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Any time we go through an adjustment period, we may experience some anxiety as we cope with changes and the unknown of what the changes will bring. For some college students, this can be displayed in what is commonly called senioritis. College senioritis may present in several forms in students. Experiencing anxiety from impending changes can provoke the “fight-flight-freeze” response which is often the body’s natural response to external stressors. A student experiencing the “fight” response may be seen soaring through their last few college classes and eagerly anticipating graduation and future plans. A student experiencing the “flight” response may be seen avoiding the impending graduation such as missing classes, missing deadlines, and avoiding applying for jobs or graduate school. A student experiencing “freeze” may become so overwhelmed they stop studying, they stop attending classes and they may isolate from others. Often times, one may not know what their response will be until they are presented with the stressor. Being proactive is the best way to combat senioritis. Some examples of this would include staying ahead of tasks, not letting things build up on you, attending all classes early in the semester, use a planner to be organized and set small goals throughout the week to accomplish things on your to do list. It’s important to always take care of yourself, especially while going through an adjustment or anxiety period. Positive self-care includes getting plenty of sleep, eating healthy, exercising, doing something you enjoy often, getting outdoors and perhaps even going to counseling. Counseling is a great resource to help provide you with a place to process your anxiety as well as learn better coping skills to manage. Senioritis can often be triggered by the unknown of what is next. Counselors are often trained in career and life transition practices to help students navigate this period of their life. Never be afraid to reach out to others for help!


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