The past few years have been difficult for all of us, taking a toll on everyone’s mental health. Adolescent mental health is no exception.
Young people faced some challenges that adults did not. uncertainty in the exam, Class Accidents, lost colleagues are only lost as peer relationships become more important and distance/non-distance/remote education is dealt with a little bit. Many of us haven’t attended a “regular” school year since 2018-2019. It was tough.
We wanted to give some support – but all of our blogs come from a place of live experience, and even though we were teenagers once upon a time, it was a different time and a different world when we were in school. Trying to write anything felt completely unoriginal, so we were thrilled when Nix, an 11th grader, offered to help us.
Most of us are back in the classroom now, but we still experience periods of isolation due to illnessdisability, or chronic health conditions.
Remote school can be tricky. Hard not being able to see friends face to face. Stimulate It is often difficult for ourselves to do homework when we are sitting at home, and that is if they send us any work at all. What makes this even more difficult is the fact that we can’t plan – we don’t know if we’re going to be at school or at home; It can change from week to week.
Although schools often try to support our mental health, it can still be challenging. Sometimes schools ask us how they can support us – but We don’t always know. We may know we’re struggling, but we don’t know what we need, and that’s okay. When we feel we can, maintaining an open dialogue with our school or college can help them help us.
worry and learning
Most people felt more Worry It’s been the norm for the past few years, and anxiety makes studying really difficult.
Even a little anxiety can happen affect our memory; We have to bring back parts of the learning we already tried once. Exams rely more on memory than it was before. We don’t get formula papers and things like that, so when anxiety affects our memory, it can have a huge impact on our grades, maybe our place in the sixth or University.
Sometimes we end up in vortex anxiety. We’ve missed a lot of school over the past few years, to the point where we often encounter things we haven’t seen before, which can make us really anxious. The more anxious we are, the more we struggle to study. The more we struggle to study, the more anxious we become.
When this happens, the best we can do is pause, breathe, and pause for a moment (yes, even on an exam!). If we’re on a test, it’s important to remember that we did our best in the time we spent, and that any questions we answered have already been resolved. Any time we have left is time to build on that, making our work better.
Show feelings… or not
In elementary school, it often feels OK to cry. But when we get to high school, it can cause problems if we show too much emotion. Many of us worry that if we cry or show “unacceptable” feelings, we will be the target of bullying. To avoid this, we keep everything inside.
The problem is that when we don’t let them out, our delusional emotions keep coming back. If we learn not to cry when we’re at school, it can be difficult to cry at home as well, which makes it really hard to get rid of these pent-up feelings healthily.
This can be worse for those who progress as males, and often gets worse as we get older. We hear messages like “You’re 15, you shouldn’t cry, you’re no longer a child” (although we’re not adults, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with crying, and of course, there will be times when emotions run high – we’re teenagers).
It’s important to remember that although we may not feel comfortable showing emotion at school, there is nothing wrong with crying or showing emotion.
Things that help: Physical health
Taking care of our physical health can help improve our mental health.
Eat a balanced diet And drinking enough water can make a huge difference in how we feel. It’s important to include the odd indulgence – eating cute things can lift our mood!
Universe physically active It can help us sleep better, and when we’ve been studying all day, it helps us feel like we’ve done something and changed from sitting. However, it is not always easy. Exercising with friends can be so much fun – that we forget it’s good for us!! But we can’t do that if we isolate ourselves.
There are some exercises that we can do at home. If we had equipment, we could do things like weights. If we don’t, there are a lot of different exercises we can do with no equipment at all. YouTube has some great training videos that we can follow, and so does TikTok.
Sometimes, the hardest part of physical activity is to keep going. Things that can help include setting small, achievable goals, appearing on a playlist that gets us going, and following people on social media who motivate us to start moving. It’s important to make sure our goals are small and achievable – any changes in fitness or appearance will take time (and that’s okay!).
Things that help: Mental health
moments quiet reflection It can help calm our fears. If we have it (and we can do it safely), candles and incense can help get us into the zone. Spending time apart from others and worrying about our daily routine can be important, especially if we’re all isolating ourselves together.
People sometimes say that playing is bad, but it can be a great way to stop playing and escape from the real world for a while. So does reading books – fiction books can take us to another world away from the pressures of this world.
People often say that routine Beneficial for mental health, and can be. However, sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves to stick to it, which leads to more stress.
Routine is important – but so is balance. For example, we need to do basic self-care every day, but there’s nothing wrong with deciding to switch our evening showers to the next morning and grab an early night if we’re tired.
Just like routine, Social media It can also be useful or unhelpful depending on how we use it.
It can be a stop and mindless scrolling can be a relief. We can use it to talk with friends, especially those who live in different time zones. It can also be fun – there’s no shortage of funny videos.
Most apps and websites use algorithms to determine what appears in our feed. The more we look at a topic, the more it appears in our feed. Sometimes that’s cool – who doesn’t love another funny cat video?!
Unfortunately, sometimes that’s not very helpful, but fortunately, there are things we can do about it. We can choose who to follow, mute or block unhelpful accounts. On some sites, we can even block certain words. If we find that a lot of posts appear about a topic that we don’t really want to see, we can often click on the post and tell the site or app that we don’t want to see it. Over time, the algorithm will learn to stop showing us things like that.
Perhaps no teenager out there has been able to avoid discussing how much Sleeps. Many of us like to stay up and sleep. The problem is that we often have to get up early for school.
We may be someone who doesn’t need a lot of sleep. But if we know, for example, that we feel rubbish in less than eight hours of sleep, and have to wake up at 6:30 a.m. to go to school, we need to try to schedule a 10:30 p.m. bedtime.
If we’re someone who can waste hours on a good book, or browse the phone thoughtlessly, it can be helpful to tune in to our bodies, recognize when we’re tired, and go to sleep.
When mental health deteriorates
We all have Early warning signs Which tells us our mental health is a bit shaky. Learning them may require some trial and error and self-reflection.
We all have Signs of things slipping. We can become obsessed with routine, or forgo routine entirely at the expense of our health and self-care. Keeping up with good hygiene can be really difficult. We may skip food, or fall into emotional eating patterns. Struggling to get up, struggling to sleep, recurring bouts of anxiety, and feeling jittery all the time are also signs that things are not right. Sometimes we stop enjoying the things we used to do too.
When Mental Health Slips: Things That Help
Spotting our own early warning signs can help us do something about them.
If we have someone we can trust, be it a friend or an adult, we can talk to them about how we feel. Sometimes, we just need to let it out. Other times, we need more support or find it helpful to solve problems together.
Relaxation time is vital. This can be difficult when we have a lot of school work or when we play between school and a job. But time off from school and work can make a huge difference to our mood.
Having a Small Wins notebook helps remind us that we are doing a much better job than we think. The key word here is “small”. These don’t have to be groundbreaking discoveries or world record-breaking achievements. It can include things like “I took a shower” or “I got out of bed.” Our small gains may be different from those of others because we all find different things difficult – and that’s okay.
Remember – different things work with different people, and that’s okay. When we feel trash, we need to prioritize ourselves and do what’s right for us – not what’s right for our best friend.
When Mental Health Slips: Helping a Friend
if it was Friend Struggling, we may be able to help them with some parts of self-care, such as encouraging them to eat or drink enough. We can take them outside to their favorite food, or bring their favorite snack for lunch if we’re at school.
Reminding them that they are loved and appreciated can mean more than we know. Reminding them of jokes or internal memories we share with them can help lift their mood and remind them how much we love them and how much we care about them. For example, if we have a joke inside Spider-Man, we can go on a Spider-Man themed day.
When it’s hard to ask for help
sometimes, Asking for help is really hard Because we might worry about what people will think. People have become more mentally conscious since the lockdown, but it can still be tricky. In fact, we all have mental health, and like physical health, sometimes we need help with it.
We may not think we deserve help or the supportOr that the way we feel is our fault. This can create a negative spiral that makes us feel worse and worse. But We deserve help and supportnot our fault.
Think ending in
We love this quote because it shows that our characteristics do not determine our future, and that the state of our mental health does not determine who we can be:
“Sometimes good people make bad choices, that doesn’t mean they’re evil, it just means they’re human.” – Sui Ishida.
Please help us to help others and share this post, you never know who might need it.