As we approach the mid-point of the semester, your college students may express feeling increased stress. They may have exams and assignments due, and could be feeling overwhelmed.
Here are 6 practical tips to help support and encourage your student:
1 – Encourage your student to create a study schedule that includes backwards planning. Help them start from the due date of a project or exam, and break down all the steps needed to complete the task. Then your student can map out mini-due dates on each of steps. Ask them what they believe are their distractions such as their cell phone, friends, TV, e-games, etc. and how to avoid these distractions.
2- Ask your student about their ideal study spot and times. Some students enjoy getting up early to get their studying done, while other students thrive later in the day. Encourage them to pick a productive and calm study spot, but not one that’s too comfortable that they may take a nap. You might help them organize this spot with the supplies they may need to be productive, or ask them to consider going to the quiet study room in the Library if they need to eliminate all distractions.
3 – Talk about hydration and eating healthy. Drinking plenty of water and trying to eliminate drinks with sugar and caffeine is important. There are free water bottle refilling stations all around campus. We hear the “best tasting” water is from the fountain on the 3rd floor of the Student Union. Eating a variety of nutritious, whole foods provides long-lasting energy. Parents and family may consider sending a care package to residence hall/apartment students or stocking up on healthy snacks for local students. Consider making their favorite dinner or sending a gift card to a nutritious restaurant.
4 – Encourage your student to go to bed earlier. Focusing on an earlier bedtime and sticking to it for a week can create a healthy habit. Sleep helps with focus, concentration, and memory. Trying to turn off all electronics at least 30 minutes before bedtime. Writing down a list of to-do’s at bedtime can help their minds can be free from worry.
5 – Ask your student if they’ve visited the Student Recreation Center on campus. All types of fitness activities for a variety of levels are available for students to enjoy. The Rec Center is included with their student fees, all they have to do is show their Rebel Card. Recreation is a great way to relieve stress and meet friends. Even 30 minutes of walking around the track on the 4th floor can help students to better focus on their work. https://www.unlv.edu/campusrec
6 – Leave a voicemail or write a positive note. Remind your student that they belong in college, and you believe they can accomplish this milestone through hard work! Let them know you are always available to listen and help them find resources on campus. Positive self-talk can be an important tool in helping students overcome challenges, and hearing your encouragement is a wonderful voice in their heads!
Additional Campus Resources:
UNLV Student Health Center https://www.unlv.edu/studentwellness/health-center
Student Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS): https://www.unlv.edu/studentwellness/caps
Tutoring and Supplemental Instruction: https://www.unlv.edu/asc/tutoring
Academic Advising: https://www.unlv.edu/advising