Stress and anxiety are words included in the female vocabulary from a very young age. Being stressed out these days starts in third grade when you’re not invited to the cool girl’s birthday party or in sixth grade when you’re not wearing the right jeans or in eighth grade when you don’t make First Honors grades. In high school the pressure for perfectionism is increased ten-fold because now you’re supposed to balance your social life, extra-curricular activities, and your grades in addition to your family! Taking care of yourself starts to slip slowly through the cracks creating  a vicious cycle of opportunity for stress and anxiety disorders in collegiate women.
Recent studies discussed in the New York Times concluded that college students today are exponentially more stressed than college students less than twenty-five years ago. Additionally, researchers found that  female college students experience this heightened sense of anxiety more so than their male counterparts. 18% of males surveyed found themselves feeling frequently overwhelmed whereas 39% of female students expressed feeling frequently overwhelmed.  UCLA professor Linda Sax extrapolates on these statistics by underscoring guys tendency “to find more time for leisure and activities that relieve stress, like exercise and sports, while women tend to take on more responsibilities, like volunteer work and helping out with their family, that don’t relieve stress.”
The NYTimes article stated that “every year, women had a less positive view of their emotional health than men, and that gap has widened.” Perry C. Francis, coordinator for counseling services at Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, suggested that “guys might go out and do something destructive, or stupid, that might include property damage. Girls act out differently.” So, what can women do to improve their emotional, physical, and mental health? Northwestern University Researchers found that “students will tell you the truth if they are sad and depressed, they will tell you that. And, kids who are drinking too much or who are suicidal do go to the campus health centers.” This illuminates the first obvious tool for managing stress and anxiety, talk it out.
University of Illinois at Chicago (PDF) researchers outlined additional tools for managing stress, some are obvious while others are a lot more candid. For example: a well-balanced diet, 20 minutes of aerobic workout a day, being well organized, drink and do drugs less frequently or not at all,  human contact: hugs work wonders! Less conventional advice includes creative visualization and simulation. Promote success and calmness in your mind first. Whatever it is you have to do to help create a sense of ease for yourself DO IT! The key for strong women like you is to make time for yourself because your health is as important  as the care you give to the girls you mentor, the hard work you put into the grades you get, and anything else that might be weighing you down or holding you back.