By Seema, age 14, California
Tests, parents, and loads of homework. Does this sound familiar? It does to me. Every time before a big test I get bombarded with thoughts. What if I fail or don't finish in time? I pretty much go crazy the night before. On top of everything we have to deal with our parents, who want us to get straight A's and go to good colleges. This does not help, since it makes us feel we have to live up to a certain expectation. We all know school can be extremely stressful, but did you know all this stress could be bad for you? Stress can cause depression and other sicknesses. Stress can also make you age faster, which probably isn't such a problem now, but later it definitely will be.
I'm sure you are all wondering how to cope with this stress. After I study I always have to play my guitar. It really helps me relax and focus on something else. I've had friends who thought smoking might help them. They've developed an addiction to cigarettes which, trust me, does not help them. It just makes them more stressed out if they don't have enough cigarettes left. They get sick with headaches and nausea. What's more, it's proven that drugs, cigarettes, and alcohol actually increase your stress level.
The right ways to cope with stress are the following:
♥ Get enough sleep.
♥ Study smart. Create a good study environment. You can burn incense or play calming music.
♥ You can also do some breathing exercises.
♥ Exercise! Although you may think it will stress you out even more, it actually relieves your stress.
♥ I always go on a hike. Yes, it may sound strange, but I go on a five mile hike, which is extremely painful, but afterwards I feel great!
I found some simple exercises from www.coping.org to be especially helpful. Check it out!
I hope you all have a stress free school year!