Some may mistakenly believe that being a teenager is the most carefree period of one’s life. But sadly, it’s far from reality, as far as the 2013 survey from APA is concerned. The teenage years involve a lot of stressful matters, ranging from simple peer pressure to academics, to post-school issues, such as college.
In daily life, mind, and body closely work together so that both aspects can feel any stress. As the severity of the stress goes, it affects more of oneself, extending to emotions. Stress is a normal occurrence, but if one is exhibiting symptoms, such as anxiety/nervousness, low energy, procrastination, negative thoughts, abrupt changes in sleeping habits or eating habits, then it may be getting to be too much. Left unchecked, it may grow into a chronic problem and may lead to a weakened immune system, which paves the way for depression, obesity, and heart disease.
The unfortunate truth, however, is that no one regardless of age can avoid stress. Most times, it can feel overwhelming. If managed correctly, stress will not take a toll on one’s health. Knowing, and acting on the knowledge of how best to handle the stressful circus that is life, may give a positive outlook and better well-being.
Move Your Body!
A simple exercise, such as going out for a walk can be the most effective way to eliminate stress. “Exercise and physical activity keep your body fit, which in turns helps to keep your mind fit,” points out John M. Grohol, Psy.D. Find something that suits you, be it merely jogging, or yoga, or a sport, such as a basketball, skateboarding, etc. As aforementioned, body and mind always work together, and as so, exercise is good for managing stress. While at it, be sure to invite some friends along, or make new ones, if you don’t have existing ones. Such activities are better enjoyed with a friend or two; as one said, “no man is an island.”
You Need Sleep!
As a student, one may inevitably juggle between much difficult homework, possibly daily, depending on the teacher. Adding to that are academic and non-academic projects, hanging out with friends, and the list may vary in length. Ideally, nine hours is the most optimal amount of sleep a teen should get. However, according to a survey from the APA, the typical teenager only averages 7.4 per school night, which may be a key factor. This may be a problem, as sleep is crucial for both physical and emotional well-being. To this end, suggested measures include cuts to TV/gadget time, avoiding caffeine on late hours, and a decrease in stimulating activities near bedtime. “Managing stress and ensuring a routine of plentiful, high quality sleep are critical to protecting your health,” says Michael J Breus Ph.D.
Keep Yourself In Balance!
Undoubtedly, the school may be essential, as your folks may reiterate in myriad ways, but that shouldn’t be where all your energies are devoted. Do remember about your own needs too. In maintaining balance, Oscar Wilde must be taken heed, most notably on his most known quote: “Everything in moderation.” Take care of all those homework and projects, but be sure to enjoy yourself, and not sacrifice it just for an extra decimal point. “Attention to negative things equals negative emotions; Attention to positive things equals positive emotions,” shares Jennice Vilhauer Ph.D.
Aside from physical activities, relaxation can also come from things like painting, watching a film, or playing a video game. Keep in mind to do such things, despite a packed schedule. They can keep your edge, and avoid you from unconsciously dulling it in the stress of the academe.
Alongside that, do also partake in activities that cater to your talents and interests, like art lessons, conventions, baking classes, and whatnot. Volunteer work is also another right way of enriching yourself, like mentoring homeless kids, working at a charity store, among others. Developing your strengths can help keep stress in check.
As mentioned, no one has to deal with anything alone. Whether be it a parent, teacher, elder family member, or any trusted adult, you can approach them for help and advice. If anything, they can point you to a psychologist who can help with making healthy choices and managing stress.