Don’t Stress, Do Your Best, Forget the Rest!

Madalynn Duffy, Reporter

As high school students, we all know what stress is. High school students’ lives are crazy today!
No one should have to explain it to you in detail; we all know those feelings of anxiety and restlessness that are associated with stress. In today’s society,  stress is a big problem, not just for students but for adults and even children, as well. In a study by the American Pyschological Association, 47% of Americans say they are concerned with the amount of stress in their lives. Fortunately, stress is something that we have some control over.
High school students attend school for eight hours a day.  After school, there are extracurricular activities which can last from 1-3 hours and then 4-5 hours of homework; after they eat dinner, shower and have down time, it’s time for bed. Often, students do not get the recommended 8 hours of sleep at night after they finish all their activities.
In today’s society, kids are also expected to be the “best.” We are expected to have the best grades, to excel in sports, look pretty, be physically fit and on and on; it’s a list that never ends. Now, I’m not implying that high school students and kids should not be expected to have responsibilities or shouldn’t have homework. In fact, some stress can be positive and help motivate students. But, there comes a point when high school students have too much homework and too many extra activities.
In Mrs. Woj’s health class, we learned about total health. To achieve total health you need to be physically active in some way, to have a good social life, and to be mentally aware and stable. I honestly do not know how we all manage to juggle all of this.
Handling stress isn’t always easy. We handle stress very well in some situations, but get frustrated when our stress levels get too high in other situations. What many people need to know that it’s ok to ask for help. You are never alone; find a strong support system to help you manage your stress.
Here are some tips and tricks to help with stress:
• Breathe – before you start anything you should take some time and just breathe. Gather your thoughts and realize you have to take things one at a time.
• Think Positive – Remember that you can get through it and just keep on going.
• Practice Relaxation – Just relax. Take some time to  yourself and do things you enjoy once in a while.
• Redirect Energy – Take all that stress energy and put it in a workout or a personal hobby!
• Plan ahead – Make sure you have the time to meet your commitments and complete assigned tasks

In reality, stress is tough. We do not have the power to totally eliminate stress and all the stressors that we encounter. We can, however,  take steps to help prevent it and help reduce it. When it becomes too much, it’s ok to ask for help.