UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | September 24, 2022

‘Decompress and Stress Less’ event available to prepare students for finals week

Photo courtesy of Jamy Dahle.

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There’s a weight on your shoulders. Crushing, overwhelming, somehow threatening to compress every fiber in your bones and muscles to the thickness of paper. This incredible heaviness is stress and it feels as though it will never go away. Alas, there is hope in the “Decompress and Stress Less” event.

The event is hosted and organized by Dixie State University’s Health and Counseling Center and provides an opportunity for students to participate in stress-relieving activities.

Jamy Dahle, therapist and outreach coordinator, said activities include: yoga, Jenga, corn hole, therapy dogs hosted by the library, a mindfulness station, free snow cones, and $1 rocks for students to paint.

Decompress and Stress Less is bigger this year because it has been very popular and participation has increased every semester the Health and Counseling Center has put on the event, Dahle said.

“We try to plan this event right before finals so students have the opportunity to release some of that stress,” said Dylan Matsumori,
Health and Counseling Center director . “Helping students to find opportunities to decompress or manage their stress a little bit more is what we’re really trying to do.”

Marcus Lindsey, a sophomore psychology major from Las Vegas, said the event is important for students because finals week is a time when they experience more stress not only in preparation for finals, but because students could be in a position of trying to raise a D to a C, or B to an A.

The end of the semester is also a time when students are trying to figure out where they are, where they are going and what they want to do, Lindsey said.

“[Decompress and Stress Less] is a good chance to just relax a little bit,” Lindsey said. “Everything kind of comes together at the end of the semester and sometimes it’s really too much for anyone to really focus on.”

Decompressing and eliminating stresses helps students be at a more moderate stress level, Dahle said. When students have too much stress or their stress levels are elevated, they become less productive and relieving that pressure causes students to be more productive, Dahle said.

Matsumori said students can destress at home by looking at how important the things they are freaking out about are, recognizing where those things fit in their lives and being prepared ahead of time so they aren’t overwhelmed with how under prepared they are.

“It’s really setting yourself up for success,” Matsumori said. “Go breathe, go relax, go chillax a little bit. Take an opportunity to just take a bite to eat before your test so you’re not starving during your test and also freaking out. Small things. Basics.”

Students can help spread the word about Decompress and Stress Less by sharing the Facebook page or by word of mouth. The event will be at the Jeffrey R. Holland Centennial Commons April 24 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“It’s a really chill, fun atmosphere to come and engage [with other students] and relax,” Dahle said.