Struggling to manage stress?

Students share the issues with managing stress and their academic workload.

Students share the issues with managing stress and their academic workload.

Dana Baker

By Camille Desjardins 

Despite their different grades, levels of intelligence or lifestyles, stress can happen to any high school student.

“[Stress] affects [the students’] mood, it affects the way they eat, the way they socialize with people, it affects how they get sick, how much they can heal from getting sick,” Health and PE teacher Jason Murphy said.

Stress is hard to keep on top of at times, and can often build up before it is realized. Students in higher level classes can receive an overwhelming amount of homework and projects. Many of these students feel like stress interferes with their life in many aspects, including outside of school.

“When we stress out about grades and tests and homework it does change our mood,” Freshman Celine Sayegh said. “Although some people can control how it affects their mood, some people can’t control that so they end up taking it out on other people.”

While stress can become negative for students, there are ways it can be fixed and minimized.

Higher level classes lead to more homework and more stress.

“My other friends that take different classes or take lower classes, I feel like they have less stress and more time to do other things,” Sayegh said.

One of the ways to work through stress is physical activity. This can include taking walks, dancing to music, playing with friends or planning workouts to exercise your body.

According to Murphy when one engages in physical activity everyday, and sets plans for when it can be done, stress levels will be lowered. Murphy sees big differences in stress levels of his students who take advanced PE, from those who don’t.

“Some of the kids who have Advanced PE and are able to channel some of their energy during the day eventually do  better in school,” Murphy said.

Cristi Goldberg said if school stress is affecting a student’s mental, emotional or physical health, they need to take measures to remove whatever is causing excessive stress. Those measures could include taking a lower level class, or dropping out of an after school activity. Goldberg advises that students should not feel guilty about quitting or dropping out of something too difficult.

“We generally want students to stay committed but you have to recognize when something’s difficult, and it’s ok to do that,” Goldberg said.

As stressful as school can sometimes be, students should not forget to relax.

“Students need to understand that their whole lives are not going to be determined by how their sophomore, junior or senior year of school and their grades,” Murphy said. “One failed quiz or one missed homework assignment cannot change a student’s life.”