12 December 2013
Keep Calm and Fight Stress!
Text: Yanghe Liu, Chinese
Translation: Yang Ting Leung, English
Some of you may have heard in the news that many university students are under stress due to adjustment issues. I conducted a psychological test on some friends who come from mainland China like me, and I found that we all suffer from various degrees of stress when living away from home. Some find great difficulty with their studies, some feel anxious about fitting in with the local culture, some may even feel socially challenged. But fear not, you are not alone in experiencing such difficulties. Almost everyone in modern society faces different kinds of stress, and there are many ways to relieve it. Here are some suggestions to help you fight stress.
Stressed university students
1. A Small Change of Mind; A Big Change in Attitude
A positive mind is what matters most. A pessimist sees a glass half empty, whereas an optimist sees a glass half full. We need to maintain positive thinking in the face of stress. It sounds like a cliché, but a shift in mindset will really change your outlook and perspective on things. Try to see things in a different light. For example, stress itself is not necessarily a bad thing, as scientists have suggested that stress may help improve memory.
Laugh out loud – your blood flow to your heart will increase, stimulating the release of serotonin, the happiness hormone. Whenever you feel tense or nervous, why not watch comedies or movies that make you laugh?
Tips：CityU’s library has a wonderful DVD collection in the Media Resource Collection area. You can borrow them for free, or better yet, if you enjoy the big screen, cinemas in Hong Kong generally offer discounts for morning screenings and on Tuesdays.
3. Turn your interests into stress relief
Music soothes a stressed heart. Not only does it serve to entertain, it can also lift your spirits. I like to steal time in my busy and hectic schedule to play some Bandari – “Childhood Memory”, “Annie’s Wonderland” or “Heaven Blue” – to recharge my jaded soul. Find your own favourite art form; it does not have to be music. Check out the Hong Kong Arts Festival for inspiration.
- A Quick Getaway
A short trip can help you to find peace of mind in nature. A quick getaway allows you to breathe again, literally. In our stressful lives we often forget to appreciate the sweet scent of fresh air. Go out and enjoy the natural scenery and greenery around Hong Kong. I have been to Sai Kung and the Country Park is simply breathtaking.
A Getaway to Sai Kung
Enjoy a day in the countryside with friends
When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, a kind of chemical that induces feelings of happiness. Do warm-up exercises first, such as walking, tai chi or yoga, to calm your mind. Then progress to more demanding exercises such as running and swimming, which will make you feel energised and stress free.
Tips：Tips: The sports centre at CityU provides facilities for a range of exercises, from badminton and ping pong to a gym. You can book online. The swimming pool is also open from April to November.
Basketball court at the Hu Fa Kuang Sports Centre
4. Stress-Free Nutritious Food
Have you ever binge-eaten during exam periods in an attempt to relieve stress? Although snacks may act as a great distraction when we are studying, we need to eat wisely to avoid gaining weight and feeling even more stressed.
- Eat fruit every day, especially bananas and pineapples. Bananas are probably one of the healthiest fruits, with the most beneficial nutrients. They contain potassium, which is good for regulating the motion of the heart muscles, stabilising your blood pressure. Bananas also contain a large amount of magnesium, which calms the nerves and recharges your energy. Pineapple contains vitamins A, B and C, which also help to relieve stress. You can use banana and pineapple as ingredients in an appetising salad.
Tips：Fruit is much cheaper in Nam Shan Estate than at the supermarket Taste.
- Nuts are also good for your body. Almonds contain vitamin B and antioxidants that can also boost your immune system. When you feel stressed, eat a moderate amount of almonds. They also contain monounsaturated fat and beneficial vitamins, and serve as a good substitute for other proteins. They relax the nerves and re-energise the brain, helping you to get rid of negative emotions. Pistachios can lower a fast heart rate when stress appears, and walnuts are also known to be good for relieving stress.
5. Good Time Management
Do you always stay up late writing essays and studying for your exams? Have you ever missed a night of sleep and fallen asleep during class the next morning? Or become so busy with assignments that you skipped meals? Sometimes stress can also stem from a disrupted body clock or a lack of sleep. Try to practice better time management and plan a healthy lifestyle with sufficient time for rest. Also, three balanced meals a day at regular times are necessary to provide your body with the energy it needs to stabilise your nervous system and calm your nerves.
6. You Are Not Alone
Talk to your friends; confide in your family members. Do not suppress your unhappiness for too long. Learn to trust people (that you can trust) and share your worries or stress. Alternatively, seek help from Student Development Services (SDS) at CityU and talk to our professional staff for psychological advice. You can be assured that their lips are sealed and that what you tell them will be kept confidential.
There are many ways to deal with stress. When I first came to Hong Kong I struggled too, but I did not give up. I actively sought ways that suited me to relieve stress, because a positive approach is definitely much better than a passive attitude. I sincerely hope that you are able to find some inspiration from this article. Do not fear stress; see it as a means of self-improvement, because your biggest enemy is not stress, it is fear. When in doubt, do not panic and never give up!Tweet
Childhood Memories Essay
1051 Words5 Pages
When I was a young child I would love to hear my parents tell me that we were going on a trip. I would be full of excitement, because I knew that we would be going to a place that I had never seen before. My parents, my brother, and I would pack our luggage and venture out in our small gray minivan. Three of my most cherished memories in our minivan are when we went to Disney World, the beach, and the mountains.
When I heard my parents talking about going to Disney World I was so excited. It was a long trip down to Florida and I could not sit still, because I was so excited. We finally arrived that evening and decided to stay in a hotel near the theme park. When it was time for bed I could not go to sleep for a long time, because I…show more content…
Going to the beach was nothing like going to the lake or swimming pool. The ocean had large waves that would come crashing into the beach. I was so small that the waves would just throw me around. I also got to walk down the beach and find different objects that the waves had washed up on shore. I found seashells that had brilliant colors like the rainbow. I even found a creature that looked like pink jelly. I picked the creature up with a stick and took it to show my dad. My dad told me that it was a jellyfish that could sting me, so he made me bury it in the sand. I saw another creature that was gliding in shallow water. It was dark brown with a long tail and looked like it had wings. It was a horrible looking creature that I had never seen before. My dad came down to the water to see what I was looking at. He told me that they were called skates, and they would not hurt me. That was the first time I saw something living in the ocean besides a fish. My dad then showed me that there were little creatures called, sand fiddlers, which would wash up when the waves crashed into the shore. We sat down on the sand so he could show me how to catch them. The sand fiddlers would dig down in the sand fast as lightning, so we had to dig for them fast as we could. When I caught one it felt like it was trying to dig into your hand with what seemed like a million legs. After about four hours I was exhausted and starving. I