To be completely honest, college life can get you down. I am certainly not saying it will, but for some, the adjustment can be difficult. Personally, my freshman year has been a roller-coaster of nervousness and excitement, with a few upside-down twists. After little more than half of one semester, I can confirm what my parents and teachers warned me of: college is much more stressful than high school was.

This may be because I am responsible for my own education, or that the work is genuinely more abundant and difficult or even that my future actually depends on it. Failure is not recommended. Even though this experience can be one that paralyzes me with anxiety, I know I cannot get anything done without overcoming my inner stresses. I have found myself wasting countless hours of valuable study time frozen in thought.

I have come to the realization, however, that the way to win my bout with anxiousness is to simply get things done.

It seems like too simple of an answer, but honestly, it helps. For each task I accomplish, I have one less thing to worry about. I also have found that when I stay busy, I am not thinking about how nervous or stressed I actually am. There are also plenty of other ways to avoid the stress of college.

Last week, I found out that Gannon has started a dog therapy program. I cannot think of a better way to relieve yourself of stress. Dogs haveĀ  natural therapeutic qualities that may have been utilized by the very people on that history test you are stressing out about. On the first Wednesday of every month, you can check out the pups at the Recreation and Wellness Center.

I also find peace by listening to music and watching television. Believe it or not, these activities are relaxing and can help you to forget about your classes. Obviously, you should be careful to not let your favorite band or television show help you to procrastinate, which only causes more stress (trust me; I am the king of procrastination). But when you are studying, It is a good idea to give yourself occasional breaks so that you do not get burned out.

Sometimes, you may need to talk to somebody about the things that are bothering you. Maybe you have a close friend that would be more than willing to help you through a difficult time. If you would rather speak to someone confidentially, Gannon offers free counseling services. I have visited with them twice already and they have been extremely helpful. If you are experiencing stress, anxiety, depression or even the common cold, I highly recommend visiting the friendly staff at the health and counseling office.

This week has been stressful, but I have found a few ways to deal with it, and then it was now.