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Navigating Stress as a High School Student

Stress and anxiety are something I've been navigating with as a senior in high school, maintaining a part-time job, and simply trying to meet expectations. My name is Arven Mohanathas, and I am a student coping with stress. One of the main triggers of my stress has been school. It is difficult to maintain my grades in order to meet university expectations, and the worry that arises from not knowing what I am doing is just enough. However, over the last two months, I have developed ways to cope with my stress while still working part-time and managing school.


To begin, make time for yourself, whether it's through doing your hobbies, discovering new interests, or just spending time with your friends. For me, I find spending time with my friends to be a way to relieve my stress. Going out together, whether on-call or not, is extremely helpful. It was difficult for me at first to find a hobby that I enjoyed doing on a regular basis, but I gradually found that getting on a call with friends and simply chatting genuinely helps. This would also be handy while completing schoolwork since my friends would advise each other with homework and assignments rather than doing them alone. If we were stuck on anything, we'd ask each other for assistance and solve it together. This means we're learning together.


Additionally, make a plan for your day. I don't blame you; I felt it was a waste of time and effort at first, but it really made my life simpler. Creating a daily agenda is beneficial, especially if you work. My shifts are unpredictable; it may be a 5-hour shift or an 8-hour shift, and I was exhausted after coming back home and completing schoolwork as soon as I came home. I use the app "Todoist" to help me organize my day and create reminders to ensure that I do the tasks I need to complete. To be honest, it doesn't even have to be an app on your phone or a desktop; you could just create a checklist to tick off the things that need to be completed. In other words, preparing ahead of time and creating reminders for yourself may be an easy approach to prevent stress and anxiety; it only takes a few minutes out of your day to do so.


Finally, GET ENOUGH SLEEP. I can't emphasize this enough, and I'm sure you have heard it before. Get at least 8 hours of sleep every night to give you that extra kick in the morning. I used to stay up late every night procrastinating on schoolwork and sleeping at 3 a.m. It became a habit at one point. I was too tired and sluggish to go to school and then work, so I didn't achieve some goals, which eventually reflected in my work ethic. When you return home from school, you may relax in whatever way you choose, whether it's by scrolling through Tiktok, Instagram, snapping on Snapchat, or by sleeping, my personal favorite. Begin the tasks once you have gotten the rest you need to power through the remainder of the day. I like to reward myself along the way since it keeps me motivated to keep going, such as by eating a snack or looking through my phone.


All in all, stress is difficult to overcome and takes time to resolve. Everyone approaches stress and anxiety differently, and I hope my experience and way of coping can help you ease. Please speak with someone, a friend, a family member, or your teacher; everyone goes through it and has their own way of dealing with it.


If you need a professional to talk to about stress or anxiety, please refer to the free counseling services available at https://www.whatsupwalkin.ca/.


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