FROM THE ARCHIVES: Unique techniques dealing with common concerns

By SIERRA J. RUSSELL

 

 

As another semester begins, students are faced with an onslaught of challenging tasks and looming deadlines that can lead to overwhelming anxiety.

 

 

To help students with all that stress, Aztec Press has covered various techniques to combat fatigue and frustration over the years.

 

 

In an article from 1982, Cindy Arem, a counselor at Pima Community College, wrote about the six stages that often lead to “student burn-out syndrome.”

 

 

1)    High Excitement – motivation, energy and enthusiasm

 

2)    Energy Drain – constant challenges result in frustration, apathy or restlessness

 

3)    Energy Shortage – fatigue, stress that may result in insomnia, possibly seeking escape through drugs and/or alcohol

 

4)    Energy Depletion – constant exhaustion, frequent illnesses, irritability and depression

 

5)    Panic – feelings of inadequacy, self-doubt, severe test anxiety

 

6)    Disaster – cheating, failing, dropping out, deep depression and in severe cases, suicide

 

 

Arem reminded readers that although most problems seem complicated, they are often remedied with simple solutions.

 

 

She advised to be aware of time management and particular sources of stress, as well as maintain the basics of a healthy diet and consistent exercise.

 

 

“While drugs are often used to alleviate stress,” Arem said, “They may only be masking the underlying problems, resulting in aggravation of the stress.”

 

 

In a 1984 issue, contributing writer Linda Phillips focused on test anxiety. She noted that high levels of test anxiety are often linked to students’ inner dialogue as they imagine the consequences of failing.

 

 

“Worry is addictive,” Phillips said. “It is extremely hard to give up and it intensifies when not dealt with positively and overcome.”

 

 

An article from 1981 suggested a unique method of dealing with stress, a sensory deprivation tank. At the time, there were two flotation tank companies in Tucson, Samadhi and Oasis Tank Co.

 

 

Celebrities such as Lily Tomlin reportedly visited Samadhi, and Oasis Tank received guests ranging from musicians to circus jugglers who claimed the experience helped them with vision and coordination.

 

 

For anyone interested in trying this approach, Still Waters Massage, located at 3125 E. Kleindale Road, offers sessions for $65 for an hour. More information can be found at orangetucson.com/stillwaters/index.html or by calling 808-6916.

 

 

As for those who prefer the more conventional methods, heed the advice of PCC counselor James Yaple.

 

 

“Although there are many things around you, many events, many people, many situations that may prove to be demanding or trying to some extent, you have the control, the power to manage yourself in those situations,” he said.

 

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