Students may overextend themselves because of pressure to be involved

Brandon Hosch is involved in several different activities. Hosch runs cross country, works for KWAR, participates in track and is an anchor on WTV. He also is a member of the Tower Agency and president of Public Relation Student Society of America — Submitted photos

Signs plaster the walls and bulletin boards on campus. Several of these signs are  trying to get students to join various activities.

At Wartburg, there are over 100 different activities including sports teams, clubs and music groups for students to join.

“I feel like there are so many programs to be involved in that it is kind of hard not to be involved in something,” Kellie Solberg said. “There are multiple people with lots of organizations that they are involved in.”

However, there is pressure on students to join as many of these different groups as they can.

“I think it is the students interpretation of expectations. That is going to come from messages from home, the parental environment, and again their own personal motivations,” Stephanie Newsom, director of counseling services, said.

Because of the pressures placed on them, whether by themselves or other factors, students overextend themselves. When students overextend themselves, they lose balance, Newsom said.

Newsom said other consequences of being over-involved include being stretched thin, stressed and having to sacrifice other things.

[pb_vidembed title=”WTV’s Brandon Hosch finds different methods to stay unstressed.” caption=”” url=”” type=”yt” w=”480″ h=”385″]

If students become overextended there are ways to fix it, Newsom said. Most of the things students are in they are in because they love it, Newsom said. This means they will feel guilty cutting any activity.

“It is hard for somebody who is a leader and likes to be a leader and likes to be involved it is very hard for them to remove themselves from an organization, whether it is an athletic team or an ensemble,” Newsom said.

“It can be very hard because of their own perfectionist tendencies of not wanting to be perceived as weak or less than or a quitter.”

Newsom said if it is necessary to cut some activities it might help to make a list.

“I would look first of all at what that student wants. We would look at pros and cons, what makes you happy and realistically how much can you manage,” Newsom said.

There are ways students can be heavily involved without overextending themselves. When joining a group, students should think about what role they want to have. They do not always have to be the leader, Newsom said.

Other times, students need to learn how to delegate, Newsom said.

“I just know my limits. You have to say no sometimes,” Sarah Kielly said.
The one thing students need to remember when being involved is that they do not need to sacrifice their own wellness, Newsom said.

“One of the tips I talk with students about is that you have to remember that you are here to be a student. We say student athlete for a reason. That student piece comes first, just like if you are in Student Senate,” Newsom said.

“You are a student first and sometimes that gets lost in the mix for students because they love whether it is track or football or choir and they have a passion for that so sometimes the academic piece gets lost.”


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