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Students should aim for optimal stress level


For college students, there are a host of factors that contribute to an increase in stress. Assignment and project deadlines, exams and quizzes, part-time jobs, and extra-curricular activities — all of these can make you want to pull your hair out. Managing everything simultaneously is a challenge that all college students face.

Because of this struggle, stress is generally considered to be a major factor that hinders growth. However, college students often fail to realize the motivating effects of good stress, which can be inspiring and lead them towards accomplishment.

A driving factor is essential for achieving success. After all, an unknown goal can never be achieved. This is where good stress, or in scientific terms, eustress, comes into play. Eustress provides a sense of challenge and motivation that can lead to greater performance; it helps students remain alert and rise to the challenges that they face in their day-to-day lives.

For example, if bonus points are associated with a project, motivated students will take extra initiative to do their best on it. The need to earn every single point may induce in them some anxiety, but this anxiety will ultimately drive them toward a better outcome.

AnimaSahu11-5Now, the bigger question is, how do we achieve an optimal level of stress? Stress management is the answer. College students try to manage stress constantly without even realizing it. Too much work and too little time is the tagline for the major stress conditions. All that is necessary is to schedule work in a timely manner.

However, that's not always an easy job. Keeping up with a schedule is difficult as work encroaches into other commitments, which increases causes trouble, especially considering Increased stress can have several health and psychological impacts. Anxiety is the most noticeable symptom of all. However, low to moderate levels of stress drive us toward our goal.

Optimal stress maintenance is not an unattainable feat. However, we need to understand that the ideal degree of stress may vary from individual to individual. Some people tend to work better under strain while others just cannot handle the pressure. Therefore, every individual should understand the eustress level suited for them and plan their schedule accordingly.

College students schedules are constantly in flux, so they should also add the component of flexibility to their schedules as well as to their attitudes. Time for relaxation coupled within busy work is a great way to regulate the intensity of your stress. Find a release suited to your personality; it can be listening to music, exercising, reading a book or just taking a small walk.

The way we think about things can make all the difference in how we react to events around us. We should remind ourselves of our different tasks as challenges and not threats. Positive thinking and planning ahead are necessary for attaining eustress.

 

Reach the columnist at asahu4@asu.edu or follow her on Twitter @anima_sahu

Editor’s note: The opinions presented in this column are the author’s and do not imply any endorsement from The State Press or its editors.

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