Where does one begin when speaking about the stressors that cause anxiety and that come with being a teen in this day and age. The world around us has changed greatly over the years, and it’s safe to say that the people in it have too. I myself know that anxiety builds up like lego blocks, especially as a senior in high school juggling so many things with crazy expectations.
As I go into the second semester of my senior year, I constantly think about my future and all the things I have going on. How can one not have anxiety when the social norm is to have your life planned out when you’re 18 years old? In a competitive community, the expectation is that you apply to college, know what you want to do for the rest of your life, pay for it and still have enough money to cover other expenses like trips and food, get a degree, most likely go to grad school, and get a job right out of college. It seems like I have the next 10 years of my life handed on a silver platter- but what if it’s too much?
Having hours of homework every night, not to mention extra work for all of the extracurriculars like clubs and sports can be draining, and nowadays it’s so hard for people to see that your mind is always running and going a million miles a minute. Mental health and anxiety have been on an uprise – but it makes sense; the high expectations from school, family and not to mention social media, inevitably cause billions of teenagers around the world stress and anxiety. Here’s what an in-depth day in my life looks like to give you an idea. Now, before I continue, I think it’s important to preface that this isn’t to make anyone feel bad for me or feel bad about themselves. My hope in writing this is so others can relate to me and learn something about dealing with anxiety from reading this.
6:15- My alarm goes off- it’s time to wake up and get ready for school
6:15-6:35- Open social media, check on what everyone else is doing immediately on Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat. Most likely sees unrealistic lives and body standards
6:35- Get out of bed – motivate me to get ready for school and look just like those unrealistic body standards
6:35-7- Get ready for school, put my things together, start the car, etc.
7:00 – Eat breakfast
7:05- Leave for school
7:15- Start school and work for classes- stress about doing well in class so that I can do well on my tests and quizzes so that I don’t get in trouble and can get good grades for colleges
2:45- Finish my school day and head straight to work
3:00-6:00- work so that I can pay for college
6:00- head straight home or to practice for my sport
7:30- finish my exercising and head home to shower
7:30-9- shower, get ready for bed, eat dinner, and complete all of my homework
9:15-9:30- Journal, do Yoga or meditate before I fall asleep
Now, to you, this may seem casual, but I always wondered why I constantly felt overwhelmed, stressed, and under so much pressure. Part of this is because, during my day, I never take a second to breathe or relax. Throughout my senior year, I have found the importance of breathwork, meditation, journaling, and yoga, and that all of these things are so beneficial to my mental health and anxiety.
Yoga, in particular, helps your body release so much stress from the day, especially before bed. In order to live a happy and healthy life, your body needs to stay active, but when it is going and going all day long, it burns out, which can make you nervous, scared, stressed, and unmotivated. Throughout my awakening with mindfulness, I have realized that not only can it open your eyes to a different perspective and state of mind, but motivate you to continue to do things for yourself and take care of yourself. With all of the expectations from ones around you, it is just as important to have some for yourself in order to deal with your mental health and emotions.