My First Year – Handling Stress

by · April 29, 2018

The Mount offers several stress relief activities throughout the year, including the opportunity to spend a few hours with therapy dogs in the library during exams!

Feeling overwhelmed with the responsibilities of school? Olivia Mulhern, a sophomore Psychology major, talks about some of the ways she’s learned to cope with stress during her time at the Mount.


“Stress is an event that exerts physical or psychological force or pressure. From a scientific standpoint, stressors and the individual’s makeup are what create stress. Major sources of stress (stressors) include daily hassles, life changes, conflict, and even school. As a result, many college students face stress. Depending on the type of stress, not all stress is bad. However, for us college students, most stress is not good for our health. It is important to know how to handle stress and cope with positive activities.

During my freshman year of college, I suffered with a lot of stress. One of the problems that I had was I didn’t know how to properly handle my stress and decrease the amount of stressors in my everyday routine. One might think that they aren’t experiencing stress, but the anxiety feeling that individuals start to feel when they are loaded with work or exams is the beginning of stress.

One of the ways to help cope with stress is to have friends and family around. Having laughter and joy around will decrease the amount of anxiety that one might be dealing with. It will allow the mind to focus on other things rather then the stressors. Also, it allows the individual to be happy rather than frustrated or upset. Personally, when I know that my stress level is increasing, I take a break and go talk to my friends. Friends always make any situation better, even when something isn’t going the way I’d planned. Having a simple talk with family also helps distract the mind from stress.

Another way to cope with stress and anxiety is to participate in an activity that you enjoy. This might be yoga, a sport, going to the gym, or something as simple as drawing or listening to music. All these activities allow your body to calm down. The simplest and most joyful activities almost always help to alleviate stress.

Finally, it is always important to take care of your stress from the beginning rather then waiting until it is severe and you are overwhelmed. Waiting until the last moment to try to reduce stress can be difficult.

College can be stressful, especially if you’re trying to balance multiple things at once. It is important to take care of your body before anything else. If you continue to have your friends and family around, and an activity that is an escape from stress, take advantage of that. Dealing with less stress will make your college career a great experience.”


Another resource for stress relief at the Mount is talking to someone at the Student Support Center! We have friendly counselors and academic coaches who are always available to talk and provide other stress relief tips for you. Learn more here!