Be Honest With Everyone For The Whole Day
A lot of times, the mental stress and strain we feel is from having to present this happy front to social media and our friends and family.
We feel like we need to have it all together and be strong for the people around us, but you would be surprised at how many people are also struggling.
Im not saying to tell the cashier your whole life store, but when they ask, how are you?, you really can respond with feeling a bit stressed, actually!.
It may start productive and comforting conversations, or youll just feel better for being honest and not having to have the extra stress of pretending not to be stressed.
Break Down The Homework
A big term paper or a science project can be overwhelming, particularly for teens who struggle with organization and attention. Work with your teen to break the project down into chunks. This will make the task more manageable. Keep a calendar or checklist with steps your child can check off. After each step is completed, celebrate the win. This will help your child feel less overwhelmed about whats next.
How Stress Affects Kids Who Learn And Think Differently
Kids who learn and think differently face all the typical stress factors other kids face. They have to deal with homework, social situations, and family issues. But they have additional difficulties that can add to their stress level.
At school: There are many factors that can trigger stress, depending on the child. Some examples are chaotic classrooms, unclear assignments, or fear of embarrassment. Kids who have trouble reading might panic when the teacher calls on students to read aloud. Kids who have trouble writing might feel stressed when they have to take notes.
At home: Kids who learn and think differently can struggle with changes in routine, like a parent going back to work, or when theres a lack of structure.
On the flip side, kids who struggle all day at school can feel overwhelmed by too many afterschool activities. Stress can pile up when kids come home and feel that their families expect too much from them. Or sometimes, kids who feel so much stress at school may come home and fall apart, because they feel comfortable letting it out at home.
Socially: Most kids just want to fit in. Thats easier said than done for kids who learn and think differently, or who struggle with social skills. They may feel different when they walk into the resource room or get extra time on a test. They may have a harder time finding someone to sit with at lunch or hang out with at recess.
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Whats Stressing Me Out
The first step in dealing with school stress is to work out whats causing it. This is easy if its caused by a one-off event like an exam or an interview, but its sometimes harder to put your finger on the exact cause, particularly as stress is often prompted by more than one thing. When were experiencing stress in one area of our life, it can make other, more minor pressures harder to deal with.
However, youll probably have a general sense of what its down to, such as “too much work” or “an unrealistic deadline”, and this is good enough to begin tackling it.
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Think About What Youve Been Doing That May Have Contributed To The Problem
Here are some questions to ask yourself when you find yourself saying my teenager hates school:
- Do I frequently nag my teen?
- Do I always talk about school-related topics?
- Do I talk as if my teens hobbies are a waste of time, or that theyre merely a distraction from her schoolwork?
- Do I compare my teen with her friends, cousins or siblings?
- Do I overemphasise the importance of performing well in school?
- Do I frequently force or coerce my teen into doing schoolwork?
- Do I sign my teen up for classes or programmes without first seeking her consent?
On their own, none of these behaviours will result in you having a disrespectful teenager who hates school.
But in combination, theyll likely cause a power struggle between you and your teen.
Over time, your teen may develop even more negative emotional associations with school.
What Can I Do If My Teenager Refuses To Go To School
Its tempting to scold and lecture your teenagers if they refuse to go to school.
But nagging your teens wont work. More often than not, it will exacerbate the problem.
The good news is that there are tactics you can use to deal with challenging teenagers. Read my top 10 tips for dealing with disrespectful teens here.
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Is Your College Student Stressed Out 20 Things They Can Do
Last school year, I polled a small group of college students about what made them feel the most stressed in college. Mostly juniors, their answers varied but were all specifically related to not having enough time to do everything required of them. Why did these students not elaborate with reports of disparaging feelings of overwhelm, doom, or stress? Did they know what stress looked like on themselves?
It turns out these kids are not only academically involved, but heavily socially involved through teams, Greek life, study groups, clubs, and volunteering. As if fifteen or eighteen credit hours are not enough, you would expect these college students to express feelings of overload and burnout, and to be concerned about their mental health and overall well-being, but a certain observation lead me to understand why these students did not allow stress to register as overwhelm or anxiety.
To them, stress was an integral part of their existence. It was analogous to being a college student. They accepted the possibility that stress was present and they tolerated its existence. They formed a vision of stress and all of its glory, and used this visual to help them regulate the negative impact of stress.
Even more remarkable? Not one of the ten students was willing to scale back on obligations despite sometimes feeling overwhelmed. They could not visualize their lives differently. They existed in this kind of whirlwind where stress became the energy behind the spin
Try Some Stereotypical Relaxation Activities
Lighting a candle, having a cup of tea, or taking a bubble bath may seem like cliched approaches to managing stress, but theres a reason why these activities are so popular. First, they engage your senses, potentially providing a potent distraction from your worries. Second, theyre just plain enjoyable, making them particularly pleasant ways to take a break.
A scented candle or essential-oil diffuser provides one sensory experience that you might enjoy. The warmth of a long soak in the tub can physically help to ease muscle tension or soreness that you may have accumulated due to stress. Simply taking some time to lay down and rest, away from schoolwork and electronics and perhaps with a good book or some music, can also be very relaxing and rejuvenating.
Other spa treatments are popular too, of course. Whether youre into face masks, foot soaks, saunas, or scrubs, these activities can be really enjoyable, and are especially fitting if, for example, youre experiencing skin problems due to stress. Knowing that youre taking care of your physical self in one particular way can help you to relax in other ways.
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How To Cope With Depression Or Anxiety
The best way to cope with depression or anxiety is to talk with someone else and, if you need it, get specialized help. We all have our off days , but persistent or severe anxiety or depression often require professional help. Still, there are things you can do on your own to cope better with school when youre dealing with these disorders.
Be Clear About What You Expect
Some parents ask their kids to just do your best. This can sound overwhelming teens may think youre asking them to give 100 percent effort in everything, all the time. Communicate what you actually expect, and be as specific as possible. For example, imagine you want your teen to start being more responsible. Will your teen know exactly what more responsible looks like, or is it too abstract? You will need to explain, in concrete terms, what youre looking for. You can start by praising your teen for the kinds of things you want to see more of. Its hard to cross the finish line if you dont know where it is!
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Be Careful In What We Praise And How We Convey Disappointment
Parents:Praising the right things can reduce stress for teens. A lot of parents say, Oh, just put in your best effort, thats whats important. But when we see the bad grade, our eyes convey something else even if a kid has put in the effort. Parents who praise the effort and the process and not the outcome reduce stress. If disappointment increases stress, do the opposite to reduce stress.
What are some examples of that?
Praise a teen for pushing through a class where they dont like the teacher. Or when they decide they dont want to take four advanced classes like their friends are which is unhealthy. Praise them when they cultivate hobbies that won’t show up on a college application. And finally, Damour says, we tend to praise inefficiency, for example, the student who does more than whats asked. Praise efficiency instead.
You know, I saw that you thought you had a pretty good sense of how you were going to do on that test and so you went online and found three sample tests and took them and you crushed them and so you did not study any further. That is some good work, she said.
Talk openly and often to your teen about the range of pathways after high school and that life is a zig-zag path where sometimes you fall off and sometimes you get back on.
Talk To Someone About It
If you are feeling anxious about going back to school it is important to speak to someone about it. Whether your fears are about classes, teachers or your classmates, talking to someone can help to give you perspective on the situation and find a solution where possible. If you are worried about bullying, make an appointment with the school counsellor or a teacher you trust before term starts so they can be aware of the issue and help to support you during the year.
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Take A Dog For A Walk
I say take a dog for a walk, because it can be yours or a dog you borrow from a friend, but theres nothing like the constant excitement and unconditional love of a dog that make them great pals when youre stressed.
This fulfills the advice to get out of the house and get some exercise, while also having a bit of a social connection .
Bonus points if you get some doggy cuddles later or go for a splash around in the puddles with them.
It can be one of the best things to do to relax and focus on someone elses needs rather than your own.
Differentiate Between Distress & Eustress
There are two forms of stress distress and eustress. The first refers to negative stress that causes mental and physical problems, while the second refers to positive stress that motivates you to improve your performance. So, if you realize that what youre experiencing is eustress, use it to your advantage to achieve your goals both inside and outside the classroom. As for distress, start by accepting that stress happens to everyone you are not the only person dealing with it. Stressing over your stress only aggravates the situation.
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Create A Good Study Environment
Creating a soothing environment can reduce stress and help you learn.
Consider what would make a good study environment for you. Each individual is different, so what works for someone else might be less than ideal for you.
Dont Assume That Your Teen Is Being Defiant Or Rebellious
As children enter the teenage years, they crave autonomy. Theyre also forming their identity, all while their bodies and brains are going through drastic changes.
As such, teens often exhibit rebellious behaviour.
But dont assume that this is the only reason your teen tells you she hates school.
Many times, there are other issues at play, e.g. feeling overwhelmed, struggling to keep up with schoolwork, bullying, fear of exams.
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Talk With A Trusted Instructor
When your friends ideas arent cutting it, its time to talk to a trusted instructor. They might have some tips you havent thought of yet. While your situation might be a little different, they probably know what youre going through because theyve seen it before. If they dont have any suggestions, they might be able to work with you on alternative exam times or help you with your school work. Dont expect a free pass, but they should be able to help you get everything done.
What Are The Symptoms
The main symptom of test anxiety is an accelerated heart rate. However, there are additional physical, emotional, and behavioral symptoms that can occur. For instance, students may feel light-headed, have digestive problems and sweat profusely. It’s also common to become angry and scared and feel disappointed in yourself. All these symptoms make it impossible to concentrate.
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A Bit Of Stress Can Be Motivating This Is Why Some People Work Well With A Deadline Or A Bit Of Positive Pressure But Severe Complex Or Chronic Stress Can Have Negative Impacts
Stress is part of your danger response, which was an evolutionary brain adaptation to help you stay safe. It can affect your academic performance in lots of ways, such as:
- Difficulties communicating – if you are very stressed, you might find it hard to understand what you are reading, or have trouble finding the words you need when writing or speaking.
- Trouble concentrating – if your brain thinks you are in danger, it can make you hyper vigilant , which means you are easily distracted. This is because your brain is constantly scanning your environment for threats. This means you might find it hard to focus.
- Feeling unmotivated – we respond to danger/stress through our fight/flight/freeze response, which means running away from danger, fighting it off, or even hiding and hoping it goes away. In everyday life, these responses can result in avoiding and procrastinating doing any work.
- Sleep and memory difficulties – sleep plays an important role in helping us remember things. If you are stressed, it can be hard to sleep , which can make it harder to remember things.
“Stress and anxiety at school can disengage your frontal lobe.”
How Can You Ease Back
Back-to-school anxiety is normal and understandable. Many kids may feel anxious about going back to school after a long summer break. Others may feel nervous about starting school for the first time.
Regardless of what the case may be, parents can help ease the transition back to school by being able to recognize the symptoms of stress and anxiety and implementing some creative strategies.
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Tips To Manage Everyday Stressors At School
To help your students deal with their day-to-day stress better, share these strategies with them:
1. Change your mindset
Instead of having a negative outlook on the tasks you need to do, consider them as opportunities to learn and improve. Yes, some tasks may be boring or overwhelming and were not asking you to play down the stressors you encounter. Its about changing your perception of difficult situations and focusing on the positives rather than on all the things that could go wrong.
By adopting a growth mindset, youll place a greater emphasis on becoming better and learning from mistakes, rather than being overcome by stress as you feel youll likely fail. For more tips, check out our blog about Challenging Unhelpful Beliefs.
Exercise is an effective way of reducing stress levels. Physical activity produces endorphins neurotransmitters that relieve pain and stress in the body. Research shows that exercise can counteract the negative effects of stress such as concentration and fatigue.
Aim to exercise between 30 minutes to 1h a couple of times a week. Not only will it benefit your overall physical health, but your mental health as well. And you dont need to run a 5K – even a walk is enough to make a difference.
3. Stop procrastinating4. Develop a sleep routine5. Communicate