What is it?

Anxiety is a common feeling experienced by most individuals during their interaction with stressful events such as a final exam, class presentation, or first date. Anxiety is an intense, excessive, and persistent worry and/or fear about everyday situations. Both physical and cognitive symptoms are common when you experience anxiety.   

What Symptoms Might You Notice?

You may experience both physical symptoms such as increased heart rate, rapid breathing, and sweating as well as cognitive symptoms such as unhelpful thought patterns and concentration difficulties.

Other examples of anxiety symptoms are:

  • Nervousness
  • Sense of immediate danger 
  • Digestive concerns 
  • Weakness or tiredness
  • Frequent avoidance of stressful situations
  • Tightness in your body 
  • Difficulty managing the worry
  • Frequent headaches 
How Prevalent is Anxiety?

Anxiety was the top presenting concern (24.8%) experienced by college students seeking mental health services based on the Center for Collegiate Mental Health (CCMH) 2023 annual report. The CCMH 2023 annual report also pointed out that 65.5% of college students seeking mental health services presented anxiety as one of their presenting concerns.        

Things you can do to alleviate anxiety:

Strategies to address physical/bodily symptoms:

  • Relaxation or meditation (5 to 10 minutes daily)
  • Yoga 
  • Physical activities (20 to 30 minutes)
  • Nutrition/healthy foods 

Strategies to address cognitive/psychological symptoms:

  • Practice self-compassion: “With self-compassion, we give ourselves the same kindness and care we’d give to a good friend” by Dr. Kristin Neff  
  • Accept the power of vulnerability: “We dare to open the armor that protects us from feeling vulnerable, we open ourselves to the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives” by Dr. Brene Brown
  • Foster growth mindset: “The passion for stretching yourself and sticking to it, even (or especially) when it’s not going well, is the hallmark of the growth mindset. This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives” by Carol Dweck
  • Challenge unhelpful thought patterns: “To build self-esteem, you have to outface your negative beliefs about yourself and change them” by Asmaa Dokmak

Apps that help:


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Page last modified March 8, 2024