How to Help Your Teen Manage Their School-Related Stress
The most challenging obstacle for teens is school-related stress. They have to balance a social life, stay on top of their academics, and take care of themselves - all at the same time! Without a doubt, this will be incredibly overwhelming for them. As parents, we can support them by giving them the tools and strategies to efficiently manage their stress.
This is how to help your teens manage their school-related stress:
Assist them with time-management their tasks
Efficiently time-management is a necessary skill all teens must implement into their schedules. Since there are so many responsibilities and obligations on a teen’s to do list, learning how to prioritize their most important task and complete assignments within an allocated amount of time increases their productivity. Otherwise, a lack of time-management in one’s day will put a teen in a constant state of stress and anxiety.
Remind them to commit to daily self-care
During the school year, academics are at the forefront of a teen’s mind and everything else, including self-care, will most likely be put on the back burner. Remind your teen that despite having school work as their main priority, their self-care should never be neglected. They should deliberately take action every day to cultivate their emotional, mental, and physical well-being. The most basic methods of self-care include eating three solid meals a day, showering, maintaining personal hygiene and grooming habits, and getting an adequate amount of sleep every night.
Open the floor for discussion over their concerns
Sometimes, all teens need when they’re stressed is for someone to lend an open ear so they can voice their concerns and feelings. As a parent, we can act as that supportive person that can validate them. To do that, we need to offer them the chance to speak freely and vent about whatever is on their mind. During this time, we don’t necessarily need to give our teen advice or an opinion. The majority of the time, a teenagers just want to be heard and understood. You can also direct your teens to other modes of communication, such as pointing out their friends can also act as emotional support and professional help is always available if they need it as well.
Encourage them to dedicate time to their passions
What activity makes your teen feel fulfilled and happy? Encourage them to invest time into their hobbies and passions in conjunction with studying and completing school work. Sometimes, for teens, one of the best ways to cope with stress is by winding down in solitude, retreating into a relaxing mental space, and directing their focus to an activity that temporarily distracts them from their stress. Plus, their hobbies and passions can act as incentives after they finish their homework.
Emphasize that they should avoid harmful coping mechanisms
Some coping methods have the ability to be harmful without teens even realizing it, such as abusing substances like drugs and alcohol. What may appear to be a temporary escape that numbs their stress or takes their mind off things can have long-term consequences on their health. Teen addiction is one of the most prominent concerns in the U.S.! Take a moment to educate them on what harmful coping mechanisms are and the ramifications of engaging in them. However, end with directing them towards healthy coping strategies that will only be helpful rather than harmful to them.
In reality, teens endure a lot of stress and feel pressured to have everything together! As parents, we should be their main support system - because as long as teens get the support they need and learn to cope with their stress in a healthy matter, they will only continuously move forward, thrive in their academic career, and maintain their emotional and physical well-being.