College Stress And Workload Shouldn't Be A Competition
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Mental Health

Stress Levels Are Not A Competition, Stop Trying To Downplay Others’ Feelings

I don't care if you're a nursing major, a communications major, or an art major… all college students are stressed.

two women working together

There have been so many instances where a friend is not even able to finish saying how hard their day has been, before another friend butts in with the classic, "Oh, honey, you don't even know hard." This just absolutely baffles me. Where has the support in friendships gone?

Do people not care about making others feel better anymore?

Whether you're in high school, college, or the work world, you know stress can get to be too much sometimes. And, quite frankly, there is nothing worse than feeling completely stressed out and having your good friends downplay your workload by saying theirs is worse. Sometimes, people just need to vent.

Yes, your friend may be complaining about not wanting to do a single take-home quiz, while you have stacks of readings to get through, essays to complete, and research to do, but still… let them complain. You cannot always be 100% certain that that's all there is going on in their lives. Maybe their relationship is struggling, they're facing family problems, or they've just been having a rough week overall. Homework is an easier, on-the-surface topic to complain about, rather than opening up and venting about deeper issues. So, the last thing anyone needs is for someone to tell them that they have "nothing to worry about," because it isn't always the case.

We need to stop comparing ourselves to others — and that means stop comparing our academics too.

Why make someone feel guilty about stressing over their homework simply because you have slightly more to do? Everyone is different; we all handle workloads in our own ways. I personally would much rather write a paper than complete math problems, while my roommate is the total opposite. Because of this, if she is worried about writing an essay, I'm not about to say to her, "You're fine, it's easy." What may be easy for me is not necessarily easy for anyone else. We all have different strengths, and we need to respect that.

So, the next time someone tells you that they're stressed, just nod your head. Agree with them, but don't dismiss their feelings. Everyone is stressed, some just know how to handle it better than others. People should not be put at fault for getting easily overwhelmed.

I know that I get overly stressed about simple things, but I still hate people totally disregarding it.

If someone tells you that they're overwhelmed with work, please do not reply with a list of things that you have to do. Be there for others, and hopefully, they'll be there for you. Let's all complain about, deal with, and finally overcome our stress, together.

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