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Starting the School Year Off Mentally Strong

School Stress

We are just a few weeks away from the start of a new school year. Many people experience stress and anxiety when they return to school. It is not uncommon for feelings of overwhelm to be exacerbated by a busy schedule and after-school activities. Before the school year begins, it’s important to check in with your mental health. Mental health issues can make academics extremely challenging if they aren’t addressed. It’s beneficial to check on your mental health whether you’re in high school, college, or have children in school. Check out these practical tips to help you prepare for the new school year. 

Self-Assessment 

Self-awareness is an important part of checking in with your mental health. Keep track of any drastic changes in your answers by asking yourself a few questions daily. Build these questions into your day to make them a habit. You can ask them after waking up or while having breakfast in the morning. These questions include:  

  1. What’s my mood like today?  
  2. Is there anything worrying me right now? 
  3. How well am I meeting my basic needs? (Diet, exercise, sleep) 
  4. How can I bring joy to my life today? 

By answering these questions, you will be able to see where you are in any given day. Ask your children these questions too, if they are younger. Your mental health is impacted by nutrition, self-care, current stress, and your emotions, so it’s important to pay attention to them all. It might seem silly at first to ask yourself these questions. Over time, you will find that it is a natural way to manage your mental health. 

Self-Centering 

Centering yourself is a wonderful way to check in on your mental health before school starts. You can do this by practicing mindful breathing, meditation, or journaling. There are many ways in which centering yourself can make a difference in your life. 

When we are focused on doing something, we fail to notice what happens before we begin. The difference between winning the race and giving up halfway can be a positive mindset or belief that things will work out. Getting centered every day can make a huge difference in your life.  

Prior to starting a big project or test, you should follow the same principle. 

Before we even start, we often think about how hard it will be or how long it will take. The mindset you adopt throughout the school year can greatly affect the quality of your experience. If you want to increase the chances of a positive outcome, take a moment to center yourself before you start anything. The message can be as simple as, “Today is going to be great!” 

Maintain a support system 

Are you supported by anyone? When you have a problem, who can you turn to for help?  It is essential for your mental health that you have someone you can talk to, such as a trusted family member or friend. A partner, sibling, faith leader, or therapist may be able to help. It is important to have someone in your life who listens to you, gives you good advice (when you ask for it), respects you, and allows you to make your own decisions for growth (including mistakes).  

Seek professional help as soon as possible if you are experiencing difficulty with your mental health or school. We’re here to help!

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