Reporting with Hills Pride

The Trailblazer

Reporting with Hills Pride

The Trailblazer

Reporting with Hills Pride

The Trailblazer

    How To Zap That Stress Away

    Hey, Hills! Hopefully you are adjusted to the new school year by now, and are into the full swing of things!

    Over the summer, movies, TV shows, and back-to-school commercials made the first days of school seem like the best out of the whole year – everyone is perfectly tanned, back from vacation, smiling, ready with their new backpacks and pencils. I think we all know that underneath it all, it’s not really like that. High school can be pretty unnerving at times, especially at the very start. Whether you’re a freshman getting used to new classes, a sophomore taking chemistry (good luck), a junior looking at colleges, or a senior filling out college apps, things can get real stressful real fast. Going from summer mode to school mode has got to be one of the hardest things to do. As a senior who probably stresses out a little too much and is prone to major anxiety, I think I can say that I know a thing or two about stress relief. Before you give up on everything and decide to drop out of school, take a couple of minutes to follow these easy tips:

    1. Take A Deep Breath: Relaxing and taking a deep breath fixes pretty much anything and everything. It relaxes muscles and quiets the mind, making the body less tense. Take a five-minute break and focus on your breathing. Sit with your back straight and breathe in through your nose, and then exhale through your mouth slowly. When you take breaths from your abdomen, rather than shallow ones from your chest, you inhale more oxygen. The more oxygen you get, the less tense and anxious you feel.

    2. Slow Down: In addition to the breathing, take a moment to look at everything around you. Notice your feet hitting the ground when you’re walking, or the air hitting your face when you’re outside. When you spend time in the moment and focus on your senses, instead of your future and your problems, it becomes easy to appreciate the little things and, naturally, you should feel less tense.

    3. Decompress: If you’re home and have a heat wrap, wrap that around your neck and/or shoulders for around 10 minutes. Close your eyes and relax your body. Staying still for a while should help to relax you. Getting a massage or taking a warm bath also has the same effect.

    4. Get Active: If you’re like me and you can’t stand to stay still for too long, go get some exercise! Running works wonders for me. Virtually any form of physical activity can act as a stress reliever. It pumps up your feel-good endorphins and other natural chemicals. It also refocuses your mind on your body’s movement, therefore improving your mood. Try walking, jogging, biking, swimming, weightlifting, or any other activity that you might enjoy.

    5. Laugh: A good sense of humor can’t cure all illnesses, but it can totally make you feel better. Even faking a laugh helps. Laughing causes positive physical changes in your body and cools down your stress response. So grab a funny friend and talk to them, watch a comedy, or read some jokes. It’ll help!

    6. Catch some sleep: Sleep is probably the most important natural stress reducer of them all. Too little sleep leaves us cranky and irritable, while too much of it makes us sluggish and slow. Find the right balance between too much and too little that makes you feel good throughout the day. Take a nap after school if you come home tired, and avoid going to sleep too late! Establishing a good bedtime routine is essential to your health.

    7. Talk To A Friend: When you’re stressed out and you don’t know what to do about it, your first instinct might be to hide it and try to deal with it yourself. Instead, reaching out to family and friends might be exactly what you need! Social interaction offers a distraction from your problems. Go catch up with a buddy, email a relative, or visit your neighbor. Other people are the best support!

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