Five Ways to Prevent Stress in your Senior Year

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Senior year is one of the most hectic times in the life of a young person. You may be just getting started in your senior year, but I bet you know by now that it’s no walk in the park: deadlines, scholarship applications and college tours abound, and your stress level may be rising. I believe your senior year is a really special, irreplaceable time, and that you can definitely celebrate instead of stressing about every little thing with just a few simple tips:

-Essential Oils: Before you go thinking this is an outdated, hippie idea, please hear me out! The research on essential oils is pretty amazing, and one of the best oil to combat stress is called Clary Sage. It smells delicious, and can help balance hormones, lower stress, and even can help digestion. It’s basically an all-in-one natural aid, and you can diffuse it in a really simple water diffuser while you study or read.

-Exercise: Duh…I know, I know. Scheduling in exercise seems obvious, but can really fall by the wayside when you’re under intense pressure. I like to schedule in a walk or run every day, and you would be surprised how much free time you can come up with when you write it down and commit. You could even get a friend to stay accountable with!

-UNPLUG! We live in a social media heavy world, and I know it’s hard to step away from email, texts, and social media platforms (hello, Instagram stories), but it’s been shown that too much phone usage can really ramp up stress and anxiety. It helps to have one day a week (no, it doesn’t have to be the whole day), or a set hour a day when you can turn off your phone to read, take a bubble bath, or meditate or pray. A great time to do this is after school, before dinner. This time slot provides a good time to really focus on homework and frees up your evening.

-Find a mentor: Whether it’s a parent or a trusted adult, it really helps to have someone to help you with applications, projects, and even just listening to you when you’re struggling. Talking through things can help process stress in a healthy way, and can get things off your chest, rather then upping your anxiety by holding it all in. Needing to find a trusted adult? You can check in at your school to find a guidance counselor or an advisor.

-Eat right: I know its SO HARD, but I find my anxiety and stress really go up when I am eating junk food and lots of caffeine. Especially when you’re under a lot of stress, fast food and sugar sound very appealing, but they cause lots of mood swings and weight fluctuations, which can add to your anxiety. Instead of dosing yourself with tons of sugary coffee, try unsweetened or infused ice tea or water. Or, force yourself to order a tall ice coffee and a large ice water at the same time, so you remember to drink more water than coffee.

These will certainly not eliminate all the stress during your senior year, but I hope it helps! Your big year should be filled with memorable moments, not clouded with so much anxiety that you can’t remember most of it.

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