College can be the most magical and rewarding time in your life- you're discovering new interests, chasing your dreams, building a career, and finding new friends. However, sometimes the most rewarding time in your life can also be the most challenging. Whether it is stress, lack of sleep, burnout, or physical and mental health challenges, what happens outside of the classroom can easily evolve into something that will affect a student's academic performance. This guide is here to let you know you're not alone in facing these challenges, and to provide you with tips and tricks for dealing with stress, sleep, burnout, and other personal wellness challenges you might face.
This guide is not meant to take the place of or serve as a physician's advice or opinion. Please talk to your doctor about what treatments or life-style changes might work best for you. If you require help with a mental or physical accommodation, please see the contact information for Student Support Services listed at the bottom of this page.
Medline Plus defines Stress as, "A feeling of emotional or physical tension. It can come from any event or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry, or nervous. Stress is your body's reaction to a challenge or demand." (Stress and Your Health, n.d.) Stress can happen due to happy events like a wedding or birth of a child, or sad events like the death of a loved one or a car accident. Whether the stress was caused by a happy or sad event, the feeling of being overwhelmed is familiar for many people.
If you're finding yourself feeling overwhelmed and stressed out due to your extra workload as a student, or your personal life: don't worry, you are not alone. Although sometimes unpleasant, Stress is a completely normal part of life and there are many strategies to help you cope. MayoClinic suggests that those suffering from stress try "The 4 A's of Stress Management". To learn about the 4 A's please check out the following infographic adapted from sources listed at the bottom of the page.
Change Your Mind To Change Your Stress
Alternative Approaches to Stress
One of the most important ways to minimize physical and mental stress, is to get 7-8 hours of sleep each night. While getting enough sleep can be challenging as a new college student, it is vital your long-term health and success both in and outside the classroom. In order to get enough sleep you might need to give up some late night Netflix viewing, plan your meals for earlier in the day, and set your phone to a "do not disturb" setting after a certain time each evening. All of these suggestions can help you to maintain a balanced schedule and make it easier to have an established bedtime.
For more tips and tricks about how to get better quality sleep, or just to learn how important it is to your overall well-being, check out the following infographics and resources adapted from the sources listed at the bottom of the page.
Receiving an average of 8 hours of quality sleep per night is an important part of overall health and academic success. The benefits of sufficient sleep are numerous, especially for students, as sleep is essential for increased memory consolidation, learning, decision making, and critical thinking. Studies show that students who receive 7-9 hours of sleep had higher grade point averages than students who didn’t get 7-9 hours of sleep regularly. Read more here:
Sleep: Your Energy 401(k)
Getting a Good Night's Sleep
College is sometimes described as "a marathon, not a sprint". Pursuing a degree is one of the biggest investments of time, money, and resources that a person can make. It's no surprise that the hectic schedule and demands of 2-4 years of coursework can leave students feeling burnt-out and in many cases lacking the passion that started them down the initial path to their degrees.
Another potential problem is digital burn-out. While we live in an ever-evolving and even more closely connected digital world than ever before, the lack of boundaries that exist and the pressure that goes with being available 24/7 can add to the mental load of burn-out. This is why experts recommend taking digital breaks and time away from your devices to recharge in nature or with loved ones.
If you are struggling with mental health, think you might need counseling, or need an accommodation,
please contact Student Support Services at the campus location you plan to attend by email or phone to set up an appointment.
Online students may email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Angela Wheelus,Ed.S, LPC, CPCS- Floyd/Paulding: 706-368-7707
Tara Holdawpf, MS, LAPC- Marietta/Douglasville: 678-872-8504
Dorothy Moragn, MS, Ed, LPC, CPCS- Cartersville: 678-872-8012
Kimberly Linek, MSW- Cartersville & Paulding: 678-872-8004
Maritza Pitelli , M.Ed. LPC- Marietta, Douglasville, & Floyd: 706-368-7536
WIOA(Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act)
Megan Connor, BS- Floyd: 706-368-7768
Kyle Wheeless- Floyd, Cartersville, & Paulding: 706-368-7804
6 steps to better sleep. (n.d.). Mayo Clinic. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/sleep/art-20048379
Know the signs of job burnout. (n.d.). Mayo Clinic. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/burnout/art-20046642
Need stress relief? Try the 4 A’s. (n.d.). Mayo Clinic. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress-relief/art-20044476
Stress and your health: Medlineplus medical encyclopedia. (n.d.). Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003211.htm