The countdown to first semester finals is on! These are sure to be highly stressful times for most students. In addition to the standard stressors such as jobs, extracurriculars and homework, the changes in weather as well as the desire to perform well on finals have the potential to throw students for a loop. To help your student perform at their best, help them beat stress by utilizing “Four A’s”:
- Avoid unnecessary stress- Teach your students the importance of boundaries and prioritization. It is okay for them to say no to people and activities that might might add extra stress during finals preparation
- Alter the situation- Encourage your students to talk about their stress instead of keeping it in. This is also a great opportunity to reinforce the value of self care activities that might help them decompress instead of overloading on academics.
- Adapt to the stressor- Take the time to help your students shift their behaviors toward things that will benefit them during this time. Scientists recognize that teens need 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night. Unfortunately, most teens sleep only 7 hours each night and during finals, they may be tempted to sleep even less. Sleeping, and even eating, regularly not only decreases stress but powers your students bodies to perform their best mentally.
- Accept things you can’t change- Finals aren’t going away. By accepting this reality, students have greater control over the things they can change in relation to finals. Study time, gratitude, personal time and self care are in your students’ control. Each of these things can work toward positively influencing their finals experience.
Finally, encourage your students to participate in the fun activities offered during the school day! There are a ton of school-wide activities taking place this week (Dec. 6-10) that can help your student chill out and de-stress including Winter Week dress up days, movie showings and gift wrapping. The Wellness Center is also offering easy, stress relieving crafts during lunch time each day including origami, slime making and more!
Happy All-idays to you and your loved ones from your Wellness Center team!
(Source: Keep Calm During finals by Lisa Brickert, MSW, LCSW)
Kiara Thomas- Wellness Intake Specialist