7 Ways to Reduce College Stress

It’s no surprise that many college students feel stressed. Whether it’s cramming for tests, worrying about financials, or managing being on their own for the first time, students often become overwhelmed and most often don’t know how to deal with it.

Here’s to knowing better for next time!

1. Actually study

For most, it helps to address the problem head-on. By ignoring and procrastinating the stress, the stress will inevitably just come back. By attacking the anxiety and figuring out what you need to do to get the job done, a satisfying feeling will result instead of more anxiety. Work with the stress, not against it.

2. Practice good study habits

Take practice tests, look at questions and textbooks, write in a journal, organize notes or practice time management. I personally find it relieving to stare at my planner and schedule out when I will study, take breaks, and then set goals for each day and for the entire week. It clears my mind and allows me to do my activities more efficiently knowing I have flexibility in my free time.

3. Sleep

I am a FIRM believer in 8+ hours of sleep. Sleep deprivation can affect your mood, memory, physical and mental health, all contributing to stress. Trying to narrow down what causes your stress becomes easier when you can rule out sleep deprivation.

4. Eat well

And I don’t mean pig out on the campus dining hall. Proper diet, including fruits and veggies, feeds your mind and soul, not just your body. Caffeine isn’t always the answer.

5. Exercise

If you’ve ever seen Legally Blonde, you know physical activity releases endorphins, and “endorphins make you happy!” It also can be a nice distraction, releasing tension and allowing for a clear mind. Exercise burns of the stress and helps you sleep better.

6. Go outside

Take a deep breath of fresh air, take a walk around campus. Whether you’re staring at a screen or a piece of paper, it’s nice to just take a break from the hectic life of being a student and touch in with nature. Instead of turning on the television and tying yourself to your dorm, do something good for your body. Listen to music, call your friends (or *ahem* your mom), allow some “me” time.

7. Remember, everything is temporary

You will get past this. Everyone has that one hard class, that one difficult professor, but it does not define them. Your life does not depend on the miniscule situation that causes stress. Enjoy life, and know it moves quickly. (Call your mom!)

Which of these tips do you rely on to reduce stress? Are there any others we missed? Share them in the comments.


Rebecca Caro is a first year student at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. She is currently studying in the field of actuarial science and is part of FSU’s Honor Program, as well as a variety of clubs including the Women in Science, Math, and Engineering club. Although she takes academics very seriously, she spends her free time in a dance studio, at the gym, and at the local library. She takes her physical and mental health seriously as well, and loves to take care of her body and mind. She has worked with children in the past for three years, and has enjoyed doing so. She also loves to help others and better herself – she is excited to achieve this in the future with Cengage.

2 replies
  1. Jenny S. says:

    Hello Rebecca,

    Thank you so much for this blog, I’ve been looking at ways to reduce my stress in college, all those papers and overwhelming studying. You listed some very good tips, like going outside and just taking a walk. I’m glad I found your blog.

  2. Debby says:

    These tips are very useful. I feel stress whenever it’s near the final. Just as you said, everything is temporary, hang in a little bit, everything will be fine. Thanks!


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