7 Ways To Control Your Anxiety While At College

7 Ways To Control Your Anxiety While At College

Everyone feels anxious at some point or another, and there's plenty you can do to manage it.

Needless to say, college life is stressful. Even more so when you're a freshman still trying to find your place and figure out how to be a semi-functioning adult. I, for instance, just did laundry today and I felt like I had climbed a hundred mountains. But there's lots of ways to handle stress and anxiety. The trick is finding what works best for you. Here are a few of my go-to's when I feel like life is barreling down on me.

1. Go for a walk

Hands down the best way to relax and regain your composure after, or during, a difficult day is taking a walk outdoors. It's a similar concept to working out; the movement releases endorphins, gives your lungs and your heart a chance to reset and focus on the movement, but it's not as high-stress as running or lifting at the gym. Breathing that fresh air and just giving yourself a change of setting refreshes your brain and gives it time to engage in something other than what's bothering you. And while you're walking, you have the time and capacity to develop a plan of attack.

(If you're in AA, the Arb is 100% the most beautiful place to take your refreshing walk on campus.)

2. Meditate

Meditation doesn't have to look as aesthetic as this, I promise. It's as simple as finding a relatively quiet place, closing your eyes and focusing only on your breathing. Try your hardest not to think about anything, to just breath in and out. Picture a floating orb that gets bigger as you inhale and smaller as you exhale. This has a really calming effect when you're anxious. You're forced to relax and reset, and it brings your heart rate down so you can think more clearly.

3. Just breathe

Sometimes, finding a place to meditate isn't always feasible. But you can always stop where you are and breathe. Apple's breathe function on the iWatch sends you reminders throughout the day to complete a breathe session, calling it mindful minutes. If you just stop for one minute, and focus on breathing no matter what's around you, it has the same effect as meditating. It clears your mind and makes you feel so much calmer.

4. Take a shower

I feel like showers are the most perfect solution to all and any problems. Stressed? Take a shower. Angry? Take a shower. Writer's block? Take a shower. Sad? Take a shower. Showers are perfect, because as the water beats down on you and as you massage your hair or your body, you're relaxing your muscles and letting your blood flow. It wakes you up and something about being clean makes you feel more ready to take on the challenge.

5. Write in a journal

We write to find out what we think. Writing is one of the best ways to be mindful of yourself and your feelings and thoughts. Whenever I'm feeling anxious and can't quite pinpoint why, I write. I describe what I'm feeling, and what things are going on in my life at that moment that could be stressing me out. I make a list of all those things, and try to detail what about each thing is bothering me. But, the most important step is that I go back and write about possible solutions or just words of encouragement about each issue. It's usually incredibly effective. It might seem cheesy, but logically going each of your stressors and taking the time to understand why they're bothering you and how you can go about solving it-- it actually makes a big difference.

6. Watch some television

Distractions aren't all bad. If it's taking your mind off of your anxiety attack, it could actually be quite helpful. Watch whatever you love, but preferably something funny. Comedy and laughing reminds you to take it easy and that life doesn't have to be so serious all the time. Try to relax and unwind your tension. Don't watch a drama or thriller or horror movie, because that'll just stress you out more, most likely.

7. Turn it off

When you can, turn everything off. Zip up your backpack, put your phone on do not disturb, shut down your laptop, and just take a night in. Personal days are incredibly important to your mental health. You cannot be "on" all the time. It just doesn't work that way. And no one expects you to be. No deadline or due date is more important that your mental health and sanity. So, when you can afford it, or when you just really need it, take a day off for yourself. Keeping yourself disengaged from the constant buzz of media, even if it's just for a few hours, provides such a fresh perspective, and a much more positive one at that.

Above all, remember that you are strong and that you can and will get through this. You can do it. If you need more assistance, ask. Always ask for help, never suffer in silence.

For UMich students, consider visiting Counseling and Pyschological Services (CAPS) located in the Michigan Union at the top floor. They have wonderful resources to help you relax, recover, and get help if you need it.

Cover Image Credit: pexels

Popular Right Now

13 Gross Things Girls Do That Boys Don't Know About

From a girl, about girls.

There's always talk about how gross boys are all the time, it's now time to talk about how gross maybe even how much more disgusting girls can be. It may not even be disgusting, but just weird, but we are girls. What can we say?

1. Gorilla legs.

It's not that we don't want to...okay, that was a lie. Every girl can agree that they only shave during bathing suit season when you're wearing a dress, or when you're gonna get it on. Basically, If she shaves her legs you're special.

2. When did I last wash this bra again?

We wear the same exact bra, for days, and weeks, and who knows for how long.

3. It's not just the bra's, it's the pants too.

We wear jeans and leggings like twenty times before we think about washing them.

4. We don't wash our hair every day.

Because unwashed hair is the best styling hair. Also because looking good takes too much work.

5. We are always picking at our faces, especially pimples.

As soon as we walk by a mirror, its a must. Car mirrors are awesome to pop those suckers and pluck rampant eyebrow hairs. We pop pimples like its our job.

6. We will live in your clothes.

If you somehow let your significant other or friend wear your sweatshirt you're never getting it back... and she's never taking it off. Girls will wear that sh*t until your scent is gone because we love it.

7. We poop.

Believe it or not... it happens to us too. Women don't make it as much as a show as boys do. We hide it from you and will hold it until you're not around. And you've probably received a lot of selfies on the toilet.

8. The dreaded monthly gift.

Probably the most disgusting thing to ever happen to the human body. But everyone knows about menstruating, but most guys don't understand the other things that come along with it, like the cramps that bring period farts and the nasty bowel movements and blood clots.

9. Finding hair from our head in our butt cheeks.

Yeah, it's a thing. Your head hair crawls it's way down there occasionally.

10. We smell ourselves a lot.

We are super conscious about how we smell...especially down there.

11. We let it fly.

We will hold in our farts from you, but as soon as we are alone... that's a different story. You better hope we don't get too comfortable around you too quick.

12. Sometimes we have to improvise.

Sometimes mother nature likes to come when we aren't ready, or prepared with the supplies. There are numerous occasions where we start bleeding and have to create this bundle of toilet paper and just shove it down there.

13. Looking at our panties and trying to figure out what came out.

Sometimes you just don't know for sure.

Cover Image Credit: Buzz Feed Blue

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Whipped Cream And Stress Landed Me In The Emergency Room

Every time I ate, my stomach would retaliate and fire excruciating jolts of pain.

Imagine a mountain of whipped cream covering toaster waffles topped with blueberries. For the past few months, this was my breakfast every day. I would wake up, throw on my slippers, and trudge to the kitchen. I’d throw the waffles in the toaster for a minute, cover them with whipped cream, and sprinkle blueberries over the top. Voila! A delicious (or so I thought at the time) and quick breakfast! I really thought I had it all figured out. I was obsessed with my discovery, and I looked forward to my fluffy whipped cream mornings.

But when I think about whipped cream now, I gag. I cannot believe that I ate this for breakfast for so many weeks! First of all, the nutritional value is absolutely zero. I didn’t realize it at the time, but my “dream” breakfast wasn’t doing me any good. I had no energy or desire to do anything.

During the months that I indulged in this unhealthy breakfast, I was constantly sluggish. I stopped going to the gym, took plenty of naps, and felt burnt out all the time. I was also dealing with school stress, “what am I going to do with my life” stress, and moodiness. These factors all contributed to my bad mood and unhappiness, but the food I was eating only made it worse.

One night, I had really bad stomach pains. Like, crying in fetal position bad. Every time I ate, my stomach would retaliate and fire excruciating jolts of pain. I dealt with it for almost two days, then finally decided to go to the hospital. When they took my blood, none of the tests came back unusual. Everything looked perfect! It must have seemed like I was being dramatic; overreacting over a minor stomach ache. When the doctors sent me home, I started reading about different causes of stomach pain and inflammation in an attempt to find out why I was hurting so badly.

Stress is known to cause stomach inflammation and many other health issues. When I had all this pent-up anxiety and constant worry, I wasn’t taking care of myself. The thoughts that occupy our minds are more powerful than we give them credit for.

This experience was a huge wake-up call for me. My breakfast nowadays consists of wholesome avocado toast (basic, I know), acai bowls, and oatmeal. I have so much more energy than I did at the beginning of the semester, and I attribute that to my diet. I threw out the whipped cream and waffles and replaced them with fruits and healthy fats. As for my stress, I’m learning to manage it in a healthy way so that I don’t feel so horrible all the time. I’ll go to the gym, watch a movie, or read a book to take my mind off of my issues. Taking care of yourself is so important, and I’m glad that I realized this now rather than later.

Fueling your body with food that will give you energy and nutrients can play a huge role in your mood, stress levels, and overall well-being.

Cover Image Credit: Yakynina Anastasia

Related Content

Facebook Comments