5 things you can do to make college less stressful

Bethany Ortiz, Humans of PVCC Editor

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Lessen your stress in college by using these 5 easy tips.

Collect Phone Numbers — Make friends with those around you in class, then get their phone numbers. College is different from high school in the sense that often students don’t know each other. The people you see every day will change as time goes by. So, once a precedent is set of where you will sit in class, you should try to exchange numbers or emails with those around you. Think of it as an insurance policy. If you are ever absent, you can text or email someone from the class and receive updates, notes and classwork from them. It is important for college students to build confidences with one another because college is also about networking. Becoming friends with the right people can become invaluable. The more connections, the better.

Research Your Professors — This means ask around, Google your professor, or go onto the Paradise Valley Community College website and search for your professor. It is helpful to know the teaching style of your professors, so you can better assess whether or not you will be successful in their classes. Every teacher and every student is different. Being human, each possesses a different set of beliefs, qualities, values and strengths. Sometimes the way a student learns is not compatible with the way a professor instructs, and that academic compatibility is necessary to a student’s success.

Stay Awake in Class — All students struggle with staying alert in class at some point in their academic careers. Being alert while the professor instructs is, in many classes, very important to a student’s success. The obvious way to stay awake is to go to bed early. However, this is college and students can be irresponsible adults, so going to bed early is off the table. Instead, bring water, gum or snacks to school.

If you feel yourself nodding off, begin to take small, periodic sips from your water bottle; this will give you something to do and hopefully keep you awake. The same goes for the gum and food. If you feel drowsy, take out your snack or gum and keep yourself busy. However, make sure your professor allows those items in the classroom. Also, if you are having trouble sleeping at night, try turning off your phone at least an hour before you go to bed. There has been some research done which has revealed that phones, lights and bright screens damage people’s sleep cycle.

All You Have To Do Is Ask — Asking for help is grossly underrated. In college it is critical to know when and how to ask for help. Do not be afraid to ask questions if you do not understand something. Make sure you know what the professor is talking about before moving forward because if something does not make sense in the beginning, nothing will make sense later on. Thankfully, PVCC has many, many resources available for students, so don’t be afraid to use them. The PVCC Learning Support Center offers tutoring, help with math homework and essays, and various other tools for struggling college students. There are also workshops available given throughout the year on various subjects. There are also tutors in the Q building willing to help students struggling through their math classes. All any student has to do is ask.

Google EverythingThe best advice anyone has ever given me is this: if you don’t understand it, Google it. Have you ever sat down to read a textbook and found yourself confused by what the text says? If this ever happens, pull out a smart-phone or computer and Google it. This will change life as you know it. Sometimes, Googling seems like such a chore because you have to take out your phone, unlock it, type in your search and skim through countless links. However, it pays off. Sure, it may take longer to get through the reading if you are stopping every several minutes, but the sensation you feel when you understand something from a college textbook makes it all worth it, and the few minutes spent going through the Google results is a small price to pay.

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