I get it. As a junior in high school, school seems more stressful now more than ever. From SATs to midterms to thinking about college, it can all just get to be too much. I don’t know how many times I’ve wanted to just drop out and just coop up under my covers binge-watching Netflix. But you’ve got to peel back those covers at some point and when you do, here are a few helpful tips that will arm you with what you need to get back on your feet.
- Think Different: Listen, that one test or quiz is not going to make the difference between failing and passing in the long term. It may suck, for lack of a better word, but don’t let it stress you out. Just take a step back and reassess your situation. Unfortunately, there’s nothing you can do about that last bad grade, but what you can do is control how you feel about it and what you can do next. Whether that be seeing if you can do some extra credit, going over your test and understanding your mistakes, or even just staying after and talking it over with your teacher. Make the time to figure out the game plan going forward and stick to it as much as you can. To say it simply, just take everything in stride and stay positive.
- Be Realistic: I know it might be tempting to want to go here and do this and hang out over there as well as do all your homework and study for that test, etc. etc., but don’t bite off more than you can chew. If you plan for a million things, it’s likely you will only end up fulfilling one. So, just be honest with yourself and figure out what is capable for you to do in the amount of time you have. That way, when you actually are able to finish all the goals you have set out for yourself, you’ll feel more accomplished and motivated than you would have if you overbooked yourself.
- Sleep/ Breaks: This one’s pretty self-explanatory, but let me elaborate. No, three hours of sleep is not enough. Without a healthy amount of sleep (i.e. seven to eight hours), not only will it be harder to concentrate, but you’ll also feel less motivated in the long run. Now I understand that sometimes it’s inevitable. Whether there’s too much homework, a project, a test — I can relate. However, you shouldn’t make a habit of staying up because in the long run, your performance will suffer and you’ll give your body less time to rest from the already stressful day/ prepare for the day ahead of you. Likewise, no one can maintain constant focus for hours (if you can, then hats off to you) and that’s okay. Take some breaks here and there to allow yourself to cool down and get away from the task at end. That way, when you start again, you’ll feel more refreshed and calmed down, and you’ll actually be able to focus.
- Plan Your Schedule: This is pretty similar to tip 2, but that’s because it really works. Planning out your week can really take the pressure off because you’ll know exactly what you need to do and when you have to do it. Whether that be planning out a study schedule or figuring out times to just kick back and relax, a planner can go a long way in taking the pressure off. Like I always like to say, don’t cram it, plan it (just don’t get crazy and plan out years in advance and remember that life happens, so be open to change)!
- Don’t Compare Yourself: Dr. Seuss once said, “Today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you.” Yes, it’s understandable to get jealous sometimes, which can lead to a whole bundle of stress, but don’t forget, you’re awesome just the way you are, and there is no one who can change the sheer amount of your individuality-ness — ‘nuff said.
I apologize in advance for the rhyming but… I hope these tips were helpful a bit, and hopefully they’ll help get rid of your stress lickity- split. But if not, I’m really sorry indeed and wish that you will regardless succeed. That’s it for this edition of 5 helpful tips. Tune in next time when I try to help you get a grip!