My name is Courtney Turner. I’m attending Northeast State Community College to become a teacher. Growing up, teachers were always my favorite people to be around. My fellow students would call me “the teacher’s pet” but I know I worked hard for every grade I received. I want to impact the next generation of kids the same way my teachers impacted mine. 

I was a victim of bullying growing up. It has permanently damaged me in ways I never realized until recently. Self-esteem is greatly affected by the opinion of other people. I am definitely not a social butterfly but I am kind to everyone I meet, at least I try to be. I have always valued quality over quantity which is why I only have one best friend. I also think it is difficult to have multiple friends while in college anyway.

Stress is something everyone, at some point, goes through. Stress is a result of expectancy. Standards that others put up for you and the morals you put up for yourself. When people expect things from us, we feel that we have to exceed their expectations of us. If we fail to do as expected, they are not only disappointed, but it can have long-term effects on the future. If you fail to turn in an essay or fail to block the quarterback from making the winning pass, these are things that affect not only how others view us, but how we view ourselves. That is why a lot of people don’t want to put themselves in a situation where they could fail. They feel they are not up for the challenge or that they cannot handle failure. Most people don’t handle failure well. 

The thing about stress is that it is necessary in order for us to better ourselves. We learn from our mistakes for survival. You want that promotion so you can buy your significant other an engagement ring; therefore, you will do anything for that promotion. You put yourself under stress so you can be prosperous later.

You have to learn how to control stress, not let it control you. Many people use religion to manage stress. They give their worries to a higher power. Others take matters into their own hands. Working out and running to let out frustration is something that many do. Therapy is a way to talk about things without consequences. Patient confidentiality assures these individuals that they are free to talk about whatever they want. Sometimes it’s easier to confide in a stranger because they don’t judge you the way friends and family can. 

You cannot let life beat you down. We brush stress off like it’s nothing. We try not to think of the side effects of this anxiety we put ourselves in. Weight gain/loss, hair loss, wrinkles, hives, insomnia, rapid heartbeat, headaches, and upset stomach are just a few ways stress can affect you. Mentally, it will consume you. People stress out about being stressed out. We don’t want all these side effects to sneak up. We want control.

Maybe modern-day America needs to take a break from the stress every once in a while. People need to realize that there’s more to life than that. Sure it is necessary for growth and development, but at some point, there’s a limit. No more. You don’t control me anymore. Or is that all wishful thinking? We are all slaves to this world; we are slaves to stress. Do people manage it, or are they just choosing to ignore it? Does it come back later to haunt them? If you have the secret to purge this monster, please share it with the rest of us. Maybe time is what we need. Stress is manageable with time. I am just too young to understand at this moment.