Tucked behind the stairway by C-Wing, the Center for Health & Counseling Services (CHCS) at Ramapo College offers students free, confidential therapy sessions and informative workshops to consult the aura of mental health on college campuses. With the spring 2019 semester in full swing, stress is beginning to seep back into students’ lives, so it’s important to become familiar with some stress-reducing tips and management skills.
In the 2017 American College Health Association – Health Assessment, 45 percent of college students said they experience more than average stress, with 87 percent reporting they felt overwhelmed by their workload.
With these high levels of stress, it can be important to take a step back and put your problems into perspective. Judith Green, the director of the CHCS has strong experience in the psychology field, accumulating more than 15 years.
“I think one way to put one’s problems into perspective is to engage in being grateful for what one does have in terms of support, friends, access to an education, (not material things),” Green said.
Times of stress, pessimism, anxiety and depression can alter our ways of thinking and make it hard for us to be grateful for what we have. By reflecting on our family, friends and our personal ability to access an education, we are able to shift into a more positive mindset. Research has even shown that people who feel gratitude are happier and report less stress.
Aside from being grateful, another thing someone can do is volunteer. “It is hard to feel bad for oneself when you are helping others,” Green said.
Every couple days, the Center for Student Involvement (CSI) at Ramapo College sends out a mass email to its students, detailing the week’s campus events and advertising for local volunteering gigs.
Getting involved in volunteering not only helps those in need, but has proven to be beneficial for the volunteer. Some benefit volunteers experience reduced stress and depression and increased confidence and happiness. During volunteer activities, good hormones and brain activity spikes — which shapes a more fulfilled positive mindset.
Having the right perspective can make all the difference in managing your anxiety. Helping people in need can be very humbling, for it can show that stress is minimal when compared to what others can suffer through on a daily basis.
Be Aware of Campus Resources
As the spring 2019 semester unfolds, it’s important to be aware of the resources Ramapo College offers to students in need of mental counseling. The CHCS hosts an experienced team of psychology experts ready to help students with an array of issues. Setting appointments with one of this campus’ mental counselors is free of charge and beneficial in helping you navigate your feelings.