Stressed Out?

Ann Charron

Ann Charron

As SDSU reaches the halfway point in the semester, many students’ stress levels will be rising.

Cramming for midterms, working part-time jobs and finding time for friends can seem overwhelming to the average student but there are ways to deal with stress before it builds up.

“I’ll just try to get away from college life,” Rick Hansen, a sophomore from Faulkton, S.D., said.

Hansen, an engineering major, tries to take a time out for himself by visiting friends and going out to parties.

While Hansen recommends being around people to relieve stress, other students try to get away from it all.

Marie Fitz, a junior from Britton, S.D., advises students who are stressed out, to take time to be alone. Fitz often goes for bike rides to relieve her stress.

“Basically I just try to get away from everybody and be alone,” Fitz said.

Jill Anderson, a sophomore from Rapid City, tries to make time for herself and often uses the weekends for this purpose.

“I do nothing on weekends, watch movies and hang out with friends,” Anderson said.

As some students try to relax by being alone, others get out and participate in activities they enjoy.

“I play flag football except when I have to study,” Jon Halter, a senior from Grand Rapids, Minn., said.

When it comes to stress, each person has their own way of dealing with it. It all comes down to the individual.

“Students shouldn’t let work or school dominate their entire life,” Michelle Ruesink, staff counselor at the SDSU counseling center, said.

Ruesink counsels students individually on stress management skills through self-assessment and coping skills tests. After finding the student’s weaknesses, Ruesink then provides guidance as to what the student needs to work on.

“If they take care of themselves spiritually, emotionally, physically and mentally, they’ll better be able to cope,” Ruesink said.

Ruesink recommends finding a balance between the activities students need to do and the activities they want to do.

“Take a walk, be with friends, along with studying for that Chem test,” Ruesink said.

But how do students find that happy medium?

Ruesink gives these tips for students who need to relieve stress in their life: be a scholar, go to class, see your advisor once a term, work out daily, sleep six to eight hours a night, eat breakfast daily, avoid procrastination, be good to yourself and others, focus on doing one thing at a time, set a realistic schedule, be kind to unkind people, laugh easily and often and learn from the past but live in the present.

If students find themselves not being able to deal with stress on their own, Ruesink recommends seeking assistance, through counseling or spiritual services.

“Take one day at a time to see what you need to do to get through the day,” Ruesink said.