Beginner’s Guide to Stress Management

By Elena

Although stress is a normal part of our lives, too much stress it’s good for you. As a student who’s always pushing herself to be better, I’ve found this is something I often struggle with managing my stress, as do many of my classmates.

That’s why I’ve decided to put together this guide to managing stress, especially in high school when you’re trying to build up your resume for colleges and trying to get through difficult classes.

Image: Pixabay

Find Balance

To prevent stress before it even starts, you should find a balance within your scheduling to keep yourself from doing everything at once. I know this can be hard, especially if you’re trying to do everything, but you will burn yourself out if you’re constantly doing everything.

Try as hard as you can not to overschedule yourself. You aren’t doing yourself any favors by pushing yourself to the point of exhaustion, and you’re only hurting yourself if you’re constantly overscheduling. 

If you know you’re going to have a stressful month or two coming up, make sure you balance it out by having a freer month or two following, to give you a chance to recover and find a balance so you don’t burn out.

This is something I’ve overall struggled a lot with, however Corona Quarantine has taught me a lot about the benefits of taking a break once in a while and giving yourself time to recover, especially when you always push yourself to be the best you possibly can be.

Knowing When to Take a Break

A very important aspect of managing stress is when to take moments for yourself and to take a break from whatever you’re doing. Your life shouldn’t be focused on constantly going and going, or else you’re going to get yourself to a point where you can’t properly function and you break down.

If you do get to the point of breakdowns, then you definitely need to take a break. The breaks don’t need to be long, just long enough for you to check back in with yourself and know what you should maybe focus a little bit less on.

You can’t expect yourself to do everything all the time, and that means sometimes, a few things might have to get thrown on the backburner, and that’s completely normal and ok.

Sleep

Although this can be hard, especially as an overachieving teen, it’s something very important to keep up. You need to have a good sleep schedule, or else you won’t have enough energy to keep going.

You can’t live on a schedule where you’re constantly working, and only get 4 hours of sleep a night. It isn’t sustainable, and only makes you more stressed out.

Moreover, skipping out on sleep is really unhealthy, and if you keep this habit up, you could easily end up in a hospital bed due to lack of sleep.

Diet

Make sure you’re eating well. You don’t have to always be eating healthy, but especially when you’re very stressed, make time to make a nutritious meal. If you don’t have a good diet, you’re going to bring yourself to more stress because you’re not getting all the nutrients you need to be healthy.

Stay tuned for some article on our diets and how we maintain a balanced diet as vegetarians, even during the busiest times of our lives.

Meditation

Something many people find to help with stress is meditation. It helps clear your mind, and doesn’t need to take that much time. Although I don’t meditate, I know it helps a lot of people.

There’s a plethora of different kinds of meditation, and if you think meditation is something you want to try out, do a little bit of research or reach out to us via social media, email, the comment’s section, or submit a form on the contact page and we’ll help you out!

Talking to a Friend

Talking to a friend is an easy way to help you manage stress. Oftentimes, they might also be stressed, so it helps you both to be able to rant out your feelings to one another, and also give each other advice on what to do. Your friends are there to help support you, as you are there to help support them as well.

Stress Journaling

Another easy way to manage stress is writing down what’s stressing you out. This can be especially good if you don’t have a friend you feel comfortable ranting to, or if you just want to keep your stress private. It’s good to get it off your chest, even if it’s just onto paper.

Often, knowing what’s stressing you out can help you know what actions you need to take to mitigate your stress, and it’s also very therapeutic. 

Stress Journaling can be done in a variety of ways, for example you could either have a special journal to write down your stressors, or if you have a diary, perhaps you could write stressors in there.

What I do is when there’s something that’s really stressing me out that I want to write about, I open up my notes app on my phone and write out all my problems in a long paragraph. Some of my friends use private stories on Snapchat or their Finsta pages to write out their worries.

There’s plenty of ways to stress journal, and you can find what’s right for you, whether it’s using notes to write a paragraph, or even a poem, or using a private story to write out all your problems. This is something I would definitely recommend, as I have found it to help tremendously.

Talk to a Pet

Now, I know this sounds really stupid, but it really does work. A lot of the times, you just need to get your stress out there, but if you don’t want to tell a friend or a family member, your pet is there for you.

Most of the time, just talking through your problems, whether it’s alone or with someone else, can really help, and if you don’t want to tell anyone or seem like a crazy person talking to yourself, your pet is more than willing to lend a floppy ear.

My dog has helped me through so many problems by just being something soft and fluffy to cuddle, and he’s always willing to let me cry and rant into his fur. Of course, he’s an attention-loving golden retriever, and even if he doesn’t ask for it, he’s always craving any sort of attention he can get.

Breathe

If all of these options aren’t something available in the moment, I’ve found that just focusing on my breathing is so beneficial. What I usually think about is as I breathe in, I’m breathing in oxygen, and as I breathe out, I breathe out my stress.

Just focus on breathing in and breathing out. Focusing on something so minuscule helps take your mind off of everything else happening in your life, you just have to put all of your attention into breathing in and out.

If it helps, you can time yourself breathing and repeat a pattern similar to the following for as long as you feel necessary:

  • Breathe in for 3 seconds
  • Hold your breath for 3 seconds
  • Breathe out for 3 seconds
  • Hold your breath for 3 seconds

Focusing on a pattern can be beneficial when dealing with immense stress because it helps you take your mind off of everything even more effectively. I use a similar pattern to the one explained above and I usually repeat for about a minute.

Thank you for tuning into the last article of the month! We really appreciate all of you, especially since you’re reading the very first articles we’ve ever written. We will be increasing our upload schedule for July, and we also have some very exciting surprises for July, so stay tuned for the upload schedule coming tomorrow to find out what these surprises are! Please leave any more tips you guys can think of down in the comment section down below, and feel free to leave any questions or suggestions either down in the comment section or contact us with the information in the contact page. Thanks for reading and see y’all next month!

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