This year. Wow.
When we thought things would feel a bit more “normal” in the world, new variants of COVID-19 pop-up. Breakthrough and new cases have surged and college students are left not sure exactly how to handle it all.
As a college student, you are also navigating the “normal” concerns college students in California have including:
- Friends and family
- Dating and relationships
- And the list goes on!
No, Type-A…you don’t have to actually make your list here. Unless it would be helpful. Then, please, carry on. Over the past two years, whether you were in high school or college, you likely did some type of virtual learning. You may have been able to engage in in-person education as well! No matter what, you were likely faced with hybrid learning of some sort in a world that wasn’t fully ready to embrace it. And let’s face it, that was tough. Amidst all the stress, anxiety, and overwhelm you experienced at school, you’re also dealing with your fears surrounding the health and safety of your family due to an unprecedented global pandemic.
2029-2021 hasn’t been easy for anyone. But, I’d say college students have it pretty tough right now. College students face a unique set of struggles. As a result, life can feel pretty overwhelming and even unbearable at times. It’s no surprise people seek anxiety treatment for support. And, this fails to mention the common hardships many are experiencing right now.
Common Issues and Concerns College Students Face in 2021
Remember that list I said you could make earlier? Yes, let’s go ahead and lay them all out here, now. Of course, college students have different concerns based on their year and program. But, these are some of the most common issues and sources of stress for college students. I wonder what else might be coming up for you right now? Feel free to leave a comment below, if you’d like to share more.
- Mental health
- Physical health
- Passing classes
- Money and financial aid
- Keeping in contact with family and friends
- New place, new state, etc.
- Internships, jobs, responsibilities
- Pregnancies and parenting
- Drama with friends or colleagues
- Family & Caregiving
- Safe Space
- Support issues for people without family
- Life transitions such as breakups, moving, graduating, starting a new job, etc.
Dealing with the symptoms of anxiety may be challenging, but with a little MOXIE you can overcome these struggles.
As you can see from this list, there are many reasons why college students often experience mental health struggles during this transitional time. It’s nothing to feel shame about. A Boston University study in 2021 found that 83 percent of students said their mental health had negative effects on their academic performance within the past month. In fact, two-thirds of college students are struggling with loneliness and feeling isolated. So, you’re not alone.
Life may feel dark when you’re struggling with these things. But, the good news is, there’s hope for a brighter tomorrow. Now I know you may be rolling your eyes thinking I sound a bit corny right now, but it’s true. I’ve worked with many college students and have helped them cope with tough times. Together, we have been able to help them move forward in life with confidence.
There’s no substitute for working with a trained anxiety therapist. But, today I want to offer you a few coping tips to help you deal with the anxiety you’re facing.
Tips for Coping with Anxiety
Tip #1: Learn How to Use Your Breath
Learning breathing exercises to reduce anxiety can help you find calm when stressed. Your breath is something you always have with you. So, breathing exercises are something any college student can do without drawing much attention.
Here’s an example of the 4-7-8 breathing exercise that I often share with my clients:
- Sit tall
- Put the tip of your tongue on the roof of your mouth
- Breathe in through your nose for a count of 4
- Hold your breath for a count of 7
- Exhale for a count of 8
- Do this 3 more times at least twice a day
Tip #2: Journal
Writing, recording, or drawing about the emotions you’re experiencing is a powerful way to release them. Journaling allows you to reflect on the things that are bothering you in a productive way. It allows you to work these feelings out, rather than ruminating on them.
I encourage you to not only write down what’s bothering you but reflect upon it after it’s on paper. Re-read what you’ve written, think about it, and examine the truth of the things you’re worried about. Ask yourself if there are other ways to think about your fears and write those down. Then, list your strengths and come up with a plan on how to use those to cope with the challenges you’re having.
Doing this many times a week for a few minutes can reduce your anxiety. Plus, it can help you develop a healthier way of thinking about your worries.
Tip # 3: Take Good Physical Care of Yourself
If you’re not caring for your physical self, then you can’t care for yourself mentally. It can be tempting to cope with unhealthy and even self-destructive behaviors. But, those only leave you with feelings of an emotional or physical hungover later.
Many studies confirm that exercise, sleep, hygiene, and eating well can reduce anxiety.
Tip #4: Talk to Someone
Being vulnerable and talking about your struggles can feel very hard. Especially if you’ve experienced rejection in the past when you’ve shared your pain. But talking about the thoughts your having can be very powerful and helps you heal.
Talking to your friends and family can be helpful. But talking to an anxiety therapist allows you to share your feelings in a safe, non-judgemental space. They can help you process the root cause of your anxiety and help you cope with any present sources of distress.
I work with college students just like yourself. And, I also specialize in counseling for women in California and help them cope with anxiety. I would be honored to work with you as well!
Begin Anxiety Treatment in Orange County, CA
College opens us up to so many new experiences both exciting and stressful. You don’t have to face your anxiety alone. Our caring therapists would be happy to offer support from our Orange County, CA-based therapy practice. To start your therapy journey, please follow these simple steps:
- Schedule a free consultation
- Meet with a caring therapist
- Start feeling inner calm, and enjoy your college experience
Other Services offered at Moxie Family Therapy
Anxiety treatment isn’t the only service provided at our Orange County, CA-based therapy practice. Other services include counseling for young adults, teens, children, and couples. We also offer therapy for therapists, clinical supervision, LGBTQ therapy, and more. Contact us today or visit our blog to learn how we can support you in reclaiming your moxie!