The Importance of Effective Stress Management
January 2, 2014 Leave a comment
Stress is defined as a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances. Stress, in its most basic form, is the response to a demand placed on you. Activities you do, invoke stress in you. Stress need not be always of the bad kind. Stress can, and surely does helps the performance often. But the amount of the stress is the key here. A small amount of healthy stress is known to boost up the performance, but when the stress consumes a lot and becomes dominant, that’s when things start going south.
For you, i.e. the students, stress management is a very important task. You have to manage both time and the stress for the effective preparation and performance. If you follow clearly, stress and time are not two distinct variables in your case. Stress and time are co-dependent in your case. Like two sides of the same coin. Hence, time management and stress management need to in sync with each other all the time.
If you observe the matrix above, you shall observe that effective time management and effective stress management together translate into success and the lack of both results into failure. Failure in this case need not be absolute failure. It can be a situation where you miss your set goals by a long shot. Now for the other two situations,
- Lack of effective time management can lead to under achievement. It’s a state where you don’t rise up to your potential and settle for mediocrity. It happens because you couldn’t utilize and exploit your available resources and intelligence just because you did not manage your time at hand effectively.
- Lack of effective stress management will result in a burnout. It is a state when you undergo a lot of stress. This might get you closer to your goals, but there will surely be a performance gap. A burnout is a state where you will be fatigued all the day, you won’t enjoy studying and preparing, there will be a lack of optimism and confidence, and so on and so forth.
Let’s now discuss few simple stress management tips that will help you.
Yes. You read it right. Balance is the key. You have to balance all the things you do. You need to balance studies and preparation with rest and recreation. Remember that all work and no play make Jack a dull boy. Neglecting recreation and rest will result in you getting stressed out and obsessed over studies, which will hamper good performance. Take breaks, pursue a hobby in your free time, listen to some music, take a walk, do a thing which helps take your mind off. Again let me stress this enough that all these activities are to complement your studies, not to replace them.
Diet and Exercise
Sound body sound mind! Exercise or a physical activity is a must. It helps you stay fit, does wonders for your immune system, improves concentration and focus and alleviates stress. Play a sport of your choice for a short time, or take a walk or go jogging, the choice is yours. A proper diet complements exercise. Eat healthy stay fresh. Avoid junk food, avoid eating out, have home cooked meals regularly.
Sleep is one of the most important factors. You require 6-8 hours of daily sleep and you should follow it. Sleeping rejuvenates the body and the mind. Lack of proper amount of sleep can directly affect your concentration and energy levels. Especially not sleeping well before taking a test is catastrophic. Sleep debt contributes to a greater tendency to fall asleep during the daytime. Also sleep loss may result in irritability, impatience, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Too little sleep can also leave you too tired to do the things you like to do. Hence a good night’s sleep is more vital than you would think!
The word Communication, derived from Latin ‘commūnicāre’, means “to share”. Good communication can be a part of many solutions for you. Communicate with your peers about studies and preparation, with your parents about your goals and the progress, with your friends about other things. The first aid for any stress and anxiety related issues are “talking about it”. Take about your feelings, both good and bad, and let them out.
Also, keep an optimistic outlook. Do go through articles on studying techniques, jee preparation and time management techniques on this very blog, and elsewhere as well. Educate yourself in the truest sense, don’t neglect the other factors and aspects of studying as well.