Panther Prints

Holly Jolly Stress

When the most ‘joyous’ time of year becomes the most stressful

Graphic by Mahi Patel

by Mahi Patel, Advertising Manager

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December is the month of festivities, family, friends and lots and lots of delicious food. Ironically, it is also the time of exams, gift shopping and dealing with annoying cousins. Holiday stress is the real winter storm, leading to tons of Grinchy attitudes everywhere. Forty-five percent of Americans would prefer to skip Christmas, according to a survey by Think Finance. A time that is supposed to be characterized by joy and compassion has somehow turned into a season filled with overwhelming stress.

For students, December marks the start of exam season, as well as the few weeks where teachers try to cram in as many tests and assignments as they can to meet the major grade quota. In a perfect world, students would have the second-to-last week of school free to  get a head start on their upcoming semester exams, which account for 20 percent of their semester grades. Unfortunately, this is the real world, and as much as teachers try to deny it, many of them procrastinate just as much as their students do when it comes to assigning and grading, forcing almost every one to try and squeeze another test or project into the final week. This tidal wave of assignments can be overwhelming to students and leaves them with little to no time to study for their actual exams, so they resort to cramming as much information as possible into their overworked brains the night before the exam.

Although there is not much that can be done about the abundance of tests and projects, just breathe, focus and find relief in the fact that the semester is almost over. Once it is over, there will be two weeks to relax, hang out with friends and enjoy the festivities of the beautiful winter season. However, the satisfaction of the finishing the semester  does not last long, as the second wave of holiday stress soon settles in.

Gift shopping, although fun when you’re on the receiving end, can be quite the financial and emotional burden. Trying to find the perfect gift is quite the challenge. The gift can’t be over the top, but a simple gift card just doesn’t cut it sometimes. Paying for the gift can be a headache. It is hard to find a gift that is personal, but also useful, but won’t break the bank. In fact, 69 percent of Americans feel stressed by a perceived lack of money and 51 percent are stressed by the pressure of giving gifts. Although the pressure can be quite a burden, relax and realize that the gift does not have to be perfect. You can’t  buy happiness with any item, no matter how expensive. Homemade gifts are more sentimental and are easier on the wallet. Just remember, it’s the thought that counts (and your presence is a gift in itself).

Although the holidays can be extremely taxing, at the end of the day, they are a time to spend with family and friends and make everlasting memories. If exam stress and gift shopping become too overwhelming, just look forward to all of the delicious food you will feast on and keep going. The semester is almost over, and the new year is approaching. End the year strong,

About the Writer
Mahi Patel, Advertising Manager

Mahi Patel is a senior who is in her second year on the Panther Prints and will serve as the advertising manager. Along with being in newspaper, she is...

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