability to academically success.
Adapted from 5 Things to Know About Stress Brochure from the National Institute of Mental Health
Identifying what and which life events stress you out is important. This short list can provide some insight into what might provide a stressor that needs addressing.
Being a student includes many opportunities to be stressed out. Think of the examples below and determine how they might impact you.
Life events, outside of college commitments, also provide stress. Things like:
Reflecting on these or other issues impacting your life can help you identify tools or actions you can take to reduce your stress level.
Students of color have a unique and difficult set of stressors to address, due to being a student of color.
Stressors could include:
These are everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership; like ethnicity or culture.
They can impact: people of color, people with disabilities, religious or sexual minorities. An aggression might be something like complimenting an English Language Learner on how they have "such a great English speaking skills."
Adapted from Psychology Today article, Wing Sue, D., Nov. 17, 2010
This is the intense and consistent feeling students might have that others, from the majority culture, might determine they are not competent enough. In this case, students of color might feel that those from the majority culture are going to determine they are not smart enough to be in college classes.
This is very damaging and stressful for students. The tips section outlines approaches all students can take to address these stressors.
Although students of color and others from traditionally marginalized communities have a social
resilience, these issues are never-the-less still present. Visit the RISE Center in East Building, E126 for assistance and support if feeling stressed out about these issues.
Depending on what you might be dealing with there are many free, on-campus resources available to all students that can help reduce stress due to managing your college life.
The Health Nerd gives free and easy suggestions for reducing stress.
This Ted Talk video explains how stress impacts your body and how to change your stress levels.
This Ted Talk looks at how stress impacts your brain and what you can do about it.
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