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How are you coping?

November 5, 2014

Coping 4

Many students find the transition from university to college challenging. With all of the readings, assignments and group projects that occur in condensed, applied programs, college can actually be more difficult. It’s very challenging to balance a personal life and work life while completing such demanding programs, but it’s important to try and do so. If we don’t, we will often turn to ways of coping that can be harmful to us in the long run.

For instance, drinking lots of coffee to stay awake/alert and reducing the amount of sleep we need does work, but only for a few days at the most. Some people try to use alcohol or drugs as a way to feel better and cope. We do these things because they give us fast results, but this is deceiving because they aren’t effective coping strategies in the long-run. Eventually, coping this way will cause us to run our bodies and minds down. We can even risk developing longer term problems such as substance abuse issues.

While it might seem counterproductive, sometimes it’s about squeezing things into our busy schedules that will actually help us be more efficient in the end. For example, by giving our bodies the rest they need, we can approach challenges with a fresh perspective. With a clear mind, we are often better able to tackle problems and in less time than when we’re running on empty.

Making healthier food choices and preparing our own meals can take more time than hitting a drive thru, but it also gives us food that provides us with energy and nutrition that will fuel us for much longer. Cooking food at home can also give us a much-needed distraction and break.

Sometimes, figuring out how to add more things into our lives when we feel like we don’t have enough time as it is, can be difficult. Talking with a counsellor about our time management skills and how to access support from the Academic Success Centre can help steer us in the right direction.