Learning Commons Toolshed Seminar discusses methods for combating stress

Category:  News
Wednesday, April 12th, 2017 at 9:20 PM

College can be a stressful place. Students are bombarded with new and challenging obstacles upon arriving and sometimes succumb to failure. Whether they are battling test anxiety or trying to get over a fear of public speaking, many students are faced with a myriad of stressors that may negatively affect their grades.

Aaron Hunsinger, an academic success coordinator, held a Learning Commons Toolshed Seminar on April 4 and 5 to discuss his methods for combating stress.

He covered a few different topics, but organization was the key to Hunsinger’s seminar.

“Organization leads to less stress, because when you’re on top of things and you know what’s going on, you have less to worry about," he said.

The first topic Hunsinger presented was the importance of effective time management. One of the things he has noticed with students is that they have problems effectively managing their time. Many students struggle to find a balance between their social lives and their academic lives.

“You’re paying to be in school. You’re not paying to be social,” he said.

Hunsinger also explained how exercising can help students deal with their stress and suggested that a good workout can set a mind on the right path.

“Exercising releases endorphins that make you feel better,” he said.

According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), exercising causes the brain to release endorphins, which are neurochemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers. Hunsinger mentioned that jogging and weightlifting are some good methods of exercising.

He also discussed how preparation is another key to removing stress and how being prepared can relieve a lot of self- induced stress. He then introduced an effective method for setting goals, called SMART.

First, the goal needs to be specific enough so one can understand exactly what they are trying to accomplish. Next, the goal needs to be measurable so the progress can be evaluated.

After that, the goal should be attainable so that the expectations are not too high. The goal also needs to be realistic and relevant. He said making unrealistic goals can cause one to develop more stress. Lastly, the goal needs to be time-bound so there is sufficient time to achieve it.

Hunsinger ended his seminar by presenting a meditation technique known as active deep breathing. He said it is important to get enough oxygen to the brain because when one is stressed or nervous, it deprives oxygen to the brain, which can cause more stress.

Reina Smith, a freshman at Edinboro, said she thought the seminar was very informative, and she learned some good techniques about reducing stress.

“I thought it was very educational. I’m not really good with stress or anxiety, so I think it really helped,” Smith said.

Aaron Foster-Williams can be reached at eupnews.spectator@gmail.com. 

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