In high school, there are a wide variety of stressors. Fitting in, working while in school, family issues and figuring out what path to take are just a few of the many issues affecting teenagers. College prep is a major event and should be handled delicately since it will shape the path that the students will take.
Making a clear and focused decision in terms of figuring out the future is a major cause of stress in a teenager’s life. Family pressures and study habits can sometimes deter the process, thus causing a bit of panic. In this case, it may be necessary to sit down calmly with the teenager to make a list of some of their goals and interests in order to figure out what the right school and major might be.
Another way to help eliminate stress, even though it may not be a popular idea, is to limit the amount of video games and time spent idle in front of a tv or computer. When stress has no outlet, particular during the teen years, it becomes jumbled and has no means of escaping. In this way, more stress can build, and may even be let out in unhealthy ways. Teens should be encouraged to spend time exercising, playing sports, etc., and afterwards their minds will be clearer and more focused.
One method of stress reduction that is helpful for this age group is to have a “no holds barred” vent session. Teenagers crave attention and to have an ear to bend is more helpful than we realize. If they can talk openly to someone they trust about anything and everything, then there is room for positivity to come through. It is important not to judge or criticize during this type of stress relief so that more stress is not added, defeating the purpose.
Lastly, it is important to take moments to reflect or meditate, controlling the breathing and heart rate, which are elevated during stressful times. As a teenager, the pressures mount and many people in their lives have expectations of what they should be doing. It is important to pause in a room free from noise and other distractions. Those in the internet generation do not often give themselves a chance to focus on one thing at a time, so moments of silence are especially helpful to alleviate stress.
Matlock Academy is a West Palm Beach private school that understands teen issues and has created a curriculum for stress reduction and better decision-making. Helping the students feel empowered and creating a sense of balance in their lives are the ultimate goals. Matlock strives to help students focus better to achieve their potential.