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ZENSTUDIES : Making a healthy transition to higher education

Mental health in college-level education: providing teachers and mental health care professionals with tools to reduce dropout rates following the transition to college 



2.3 Resources and strategies for managing anxiety


2.3.3 Problem solving

Symptoms of anxiety and depression are often associated with unresolved problems. The following demonstrates steps for interpersonal problem-solving.


A- Define the problem:


Eight rules for defining a problem:


1. Start with something positive

2. Be specific

3. Describe what the other person said or did that caused you a problem.

4. Do not describe the problem in terms that are hurtful to the other person.

5. Express the emotions and feelings you feel when the other person says or does something.

6. Admit your contribution to the problem. Accept your share of responsibility.

7. Do not accuse or blame the other person.

8. Be brief.



B- Generate as many solutions as possible. Write them down as a list and don't limit yourself.


C- Evaluate each solution and choose the one you think is best. Remember that there is no such thing as a perfect solution. It is all about choosing the solution that allows you to make the best compromise between your needs and those of others.


D- Apply the solution you chose and see if it works. If it doesn't, start over and go through the steps again. 


We also recommend this grid from the website of the Centre de santé et de Consultation Psychologique of the University of Montreal.




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