Handling Stress in Your College Search

Searching for the perfect college takes time, energy, and a lot of patience. If you’re feeling stressed, here are some ways to reduce stress and channel it into something positive!

Steer clear of caffeine

Drinking more caffeine than you are used to affects your nervous system and increases your heart rate and blood pressure. Trade your coffee mug for a (reusable) water bottle to stay hydrated and productive.


When the college search starts to feel draining, get your body moving. Seems counterintuitive? As it turns out, exercise improves your cognitive function, including alertness and concentration. Countless studies reveal that exercise reduces stress.

Keep a diary

Write an entry each day expressing your feelings about the college search process. Reflect on the process and pinpoint your struggles. As the search process evolves, look back on your entries and see how you’ve overcome struggles and identify areas of the process that are beyond your control. 

Try relaxation techniques

Whether you’re painting a masterpiece or practicing yoga poses, set aside some time for an activity that relaxes you. Instead of watching Netflix in your bed, consider an interest that sparks your creativity.

Go to bed earlier

A consistent sleep schedule can improve your health, sharpen your memory, rejuvenate your attention span, and alleviate daily tension. It may even help reduce the anxiety of the college search process. 

Talk to someone

Plenty of people, including your friends, parents, teachers, and school counselor, care for you and want to see you succeed! They will be the first to tell you that worrying about your future is normal and encourage you to keep moving forward. Everyone’s journey looks different. It’s okay to stress during the college search, but trust that your hard work will lead you to where you are meant to be. Everything will be okay.