Frequently Asked Questions About How To Fight Anxiety

With the adding responsibility of growing up and stress, anxiety can be common for a normal adult. In fact, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, roughly 40 million adults are suffering from Anxiety Disorder.

While you can sometimes control it, prevailing anxiety can lead to negative thinking and excessive worrying from time to time. It could affect everyday habits, work responsibilities, and productivity.

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Here are some simple steps in warding off anxiety:

Accept, Reframe and Relabel

Facing anxiety episodes can put you into thoughts that are too far from reality. 

The first concrete step in facing anxiety is acceptance. When fears become too difficult to control, accept that not every intrusive thought is true and something to worry about. Also, it will be good to use acceptance-based strategies such as identifying thoughts, labeling these, and being mindful of the moments when they appear and when they recede from your awareness.

Reframing and relabeling your anxieties is a better strategy than letting them control you. Instead of getting used to the episodes, try to reframe your thoughts more logically. Consider these intrusive thoughts are correct by facts or just a product of your fears.

Movement or Play as a Distraction

When you have an anxiety attack or feel one coming, you can try to distract yourself. You can stand up or move away from a stool where you are sitting. Doing something completely random and different can disrupt you from adding up to your already training thoughts.

Besides that, doing something that you like, such as playing online games, doing a hobby, or cooking new meals, can distract you from unpleasant thoughts.

Modify Your Diet

Sometimes an inappropriate diet can be rooted in a persisting anxiety episode.

Sweet foods and treats seem to be a go-to food to calm anxiety, but research shows that it does more harm than good to your condition. Eating too much sugar can worsen your anxiety. 

Similarly, while a staple during stressful times, too much caffeine can be bad when warding off anxiety. Drinking coffee can boost energy levels, but extra energy can induce an unpleasant anxiety attack.

Fighting off anxiety through diet does not mean you have to walk away from sweets and caffeine forever. You need to take these foods in moderation.

For instance, instead of having more than three cups of coffee a day, try to level it down to one or two standard cups. Instead, you can take warm tea, which has lower caffeine, as an alternative to your morning espresso.

Meditate or Work Out

Having a light and low-intensity workout is one of the better solutions to fight anxiety. Physical activity such as a workout may help in raising endorphins and serotonin levels in the brain. It can help in positively rephrasing your emotions.

Doing regular workouts can boost your self-esteem too. Becoming fit can result in more positive outlooks in life and a better overall feeling. That’s why going to the gym can be an excellent coping mechanism for anxiety.

If workouts are too much, see if a simple form of meditation can be great for you. Yoga is a meditation practice that combines different poses and controlled breathing to reduce stress and anxiety with simple routines and major mental health benefits. It is an excellent anti-anxiety measure that almost everyone can do. 

If you want to learn more about how to fight anxiety, this FAQ could be what you need to read today:

How can I stop anxiety fast?

Most of the time, fighting off anxiety can take time. But if experiencing anxiety attacks, consider taking an urgent measure. It may include deep breathing, closing eyes, and practicing mindfulness. Reframing thoughts and thinking of a happy place may also help for some. Keeping a lavender scent on hand can keep the body relaxed. Taking medications such as Benzodiazepines may be preferred when a looming anxiety attack becomes recognized.

What triggers anxiety?

Anxiety can trigger a lot of factors. One example is negative thinking and worrying about many things, which stem from fear of uncertain events or undesirable results. Selective memory and attention can also trigger anxiety.

Biased thinking can exert exaggerated thoughts and predictions about an event which may lead to anxiety. Avoiding causes of anxiety through not paying attention to the worries right away may tend to backfire in the long term, creating a cycle. 

Can anxiety be cured?

With enough patience in undergoing therapies, treatment, or medication, anxiety is manageable. Aside from that, doing simple activities such as lifestyle changes, engaging in regular and light workouts, eating smart can help avoid the worsening of anxiety in adults. You may also focus on the thoughts you get during an anxiety episode, relabeling them if they are still valid and factual. Aromatherapy is also a good way to alleviate anxiety symptoms.

What vitamins help with anxiety?

Taking vitamins in curbing your anxiety can also be helpful. It promises concrete results with fewer or minimal side effects. However, in taking one, it is still essential to coordinate with your family doctor or primary care physician to assess if these vitamins are suitable for your current situation. The following vitamins and supplements can be prescribed to you by your trusted Physician:

  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin B Complex
  • Magnesium
  • L-theanine
  • Multivitamins
  • Omega-3
  • Valerian Root
  • Chamomile
  • Lavender
  • Lemon Balm

Can you beat anxiety without medication?

While medication is helpful in anxiety disorders, there are plenty of ways a person can manage it without them. These include the following:

  • Controlling and changing diet
  • Eating right and not skipping meals
  • Opening up to a friend or family member
  • Recognizing and Relabeling thoughts in anxiety
  • Being mindful of the present
  • Practicing meditation techniques such as yoga
  • Engaging in a light physical activity
  • Moving and doing something as a form of distraction
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Does CBD help anxiety?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive compound that is present in the Cannabis sativa plant. Its potent pharmacological properties have been used widely in treating anxiety and a lot of other conditions. 

To be more specific, authors from a recent review found out that CBD can help treat some types of anxiety. It does so by interacting with receptors in the brain that regulate anxiety-related behaviors such as fear. CBD can be effective with the following Types of Anxiety:

  • generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • panic disorder (PD)
  • obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • social anxiety disorder (SAD)

What foods help with anxiety?

While caffeine and sugar are avoidable when suffering from anxiety, there are also a set of foods that may help manage this mental condition. They are the following:

  • Salmon
  • Chamomile
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Yogurt
  • Turkey, bananas, or oats
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Bell Pepper
  • Nuts like almond
  • Blueberries

What drinks calm anxiety?

Calming anxiety might involve therapy and habits, but a good and pleasant drink may also help. Instead of drinking your usual morning coffee, try some alternatives instead. The smart and preferred drinks that may help with your anxiety are the following:

  • Green tea or Matcha
  • Ginger brewed
  • Brewed maca
  • Magic mushrooms called Reishi mushrooms (powder mixed with water)
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic Drink
  • Turmeric tonic
  • Adaptogen-rich Ashwagandha

Does ibuprofen help with anxiety?

Recently, a study found out that Over the counter (OTC) Medications such as Ibuprofen and acetaminophen can help with emotional pain. Its standard doses can provide a numbing effect which can be beneficial in emotional and psychological pains.

Although before taking medications to treat anxiety, it is still better to talk about a Psychiatrist or a Local Primary Care Provider. There could be medicines that may aggravate your panic attacks, even more, so refrain from self-medication.

Conclusion

Anxiety is a personal problem, and it is essential to know what measures you can take to fight against your anxiety. Apart from the mentioned measures against anxiety, the people around you can also help you deal with it. You can start with sharing with a family member or a close friend about how you are currently feeling.

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Talking to a therapist can be helpful too. A licensed medical professional who knows the specifics of anxiety is always a good option in moving forward. When anxiety attacks become overwhelming, asking for professional help is an assuring choice to have. Licensed therapists and counselors can help you find effective therapies to curb your anxiety tendencies. 

At worst, you must urgently visit a psychiatrist or a medical professional to check for medications or any treatment that can help fight anxiety and its symptoms.

Anxiety is a severe mental health problem that needs urgent measures. While medications help brush off any intrusive thinking tendencies, there are plenty of ways to manage their anxiety. By simply changing sleep habits and lifestyle, a healthy mood change can prevent anxiety from coming back.

There are plenty of steps a person can use to defy mental health problems, but there is no single way to approach these. Choose and apply only those which benefit your present situation and are within your available resources.

Getting a healthcare professional’s opinion before having an uncontrollable anxiety attack can help prevent future mental and emotional aggravations from this mental condition. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Having A Master’s In Psychology

Some of the best universities in the world can be found here in the United States. Many people clamor to come to the country to attend one of them. For others, they use it as a stepping stone to living that American dream, find a job, and gain permanent residence. However, the truth about joining any University in the US is that not having a lot of money to back you up could make the situation challenging for you.

My Story

Hi, I am Lana. I come from a little town in Oregon. My father is a carpenter, while my mother is a seamstress.

Growing up, I did not know the concept of poverty, considering my dad was great at beautifying different house parts. My mother could produce beautiful curtains and covers out of any fabric. Because of that, I managed to live comfortably in our little home. Once I entered preschool, though, that’s when I realized the many people were richer than us.

I mean, some kids got dropped off in a Mercedes Benz car every morning. Other kids brought candies that I could only eat after trick or treating during Halloween. What about me, you might ask? My mother and I would ride the bus every day, and she would pack my lunch and snacks consisting mostly of vegetables cut out in cute shapes and leftover food from the previous night.

Don’t get me wrong – I am not ungrateful for what my parents had provided for me. I could imagine how hard it was to raise a kid with a minimum wage, but they did it so that I did not feel like anything was missing in my life. Even the toys I wanted, they would get it for me most of the time. Still, it was in preschool that I understood our social status.

I remembered seeing my dad come home from work looking dusty and grimy.

I blurted out, “Dad, don’t worry, I will study and work hard so that you can retire and travel the world without worrying about money.”

My father laughed, of course. He ruffled my hair and went on to their bedroom to change before dinner. Who would actually believe a four-year-old making such massive promises? Despite that, I meant to keep that promise because I knew that my parents deserved all the luxury in the world.

My Student Life

In school, whatever gadgets or material objects I lacked, I made up for it by acing all my classes. I was not doing it to show off or spite all the rich kids at school; I just felt a need to have the perfect grades to improve my chances of getting college scholarships. I knew that that was the only way for me to get an education after high school. Universities require families to cough up tens of thousands of dollars per semester, you see. My parents’ combined annual income would barely go past $60,000. I did not want to burden them or make them take out a loan for me; that’s why I started working hard for that early.

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I eventually got the scholarship I wanted from Yale University. Aside from the university’s scholarship, other organizations wanted to fund my education. The money I got from all of them was enough to cover my tuition and accommodation; whatever amount was lacking, I could make up for it by being a part-time barista.

My parents were overjoyed, of course. They said they always knew that I could make my dreams come true. Before I left, they insisted that I need not work for my additional expenses, that they could send it to me. But I told them to keep their money because their obligations with me already ended when I turned 18.

Four years quickly went by, and I got into the graduate program for psychology. It meant that I was on my way to get my master’s degree in psychology. All I could do until that point was worked part-time, but I was patient because I needed to get a doctoral, too.

Then, Mom called me one day and told me that my father needed surgery. Unfortunately, their savings were not enough for it. I made the executive decision not to pursue a Ph.D. anymore so that I could finally work full-time. Despite that, I had many questions regarding the jobs I could get with a master’s degree in psychology.

How much money can you make with a master’s degree in psychology? 

Based on studies, an individual’s average annual income with a master’s degree in psychology is approximately $60,000. The digits may go up or down, depending on their location and years of experience. Nevertheless, it is significantly lower than what someone with a doctoral degree in psychology may receive.

Can you be a psychologist with just a master’s degree? 

Technically, no, you cannot be a psychologist with just a master’s degree, considering that a job requires a professional to obtain a doctoral degree. Despite that, you may work in psychological research after completing your graduate program. Other jobs available for someone with a master’s degree in psychology include psych teacher, organizational consultant, data analyst, social worker, HR manager, etc.

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Is getting a masters in psychology worth it? 

Yes, of course, getting a master’s degree in psychology is worth it. After all, sticking to a bachelor’s degree will not help you to become a licensed psychologist. You need that master’s degree to enter a doctorate program before having a stable career in psychology.

Is Psychology hard to get a job? 

Yes, it is a challenging feat to get a job with a degree in psychology. That is especially true if you hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree, and hospitals and institutions only accept a doctorate. In that case, you may need to join the larger crowd and look for a job in other fields where your diploma may still be useful.

Is Psychology a useless degree? 

No, psychology is not a useless degree. It is the foundation of every mental health service known to man. Without this degree, there may be no psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, therapists, or even social workers who can effectively help their clients.

Is Psychology a job in demand? 

Psychology did not use to be an in-demand job. In truth, psychiatry and neurology were more sought after than that. However, as we see a rise in the number of people who become more conscious of their mental health than ever, psychology’s level of demand rises steadily. Research even suggests that between 2016 and 2026, psychology-related jobs may grow up to 14%.

Is Clinical Psychology a promising career? 

Yes, clinical psychology is an excellent career. When you become a clinical psychologist, people with mental health issues will flock down to your office every day. The more people you agree to help, the more fulfilled you may become.

Is a Master’s in Psychology hard? 

Yes, getting a master’s degree in psychology can be challenging. It is supposed to be like that, considering you want to obtain advanced knowledge in the field. However, if you genuinely love psychology and wish to apply for and receive a doctoral degree later, you should work hard to obtain a master’s degree.

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Which is better, clinical or counseling psychology? 

The answer honestly depends on the client’s mental health status. For instance, if the person cannot get over a cheating incident, has lost a loved one, or is dealing with a ton of stress, a counselor may help them. Although such issues are quite severe, they may not require the assistance of a licensed psychologist.

Meanwhile, if the person shows mental disorders symptoms, it is better to see a clinical psychologist before anyone else. The reason is that psychologists can assess their condition and provide a proper diagnosis. The psychologist can tell if the person should see a counselor, therapist, or psychiatrist from this information.

Is a clinical psychologist a therapist? 

The answer depends on the licenses that the clinical psychologist has decided to get over the years. After all, when the psychologist receives their doctoral degree, they can only diagnose and advise their clients. They are not supposed to offer therapy merely because of that.

Now, things will change if the clinical psychologist chooses to train to become a therapist. In that case, they need to go through a therapy program and complete specific hours of professional counseling experience before applying for licensure. Only once they fulfill all the requirements can clinical psychologists become therapists.

How do I become a clinical psychologist? 

If you want to become clinical psychology, you need to make peace because you will most likely spend a decade or more as a student. After all, a bachelor’s degree requires four years, a master’s degree needs two years, and a doctoral degree requires four more years. This duration may or may not even count the professional experience you must clock in before getting licensed.

Which country is best for clinical psychology? 

The United States is still the best country to practice clinical psychology. Based on studies, the current demand for clinical psychologists may grow exponentially in the immediate future. And if you decide to put up a clinic in expensive states like California, New York, Hawaii, and New Jersey, you may earn $100,000 annually, more or less.

What exactly does a clinical psychologist do? 

The primary role of a clinical psychologist is to understand how people are doing mentally. Are they thinking, feeling, or behaving as other normal individuals do? If not, does stress cause the change in their thoughts, feelings, or behavior, or is there an underlying mental disorder that has not been diagnosed yet?

Once the diagnosis has been made, the clinical psychologist may then offer counseling services. Meaning, the client will meet the mental health professional for at least an hour or two once or twice a month to talk about their issues and how they can reverse their way of thinking to get better. If counseling is not enough, the clinical psychologist may refer the client to a licensed therapist or psychiatrist.

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Why would you see a clinical psychologist?

The primary reason why you should see a clinical psychologist is that you realize you are behaving or thinking differently in the last few months. For instance, you may have become moody, gloomy, anxious, and paranoid, and you have never experienced any of those symptoms before. A clinical psychologist can then help you discover what causes them or how you can minimize them.

Similarly, it would help if you see a clinical psychologist at the first sign of mental trouble. That is especially necessary if you want to prevent getting diagnosed with a mental disorder later. By doing so, you can understand how to shield yourself from factors that may affect your cognitive function.

Final Thoughts

I was fortunate to become an HR manager at a multinational company. My job was to monitor the employees’ mental and behavioral health and handle possible disputes. It was not my dream job at all, but who was I to complain when I still got to use my knowledge in psychology?

Frequently Asked Questions About Psychology Jobs

It had only been several years since I graduated from high school, but I must admit that my entire senior year was nothing but a blur in my mind. While I knew that such a statement could make some people’s minds run wild and paint me as a typical teenager who partied their way through high school, the truth was not as colorful as that. I merely devoted most of my time learning psychology to figure out if that was the best program for me in college.

Some people raised their eyebrows back then at me, claiming that I should have had it easy. After all, my parents were both psychologists, though my mom focused on children, and my dad focused on everyone else. I grew up watching them help kids and adults understand what’s going on in their heads and how they could practically make their situation better. When I turned 16, I even started working as a part-time receptionist/secretary at their joint clinic.

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In reality, my parents never pushed me to follow in their footsteps or at least implied it, which other parents intended to do. Instead, they encouraged me to check out different programs that my chosen university offered to widen my horizons. Being the obedient kid I was, I did precisely as they advised. However, the second quarter of the school year was not even done before realizing that I was meant to become a psychologist like my mother and father.

Realities I Faced As A Psych Student

I always assumed that going to college as a psych student would help me get acquainted with the cool kids. Before I could even leave my dorm room (which I shared with three other girls) though, one of them asked, “Are you sure about that? There is still time for you to transfer into a different program. What about psychiatry?”

The first time I heard that I merely smiled, thinking that person was not #woke yet. But when more people asked questions along those lines, I honestly felt a little insecure and unsure of my decision. In my mind, I kept asking myself, “What if they were correct? I did not take up psychology for the money, but what if I would not get anything at all?”

Luckily, I did not give in to peer pressure and waited for a few more months to get a feel of everything. I saw the benefits of continuing on the same program and what doors it could open for me.

If you have questions about psychology jobs, I have answered some of them for you below.

Is Psychology a good career?

Yes, psychology is a good career. For one, when you become a psychologist, you can help as many people as you can reach as they explore their mental health. If someone has depression, anxiety, and other disorders, a clinical psychologist can guide them to deal with such issues appropriately. You may even choose to venture into therapy and treat your patients.

What are the highest paying jobs in psychology?

  • Industrial-organizational psychologists – Companies hire industrial-organizational psychologists to figure out how the employees behave and think and what regulations the administration can implement to improve their work performances. The mental health professional typically comes to the office to conduct a psychological evaluation and sometimes interviews them. Industrial-organizational psychologists may earn more than $100,000 per annum.
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  • Neuropsychologist – Neuropsychologists often stay behind the scenes, running cognitive tests and brain scans. Their job is to understand what makes a person’s brain different from others, especially when they think of something in a certain way. They get a little less than $100,000 per year.
  • Clinical psychologist – People consult clinical psychologists when they worry about having a mental disorder. To confirm or cancel the patients’ concerns, they perform several tests and diagnose them if need be. Their salary is based on professional experience, but they can also hit $100,000.

What are the best jobs in psychology?

The best job in psychology for introverts is that of a neuropsychologist. You may work at pharmaceuticals, colleges, and other institutions that study their neurological changes that individuals experience when taking drugs, dealing with stress, or getting diagnosed with a mental illness. The cherry on top is that neuropsychologists are among the highest-paid folks in the field.

In case you are a people-person, being an industrial-organizational psychologist may be the best job for you. You will be dealing with healthy people most of the time; you merely have to find out how their mental health is thriving in the workplace environment and what the company can do to boost their morale and performance.

But suppose you have no qualms about working with patients with more serious mental problems (e.g., addiction, substance abuse, major depression, social anxiety, etc.). In that case, it may be ideal for you to become a clinical psychologist. Sometimes, you may meet people who know there’s something wrong with them and want to correct it. Other times, you come across individuals who are still in denial. It is undoubtedly challenging, but you can get paid way more than others when you pick clinical psychology like neuropsychology.

Can psychologists be rich?

Psychologists cannot precisely be rich, considering the highest paid ones can barely make six digits every year. Still, it will be a different story if you turn into a psychologist for celebrities and public figures.

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Is Psychology hard to get a job?

It can be tough to get a job if you only have a bachelor’s degree since you technically have general knowledge about psychology at this point. You may have a better shot at finding a job once you earn a Master’s degree or Ph.D. And when you receive special training for a sub-branch of psychology (i.e., clinical, neurological, or industrial-organizational), you can establish yourself as an expert, and patients and companies will be clamoring for your services.

Is Psychology hard to study?

Yes, psychology is challenging to study because a person has never-ending mental processes, and you need to learn about all of them. As mentioned above, having a bachelor’s degree is not enough for you to be recognized in this field. You must study for years, get qualified for various practices, and even conduct a lot of research.

Is Psychology a useless degree?

Psychology is not a useless degree, especially when you seek further education after receiving your bachelor’s degree. Psychology is a hot topic in this century as more individuals talk about mental health openly and understand what they can do to protect or heal their minds. Without psychologists to consult, people with depression, anxiety, and other mild forms of mental disorder may go straight to mental institutions due to society’s lack of knowledge about their issues.

What do psychologists make annually?

A psychologist’s earnings typically depend on how many years they have been in the field or what type of psychology they focus on. For instance, if you are a clinical psychologist with less than five years of experience, you may only receive $50,000 annually. This amount may double when you reach the ten-year mark and beyond.

Which country is best for psychology jobs?

If you want to expand your professional horizon and earn as much as possible, you can go to New Zealand, Sweden, Finland, or Denmark. These countries have a high demand for clinical psychologists since the citizens value their mental health very well. In truth, when you go to the first-mentioned country with ten years of experience under your belt, you may earn more than $80,000 a year.

How long is a psychology degree?

When you get a psychology degree, you cannot just count the four or five years that it will take to complete your bachelor’s. Instead, you should add the number of years you’ll spend on getting master’s and doctorate degrees. Hence, you may have to allocate an entire decade or so to studying psychology.

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Who makes more, a psychologist or psychiatrist?

Hands down, a psychiatrist earns more than a psychologist. The reason is that psychiatrists are technically medical doctors who have gotten training in the mental health field. There are not many psychiatrists in one area, too, to ask for a higher professional fee. As of 2020, various media outlets declare that a psychiatrist can earn more than $216,000 annually. That’s double the amount that the highest-paid psychologists get.

Is Psychology a stressful career?

Yes, psychology is practically a stressful career. After all, when patients ask for mental help, you need to listen to their life stories, which may be sad and depressing. You cannot ask them to talk about something else – something fun – because they will not be in your office if they can do that independently. Nevertheless, once you learn how to set your emotions aside, it may be like any other job.

What are the top 5 careers?

These careers have been arranged randomly:

  • Psychologist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Nurse practitioner
  • Lawmaker
  • Software developer

What fields of psychology are in demand?

Clinical psychology is undoubtedly one of the most in-demand fields of psychology. We need clinical psychologists to diagnose addiction, depression, anxiety, and more serious mental disorders.

Neuropsychology and industrial-organizational psychology are also in-demand.

Final Thoughts

Do I still think that I made the right decision to become a psychologist like my parents? Yes, of course! I have always loved studying people’s reactions and moods, so it’s awesome to interpret them.

Mom and Dad could not be prouder of my chosen path, too, even though I focused on the more scientific psychology side, which was neuropsychology. They would visit me every month at the university where I became a researcher and professor; I would sometimes help with a few cases that required a neurological scan, too. Everything went well, to say the least.

Strategies On How To Overcome Mental Health Problems While Away From Family

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Believe it or not, 37.7% of college students who study abroad experience a mental health problem. Most of these because of three reasons – cultural adjustments, academic stress, and being away from family. Dealing with these things is burdensome for a teenager studying abroad. Good thing, several strategies will help overcome these mental health problems. Here are some of them. 

Preempt And Be Proactive

Before you start your school formally, you’ll most likely be required to attend an orientation. This short stint at the beginning of the semester will brief you on your college journey abroad. It will tackle your academic requirements, key expectations in living in the country, university briefing, etc. 

Given that you have an idea of what you will be facing in the coming months, this is the perfect time to prepare. Try to look for mental health resources that you can use based on the discussion during your orientation. Make sure to line up the best mental health support systems that you can engage with, should you need one. Some examples of these are group therapy, peer counseling, and telecounseling. 

Look For A Good Support Network

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Since you are away from your family,  surrounding yourself with good people can keep mental health issues at bay. Although having friends around cannot fully compensate for the warmth you feel with your family, having a good support network will help you cope with the sadness you are feeling. Aside from that, they can also guide you into adjusting to a new culture. 

Looking for the best group is not an uneasy task. Since college is a time of exploration, there is a tendency to meet a lot who are experimenting with illegal things. Be wary of this type of person, since they might only endanger you instead of help you. 

Always remember to find the best community that you feel comfortable with. Bank on the things you are interested in or look for a group of people in the same group as you. For instance, look for an organization composed of international students like you. Since they’re on the same footing as you, it will be easier for you to relate. They’ll know what you’re going through, and they’ll understand what you are feeling. 

At the same time, you may also join a group with the same hobby and passion. If you’re into arts or drama, then look for individuals who also love this field. Connecting with them will not only fuel your passion but will also distract you from feeling anxious and sad about being away from your family. 

Meditate

Meditation is one of the most effective ways of clearing your mind. Research shows that these kinds of exercises do not only improve your state of mind. Instead, it also gives you avenues to explore other perspectives in life and, eventually, change your outlook. It can also enhance your mental health and make you feel calm. 

Another good thing about meditation is that it promotes focus. College kids often find themselves surrounded by various commitments – friends, classes, organization works, etc. It makes it hard for them to focus. They get too consumed by the stress they feel from these activities and the endless distractions from social media that they tend to procrastinate. 

Meditation is an excellent strategy to combat all of these. Contrary to the common notion, this practice does not only revolve around stretching and yoga. Instead, there are also other kinds of meditation which involves listening to relevant audio, staying put, and more. 

Spend Time With Nature

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Research also has proven that spending time with nature reduces the possibility of having depression. A branch of therapy has evolved around this concept, which is called ecotherapy or green therapy. Experts revealed that a daily 30-minute walk around a green setting has a significant impact on our mental health. The color green relaxes our brain and takes away a little bit of stress from our surroundings.

An added benefit from this activity is its effect on physical wellbeing. It lowers your blood pressure, strengthens your heart, improves strength, and reduces body fat. Given that a healthy body translates to a healthy mind, you’ll most likely be mentally healthy if you have good physical wellbeing. This treatment also reduces your anxiety, stress, and depression. 

Improve Your Nutrition

Nutrition should not be a problem when you’re in the comforts of your own home. While your parents are most likely to control your diet at your house, it’s challenging to set up your daily menu when you’re living alone. But crafting your diet does not have to be overwhelming for you. 

The best way to go about this is to do the following: 

  • Drink vitamins every day
  • Avoid too oily and fatty food
  • Include oatmeal and green tea to your meal 
  • Eat frequent small-sized snacks instead of large meals
  • Manage the protein and carbohydrates that come with your meal
  • Incorporate fruits and vegetable to your diet at least once a day

If you find this task challenging, seek assistance. Your campus most likely has a health center that houses a nutritionist who can help with your diet. Seek for their help so you’ll know the basics of eating healthy. 

The Hardship Of Living Abroad

Being an exchange student in a foreign land is quite challenging. Add to this stress the difficulties in adjusting to a new culture and college life. Following the tips above may help you manage your mental health problems while in this phase. If you feel that you can’t handle it yourself anymore, seek the help of a therapist. They will be the ones who will help you overcome this roadblock.

 

How To Keep Homesickness At Bay When Studying Abroad Away From Your Family

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Being an exchange student and studying abroad is an exciting and once-in-a-lifetime experience. However, no matter how exciting it is, it is easy to fall into feeling homesick. Transitioning to a country thousand miles away from home and alone is never an easy thing to do. Especially if it’s your first time being away from your family, it can be not easy in the beginning.

How can you deal with being homesick and make the most out of your experience abroad?

What Is Homesickness?

Homesickness is the feeling of anxiety when you’re distant from familiar people and places. It is an overwhelming and nostalgic feeling that usually happens when you’re away for a time from a familiar environment.

It usually manifests in difficulty in falling asleep in your bed at night or a sudden melancholy burst. It doesn’t only happen when you’re in another country; it can also manifest even if you’re only a few miles away from home. This usually happens because you’re facing a change in your sense of identity and belongingness.

Stages Of Homesickness

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Although everyone has a different experience of homesickness, it usually happens in these phases:

1. Honeymoon Phase 

This is the time when you feel the most enthusiastic being in a new environment. You start exploring and learning new things. 

2. Shock Phase

This period is when you start feeling anxious and uncertain about being away from home. The physical and emotional symptoms of missing home may result in wanting to go back.

3. Recovery Phase

This is the time when you begin to feel comfortable and settled.

4. Independence Phase

Here, your excitement comes back as you gain new experiences and feel more familiar with your environment.

These phases may not happen in order or might change depending on your situation. It’s normal to undergo these phases as you transition to living abroad.

Ways Of Dealing With Homesickness

Homesickness usually does not require treatment as you can get through it as time passes. Here are some things that you can do to ease the feeling of loneliness: 

Plan A Routine

Planning a feasible routine that you can follow every day is an excellent start in distracting your mind. Having a clear goal to wake up to every morning can give you the energy to get through the day. It also eases the feeling of overwhelmedness and melancholy as you focus your mind on it.

You can start by setting a personal or academic goal that can give meaning to your everyday life. Schedule a day for decorating your room, going out, or even establishing a meal plan. These are realistic and achievable goals that you can accomplish.

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Participate In School Events

Once you start going to your new school or university, you’ll find many campus activities that you can join. These events allow you to meet new people and learn about the culture of the community. You can start by joining clubs to meet like-minded individuals you can hang out and be friends with.

Also, most schools offering exchange student programs have an international student society. You can share your experiences and create a reliable support system that can help you with your transition.

Bring A Piece Of Home With You

It is also essential to bring a piece of home with you when you move into your place. These things will make you feel that you feel still connected to your family and home. It could be anything—your family picture, your blanket, favorite pillow, your teddy bear, etc.

Moreover, try to make your room and your space as comfortable as possible. Make it feel like your home. You can try decorating it with things that will bring positive energy, such as putting plants and a wall of photos.

Go Out Often

Of course, you shouldn’t forget to explore your new environment. Go out and plan short trips and social activities. While doing your groceries, try to make some stops for other places around the town as well. Doing so will keep you occupied for some time, plus you can also meet new people while you’re going around the place.

Keep In Touch Back Home

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Keep in touch regularly with your family members and friends through chatting, texting, calling, and video calling applications. While you’re trying hard to transition, it’s not good to cut off your contact with them. More often than not, it will cause you to end up missing them more. However, too much of this can make you feel the distance and longingness even more.

As you begin to settle in, try to schedule a time when you will contact them. Try to keep your family updated as much as possible. As much as you’re missing them, they are also worried that you’re alone.

Ask For Help

“Homesickness is part of a process, and there are things we can do to move through that adjustment curve and feel more in control. If we keep doing things to explore that transition, we find our roots anew and get connected and committed to those things and feel at home,” author and psychologist  Tamar Chansky, Ph.D. says. 

If the overwhelming feeling is not getting better as time goes by, don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are guidance staff and counseling services for every school and university that can help you get through it. Rest assured that they can help you in dealing with your situation.

Conclusion

Studying abroad is an exciting and meaningful experience. Your time abroad is a time where you can truly find yourself and the things you enjoy, and you’re good at it. However, if you’re struggling, don’t think of it as the end of it all. Don’t feel ashamed to ask for support and help as you make your transition. By doing so, you’re one step closer to making the most out of your life abroad.

 

 

Rethinking Accepting Exchange Student Program Amid Pandemic

Becoming an exchange student has been one of my dreams for as long as I can remember. My older sister has done it; she stayed at the University of Cambridge for six months and told me how much fun she had. That made me realize that it was possible to fulfill my dream, so I studied a lot in hopes of getting into an exchange student program someday.

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When I received a letter from the same university last year, my heart started pounding like crazy. I applied to be a visiting student a year before that, so I thought that I would never get picked. But I reread the letter a gazillion times, and it said the same thing: I. Got. In.

My entire family was excited about this news. My sister called her old landlady at once and asked for an available room during spring, which was when I was supposed to go to the UK. Mom started looking for plane tickets, saying that it would be more affordable that way. On my part, I took more shifts at my part-time job and compiled all my requirements so that everything would be set when spring comes.

Unfortunately, the coronavirus came earlier than my travel date. The university offered to accommodate me during the fall season, which I am glad about. But my parents are not so on board anymore because:

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Traveling May Be Unsafe

Since being an exchange student typically means going to a different school that’s hundreds or thousands of miles away from home, traveling is inevitable. You will need to ride a plane more often than not to reach your destination. If the new school is in the same country, you may be able to go by land.

Although traveling is exciting under normal circumstances, it is a little scary now that there is still a pandemic. After all, prominent universities mostly offer an exchange student program, and they are situated in densely populated cities. Unless you can travel at the speed of light, you will eventually have to go through checkpoints or immigrations and interact with people.

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You Can’t Avoid Talking To Strangers A Lot

Considering you have never visited the city where the new university is, you may have no choice but to talk to strangers. It seems impossible for you to know which direction to go or where to find an establishment or office without asking someone for help. The latter is technically better than getting lost in a foreign place.

Despite the practicality of chatting with strangers when you don’t know a place, you must admit that the coronavirus outbreak makes it impractical. That is especially true if you and the stranger need to lean in to hear each other or discuss the map or instructions that you’re trying to follow. If you end up asking a helpful yet asymptomatic person, you may test positive for COVID-19.

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There Is No Vaccine For COVID-19 Yet

One reason why some people insist on traveling or going out is that they cannot fathom the severity of catching the coronavirus. In a little UK town where my aunt lives, for instance, most folks do not bother wearing a mask. If they see you with one, they may give you a weird look.

Even if you agree with those people, you don’t want to experience COVID-19 first-hand. Aside from its deadliness, there is no vaccine for it at the time of writing. You are lucky to be asymptomatic or deal with mild symptoms, but the virus may overpower your immune system, and your life will be hanging by a thread.

Final Thoughts

Getting invited for an exchange student program is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that no one should ever pass up. However, since the coronavirus is still lurking out there, you need to rethink your decision to move out of the house, albeit temporarily.

Good luck!

Digital Identity and Winning Customer Trust

 

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The 2019 Identity Conference gathered together intellectual leaders from various disciplines to discuss best practices for digital identities. Renowned speakers, networking opportunities, and hands-on presentations and demos were some of the features of the must-attend event. The venue was also filled with many entrepreneurs looking to push profitable growth via digital networks. There were discussions about outcomes from research on digital identity, including how to improve its strategies and policies, how to strengthen data security and privacy, and how to win customer trust. Some tips about the latter are discussed below.

Importance Of Digital Identity Management

The era that we live in today values data so much, although we know that if something has value, this something also has its risks. For example, the fact that 60% of companies don’t succeed once it has been cyber-attacked within six months from its launch. Hackers, user errors, malicious software, and online malpractices all affect digital identification data that providers gather or store. For a business that gathers or stores client information, security is crucial to winning and keeping customer trust.

To win customer trust:

Provide Limitations To Acquiring Data.

Data is not in use constantly, which is why everyone must not access sensitive customer data – at least not all the time. Providing field-level encryption enables you to create access based on a specific person’s role, which means that this encryption has the capacity of encrypting data within specific data fields. This makes data unreadable to those who lack access or the codes to decrypt the particular data.

Collect Only What Is Necessary.

A lot of businesses quickly collect various customer data even while still on the registration process. As a provider, you should take time to think about how and why you will use this data – or find out the right time to gather this data so that you won’t have problems. Gathering unnecessary information is a waste of resources, plus it increases the likelihood of identity theft. Also, collecting too much information leads to customer abandoning their registration, as this slackens the process and also feels intrusive.

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Have A Need For Safer Authentication.

There are already plenty of tech-savvy users nowadays looking for personal information, most of them unaware of this affects security. To lessen the risk, it is vital to invest in setups that allow a higher level of protection, like a more demanding standard in password creation. Multifactor authentication is one of these systems that utilizes a call-in code or SMS as an extra precaution.

Show Respect To Your Customers.

Before, digital identity management practices were less respectful of client privacy. However, it is different now, as clients have become aware of their rights and their demands have increased; hence, the emergence of compliance regulations. Compliance regulations necessitate a business to keep in touch with their customers as to why their data is gathered, who gathers it, and what it is for. These regulations also demand consent before collecting their information.

Hashing And Data Encryption Must Be An Investment.

When data is traveling from one server to the other, it is where this data is most susceptible to theft. For this reason, you must protect your clients by encrypting this data while it is in transit for utmost client protection. Similarly, encryption, while data is at rest, is required for compliance issues and data governance. But if we talk about hackers, we know that they can decode anything that has a code, which is why one-way hashing for preventing this from happening should be done. An important tip when administering encryption both in transit and at rest is to be sure that you are utilizing a system with an ISO 27001 certificate to guarantee that your system is compliant with the standard guidelines for risk management and data security.

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As a bonus, here are two common misconceptions around digital identity management.

You just gather customer ideas from forms and surveys.

Yes, this may be true. Having your customers fill out surveys has been one of the most common ways to get their insights on something. Another means is using an ID to determine customer behavior. However, we must also think about those customers who have multiple gadgets, those who access the web using many IP addresses, or those who have separate digital identification cards at home and work. For this, you will need to collect all data and store them in one place. But just how will you do that?

This can be done by using a CIAM, or a Customer Identity And Access Management software. Through this software, you can acquire substantial information from multiple sources. Even if you use anonymous user data, you can still make a customer identity. You can also collect data through progressive profiling, wherein customers naturally share their personal information.

You only need consumer behavior analytics.

Because of the marketing sector’s dependence on user experience mapping, content engagement, and session analytics, this belief is widespread. As a result, a lot of businesses wrongly think that behavioral data is the only thing they need for them to succeed in digital identity management, which is so not true.

 

 

 

 

How Has Technology Changed The Nature Of Work?

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The beautiful St. Louis, Missouri was host to the 2019 International Convention Last March. Much of the city’s history, art, and culture were presented to the participants to showcase the city’s pride. St. Louis is home to several reputable writers, including Maya Angelou, Marianne Moore, and Mark Twain. Additionally, the convention displayed the many works of progress in the city, particularly the railroads and other well-known infrastructures. Manual work – through the use of one’s hands and his brains – was also celebrated during the event. To further highlight this, questions were posed on how people do work nowadays, with the advent of digital technology. Has work become faster yet compromising quality? Have working conditions and relationships changed? How has technology changed the way people work and the nature of work itself?

Team Work Is Easier

Online communication devices have allowed employees to work closely even without staying in the same place. Through video conferences and group chats, a collaboration of ideas and insights is made possible. Work progress can also be easily monitored by using software tools to track conversations between employees and customers as well.

Work Is More Productive

Employees today have the opportunity to get more work done through the help of digital tools in the field of communication, business, and manufacturing, among others. It used to take hours just making reports and inventories, but now with the help of technology, these things get done within minutes. Payments, propositions, and other paperwork get quickly transmitted to clients all over the world.

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A Change In Office Culture

Because a lot of people can choose to work in their homes or wherever they feel comfortable staying, employers are always finding ways to persuade workers to work in their offices, thus, offering them incentives and other add-ons that would not have been provided before when working remotely was impossible. Now, employers need to work, too, to keep their employees drawn to their offices. In many countries, people can go to workspaces or hubs that they can rent so they can work from there rather than report to their office.

 

 

 

 

 

Helpful Thoughts While Quarantined Abroad

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Whenever I log into my Facebook or Twitter account these days, I see people post things about boredom during the quarantine. Mind you; these individuals are staying in their houses with their loved ones. And they cannot seem to stand the idea of staying in a comfortable space (that they own) for many weeks.

This mentality cannot be a product of white privilege or first-world problems. Many folks in third-world countries complain about the lockdown, to the extent that they get caught while disobeying the rules. The typical reasons that every complainant voices out are:

  • We want to work again.
  • The pandemic is nothing but a scam.
  • We know the people in our neighborhood, so we are safe.
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Without sounding like I am devaluing such feelings, I believe complaining about the at-home quarantine is too much. If there is anyone who should be doing that, it’s the individuals who cannot leave the countries on lockdown as we speak. Now, they are all alone abroad, and it may take a while before they can see their families again.

Still, in case you indeed find yourself in the latter situation, please avoid posting depressive messages on social media. It will neither end the pandemic nor speed up your return to your motherland. All it can do is fill your mind with negativity and make you more miserable than you should be.

These are some helpful ideas that you need to toy with instead:

It Is Safer To Stay Put Than To Try Leaving The Country

Have you been contacting every airline that can take you back to your country? Well, that is not a smart move. Plenty of COVID-19 patients are asymptomatic, which means that the airline cannot prevent them from riding the plane and infecting the other passengers. You may also come in close contact with them on the way to the airport. Even if you manage to go home, you may end up spreading the virus that you are running away from.

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To keep everyone safe, it is best to stay put and wait for the lockdown to ease or get lifted. Doing so reduces your probability of catching the coronavirus.

The Lockdown Will Not Be There For Eternity

Because of the rising number of positive COVID-19 cases, it seems challenging to think that the prevailing lockdown will be gone shortly. The fact that more and more people are coming out of their houses to protest may increase the virus transmissions, too.

Despite that, you should believe that this lockdown cannot go on for eternity. It will bring a lot of nations down since it paralyzes the economy. The leaders are doing everything they can to end the pandemic sooner than later, so don’t lose hope.

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Money Is Not A Real Problem At This Point

Are you frustrated about getting quarantined abroad because you are already running out of money? You can ask your family and friends to wire transfer some cash to you. In case your credit or debit card does not work in the country where you are staying, look for a Western Union branch or any other remittance center.

When the lockdown is over, you can return home and pay back your loved ones. You need to stop worrying about money for a while, especially when your health should be your top priority.

Final Thoughts

You want to be with your family right now—I get that. You wish that you are at work—I understand that, too. However, it will not do you any good if you keep on complaining about not being able to do either of them. Not only will your loved ones worry about you, but you will also be restless. Just stay where you are, listen to the latest news updates, and pray that this pandemic will soon be history.

Benefits Of Green Technologies

 

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There was a mix of professional attendees from principals, faculty directors, teachers, architects, engineers, energy managers, and waste management experts at the 2018 International School Summit. People anticipate the event every year, as it is an opportunity for almost all sectors to meet, exchange each of their best practices, and learn new ideas and technologies for a greener school and community environment. The importance, as well as the benefits of green technology, were also emphasized.

It is true that by adding sustainable qualities into a school building, an office, or a home, one can decrease its environmental impact, create value that lasts, and save money in the long run. Green technology can undoubtedly improve any building, whether small or big, or whatever it is built for.

Benefits Of Green Technologies

Tax Credits. The government provides tax credits for those who decide to build residential and commercial green buildings. Homeowners can claim as much as 30% of their expenses in building buildings with eco-friendly technologies like photovoltaic cells, wind systems, and solar heaters. If the cost of your house is $1000, you get a 30% discount, while if you spent $2000, you’d just pay half the price.

Savings. It is a fact that green technologies often cost higher than ordinary homes or buildings, but in the long run, the savings will be significant. This is because these green technologies are made in a way that they save power and electricity. With green buildings, you can save in utility bills. Electricity through geothermal plants saves as much as 50% compared to the standardized systems. On the other hand, if you use wind systems, you can up to 90%!

Small wind turbine at Otterswick

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Environmental Impact. One of the most vital benefits of green technology is its positive effect on the environment. Going green helps decrease emissions, reduces waste, helps conserve water, and takes up less energy compared to conventional systems. There is also a more efficient usage of materials. One solar heater can keep more than 50 tons of CO2 emission from getting out of the earth’s atmosphere.