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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

SHAWCing Tips: Stress

You probably need no reminder that stress is a commonly cited obstacle to health and wellness. Being stressed is itself an unpleasant feeling, one that can lead to weight gain and a weakened immune system by way of cortisol and other hormones. To manage stress unhealthily is another source of, well, stress.The American Psychological Association (APA) indicates that our generation leans on alcohol and food. What you may not have heard, and what the APA recently found, is that another metric is causing our generation still more stress.

The stress differential – the difference between how stress you feel and how much stress you think is healthy or normal for someone your age – is at its highest in five years for people born between 1980 and 1994, the Millennial generation. As you might have guessed, part of the problem here is that there are more reported stressors. Issues exacerbated by our financial climate, including money, work and the cost of housing, are the most commonly reported sources of stress.

Reading this is probably stressing you out more, so let’s get to solutions: Psychologists claim that coping with stress is a two-part process. First, how you appraise stressful situations is key. If you find your first response to a stressor is cursing below your breath or yelling at your roommate or wallowing in despair, practice instead the words, “Okay, that’s a challenge, but I can handle it.” Second, what you do about stress is important too. If there’s good news to be found in the APA study, it’s that our generation is notable for proactive stress-management techniques, ranging over exercise, meditation, mindfulness and yoga. And no one expects you to go it alone. Between CAPS, The House, Health and Education Promotion (HEP) and the Student Health Center, there are a number of places on campus that are willing to load your stress-management arsenal.

The ASUCD Student Health and Wellness Committee (SHAWC) aims to promote and address important health-related issues on campus. We serve as a liaison between ASUCD and campus health organizations, clubs and resources. If you have SHAWCing suggestions, questions or tips, please e-mail us at shawcucd@gmail.com and “Like” us on our Facebook page!

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