For an international student, life can be stressful as you try to balance work, personal life, social life, and financial stability all at once. For many of us, the pressure of assignments, the need to pick up an extra shift, daily commute, a sense of missing family members can all catch up at once – often causing a strain on our mental health. Watching your friends/family members caught up in the same vortex, you might feel that you have no one to turn to when it’s time to share each other’s mental problems.
Here are some simple steps that one could follow to prevent mental stress from flaring up.
- Unlearn: You need to give up the concept of success, wealth, happiness and struggle which you have learned from your friends and family. Your experience is your teacher. Once you stop living just to meet other people’s expectations, you will no longer worry. Unlearning is a long and gradual process, but you can definitely do it.
- Cook some Nepali food: Cook some food that reminds you of home. Let that nostalgia seep through your food. Cooking often relaxes people and if you are cooking food typical to your home country, it’ll definitely change your mood. Once you are done cooking, be proud of what you have laid on your plate.
- Talk to someone about how you’re feelings: They could be your friends, family, colleagues or even someone you meet in the train. Just unload your feelings and see how light you feel. Most people stress because they think their problems are unique and thus “others won’t understand”. But that’s not the point. The point is that you take the weight off your shoulders.
- Take some “me time”: Yes, working and earning are as vital as your studies, but these factors can’t exist without you. You have to be fit enough so as to fulfill your as well as your parents’ dreams. So treat yourself with some quality time or a healthy meal or day out in the park. Make sure you do what YOU like because this step is where you are taking care of yourself.
- What you’re doing is enough: Do not compare your success or failures with other people. You do you and that’s more than enough for your loved ones. Life is not a competition where you race for success. The stress you are going through for your friends and family is more than enough. Remember, they’ll be happy if you are happy.