Are College Students Experiencing A 'Stress Culture'?
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

Are College Students Experiencing A 'Stress Culture'?

It's not a competition.

Are College Students Experiencing A 'Stress Culture'?

Stress. The word is thrown around in all sorts of contexts. It is said by almost everyone too. I know that even I used the word (at five years old) in a conversation with my mom. She was astounded to not only discover I knew the word stress, but that I, at such a young age, had worries.

So what does stress really mean? It is defined by Merriam-Webster as a tense mental state that is characterized by worry and anxiety. Psychology Today states that stress is a response triggered by something that upsets our mental and physical equilibrium. Both are true, but why is it so prevalent?

With the growing trend and acknowledgment that everyone experiences a type of stress in their daily life, it has become almost a “must have” to be stressed. The general consensus is that if you aren’t stressed, you’re not working hard enough at whatever you’re pursuing. This is not true.

Stress is not an indicator of working hard, but more of a reaction to pressures, worries and time. Time management is something most of us struggle with and is the reason why we become anxious about our work. In a world filled with constant and never-ending deadlines, we never have a chance to rest. It doesn’t matter if you’re a student or working adult, a child or a parent: everyone is always counting time. This is what creates that pressure; thus, prompting an increase of adrenaline and cortisol throughout the body.

All of us don’t map out our time well or do not prioritize like we should. Those of us who manage time well do not have to be concerned with deadlines. However, this isn’t to say those people haven’t worked hard and put effort into their studies, work, careers.

It’s especially prominent in college to find the atmosphere permeated with the idea that we have to compete with each other on how much stress we carry. I’ve seen it on all the different campuses I’ve been on, including my own high school. In a way, we would “brag” about how much we had to do this weekend and that day.

I only noticed it during my freshman orientation when someone told me not to play into the stress culture on campus. Since then I realized that I want to work hard but without the jittery, agitated state I maintained for most of high school; I didn’t want to hear from others how many papers and assignments and other small things they had to get done within a small frame of time.

Of course, recognizing the problem does not make it go away, but it allowed me to change my habits and myself; I’ve changed the way I react to pressure. It’s not okay to be constantly stressed; your mental health may continually degenerate because of it. College can already be overwhelming as it is without making adjustments to lower stress, so there’s no reason to think that being on the edge, nervous and unhappy, is the way to live life.

Live life without unnecessary agitations and don’t listen what other people have to say about their own stressful amounts of work!

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less
a man and a woman sitting on the beach in front of the sunset

Whether you met your new love interest online, through mutual friends, or another way entirely, you'll definitely want to know what you're getting into. I mean, really, what's the point in entering a relationship with someone if you don't know whether or not you're compatible on a very basic level?

Consider these 21 questions to ask in the talking stage when getting to know that new guy or girl you just started talking to:

Keep Reading...Show less

Challah vs. Easter Bread: A Delicious Dilemma

Is there really such a difference in Challah bread or Easter Bread?

loaves of challah and easter bread stacked up aside each other, an abundance of food in baskets

Ever since I could remember, it was a treat to receive Easter Bread made by my grandmother. We would only have it once a year and the wait was excruciating. Now that my grandmother has gotten older, she has stopped baking a lot of her recipes that require a lot of hand usage--her traditional Italian baking means no machines. So for the past few years, I have missed enjoying my Easter Bread.

Keep Reading...Show less

Unlocking Lake People's Secrets: 15 Must-Knows!

There's no other place you'd rather be in the summer.

Group of joyful friends sitting in a boat
Haley Harvey

The people that spend their summers at the lake are a unique group of people.

Whether you grew up going to the lake, have only recently started going, or have only been once or twice, you know it takes a certain kind of person to be a lake person. To the long-time lake people, the lake holds a special place in your heart, no matter how dirty the water may look.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments