Ashton Eaton’s key to dealing with stress is simple: just stay cool and stay focused. Stress can cause many ill-effects to our body and mental health. Therefore, we need to cope up with stress that is caused by the challenges in life.
Stress can be caused in students by various factors like examinations, surprise tests, deadline of an unsubmitted assignment, noise pollution, etc. There are two types of stress – distress and eustress. Stress affects us mentally and physically. It causes various diseases. It decreases our confidence and makes us lonely. I have written about this in detail in my previous article.
Steps for stress management
- Identify the cause of stress. You need to know what has caused the stress. The cause can be a presentation, a speech, a dance performance, etc. In students, the most common stressor is an examination or a stage performance at school. Some students get stressed during preparing for the examinations, they are a prey of self doubt and low self esteem.
- Reaction to a stressful situation plays a key role in managing it. Identify how you are dealing with this situation emotionally. This is the second step and the easiest step to regulate stress quickly. You should know about the emotions that you are feeling, if you know this then you can share this with anyone or can deal with it faster.
- Seek solutions for avoiding stressors. Stressors are the challenges and the situations due to which we acquire/experience stress. However, avoiding stressors in every situation is not a good thing and this will eventually decrease your self confidence. If you feel stressed by delivering speeches in front of the public, then you can imagine that there are no people in the room. You can also focus on only one person in the room and then deliver the speech to them.
- Identifying symptoms of stress is as crucial as the reactions to it. For example, during a presentation to an audience, and you have blanks of memory, you are uncomfortable, and you are distracted. These are the symptoms of stress and they can derail your presentation in front of the audience.
- Exercise. It can help to improve your sleep. And better sleep means better stress management. Exercise also seems to help mood. Part of the reason may be that it stimulates your body to release a number of hormones like endorphins and endocannabinoids that help block pain, improve sleep, and sedate you. People who exercise also tend to feel less anxious and more positive about themselves.
- A healthy diet can lessen the effects of stress, build up your immune system, level your mood, and lower your blood pressure. Lots of added sugar and fat can have the opposite effect. And junk food can seem even more appealing when you’re under a lot of stress.
- Do Yoga. This is a form of exercise, but it can also be a meditation. There are many types of yoga. The ones that focus on slow movement, stretching, and deep breathing are best for lowering your anxiety and stress. Here are some asanas that can relieve stress – child pose, bridge pose, corpse pose, camel pose, cobra pose. Here are some pranayamas that students should practice – bhramari, nadi shodhan, shitali, and anulom- vilom.
In a nutshell – slow down, keep calm, be positive, take it easy, unplug, enjoy life, have fun, breathe, go outside, relax and meditate.