Stress comes naturally to all of us. We often feel stressed when an important assignment is due in the near future, or before we have to present an assignment to the entire class. This pandemic has proved to be a stressful occurrence to most, for various reasons. Whether you’re feeling stressed for emotional reasons, from homework, from being cooped up inside, or about the current situation in general, try out these 10 ways to make you feel more relaxed and present.
Please remember that in these times of uncertainty, you are never alone. If you feel like your mental and emotional health is being negatively affected by the current situation, it is encouraged that you talk to someone for support, whether it be a friend, classmate, teacher, guardian, local help line or someone you trust.
- Keep your mind busy
Stop procrastinating! Sitting and thinking isn’t going to take the stress off of your mind. If you are feeling stressed about work, sometimes the best way to help relieve that stress is to get busy. If there’s a hobby or skill you’ve always wanted to learn, now’s the perfect time to do so! Trying something new may be exactly what you need to take your mind off of whatever’s stressing you out.
- Play or listen to music
A simple and engaging way to relieve stress. Studies have proven that simply hearing a song you love can lower your heart rate and make you feel more relaxed. If you want something fun to do at home as a break from all your stressful thoughts, pick up an instrument and make some noise!
Studies have shown that exercising regularly holds a strong link to mental well-being and anxiety/stress reduction. While this may be more difficult to do in quarantine without proper equipment, exercising turns out to be an amazing way to take your mind off of all that stress. Go for a run, bike ride, or check out online workouts that you can do at home!
- Contact someone for academic support
If you just aren’t understanding that online lesson you’ve been given, don’t be afraid to ring up a teacher or fellow classmate who you know can help you. Talking to and being taught by someone is extremely effective, and can also help calm you down.
- Contact someone for emotional support
As mentioned before, if you are feeling emotionally stressed do not be afraid to talk to someone you know for support. There are a variety of help lines you can also use if you feel you need them, including the Mental Health Commission of Canada, Kids Help Phone and the Canadian Mental Health Association.
- Getting sleep!
Sleep is an effective stress-reliever. As a teenager, it’s important to try for 8 to 10 hours of sleep per night in order to help your brain function properly the next day. Sleep is important to not just academic success but to overall health and well-being.
- Meditation or yoga
Meditation and yoga are both popular ways to clear your mind and relieve it of any stress or anxious feelings you may be experiencing. There are tons of online videos, tutorials and exercises that you can explore from home!
- Go outside
Go out onto the porch, take in the sun and breathe in the fresh air. This change of scenery can be relaxing to the senses and promote a sense of calm in you. Spending time outside is a great way to relieve any stress built up.
- Eat healthy
You often feel great about yourself when you eat healthy, and studies have shown a connection between healthy eating and stress reduction. In contrast, eating unhealthy, or not eating at all, can largely affect your ability to work through stressful situations and focus on work at home.
- Change it up
Change up your workspace every once in a while, whether it be moving from living room couch to living room chair, or outside the house completely! Keeping it interesting will free your mind, reduce stress and help you focus better, but this largely depends on the person. If you’re someone who finds it hard to sit at the desk and work, try moving around!
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