It’s that time of year again, back to school! We can’t escape those commercials about school supplies or walk into a store without being reminded of having the first day of school outfit. Worst of all, every time we are reminded of our summer homework, we get palpitations. How are we expected to handle ten months of school if we are so nervous for classes to begin anyway?
Being in high school is hard, no one can argue with that. With the constant need to update our social media accounts, make new friends, and go out, it seems almost impossible to succeed in school, participate in extra-curriculars, and think about college. Let’s be real, finding the perfect balance for academics and downtime only makes us feel hopeless. So, how can we maintain our sanity this school year?
First, this fall our only goal should be to try our best. I know it sounds cheesy, but honestly, it works. If you try your best but don’t succeed, you can’t get mad at yourself for that. Likewise, if you know you didn’t give it your all, your results simply do not reflect your potential. Look back at your grades from last year to make reasonable (yet still high-reaching) goals for this year.
Second, figure out what makes you motivated. Whether it be keeping a to-do list, giving yourself rewards, or reminding yourself of your dream school, pursue something you know can keep you on task. I know that whenever I feel academically lazy, I remember that my goal is to graduate high school feeling like I reached my potential.
Third, find something in or outside of school you like. Whether that be working in a book store, playing sports, taking pictures, or taking naps, pursue something that makes you happy. We all need time in our day where we don’t feel like we are working but rather feel like we are enjoying ourselves. Often, these little happy moments are what keeps us sane and calm, which makes this vital. Remember that some days you might need more of this fun time while other days you need less, that’s normal!
Lastly, figure out what makes you nervous and talk about it with someone. Sometimes when we feel anxious we think that there might be something wrong with us or that we’re suffering alone, but that’s not the case at all. Non-intrusive anxiety can sometimes be helpful, as it helps us learn about our coping strategies and encourages us to make good choices. The anxiety you might feel before a test makes you want to study, and therefore teaches you good study habits. However, when these anxious thoughts start to get out of hand or uncomfortable, the best thing you can do is talk to someone. Talking with your friends, teachers, counselors and family members is an amazing way to relieve your stress.
So, this school year, focus on you. Focus on your hobbies, your grades, your interests and your potential. Remember that you are a human, and like any human, you are allowed to feel tired, worried, or stressed. Remember to pursue what interests you. And lastly, know that you always should have someone to talk to, Teen Line is here for you.
– Kimia, 16