Now that the holiday season has come to a close, the beginning of another school semester begins. Each new semester can bring along with it a lot of fear and worry for anxious teens. There are new classes to attend, new teachers to meet, and new classmates to befriend. Sometimes, the stress and worry about the load of school work that may be assigned during the semester can be anxiety provoking as well. Managing this fear, concern, and worry can be difficult. Here are a few ways to help cope with anxiety as school starts up again.
Create a Plan
It can be overwhelming to think about what the new semester will bring in terms of school work, teachers, and social interactions. Although it can be tempting to want to avoid our anxious thoughts about the upcoming semester, it can also be helpful to tune into those thoughts. Imagine yourself in a stressful or anxiety provoking experience — after imagining that, it can be helpful to think about skills that you have used in the past to help you get through the experience. With those skills you used in the past in mind, imagine yourself getting through the experience and seeing a positive outcome. Because you have already imagined yourself using these skills, creating a plan to use can help you be more successful in the moment as you getting through the adjustment. It can also help to think through some events or scenarios that could come up during class — such as ice breakers. We all have had teachers that want us to share a fun fact about ourselves, and it can catch us off guard. Thinking about a fun fact ahead of time and practicing saying that fun fact in the mirror can be beneficial! This way, you are prepared with what to say, and won’t have to worry as it gets closer to your turn.
Reach out to Others
It can be helpful to reach out to friends and vent about your day. This gives you the opportunity to talk things through with people who know what you are talking about. They may even feel the same way you’re feeling! Talking to friends also gives you the chance to share a good laugh and can help you destress throughout the school day.
Increase Fun Experiences
As school starts up again, it can be easy to forget about fun activities as homework and study time increase. Don’t forget to continue to do fun things in your life! It can be good to write out some fun things that you want to continue doing throughout the week and scheduling them in your calendar. Make time for whatever you want to do, whether it’s to play video games, go on a walk, or talk with friends. Just because school is coming back does not mean that every fun thing in your life has to be put on pause.
Overall, these are a few ways to help you cope with your anxiety as school starts again. Create a plan, reaching out to others, and increasing fun experiences. You can think plan ahead which skill you will to use in an overwhelming moment, vent to friends about your classes, and continue to complete fun activities that you love!
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