I didn’t really get to write as much as I wanted to over the past few weeks, as I had a huge amount of work to complete for school. The last year of high school is just so much pressure. Maybe you can relate, however old you are or wherever you are reading this in the world.
Last week, my school organised an event where guest speakers talked about mindfulness and about managing stress & anxiety. I found their presentations so helpful, as I am a person who literally feels stressed almost every single day, where this is created from constant overthinking and perfectionism. The overthinking and the worrying then develop into anxiety – so a loop is created where I’d feel down and miserable and find it hard to feel uplifted and optimistic again. The presentation I attended talked through different processes which could control and minimise stress and anxiety, and so I’d like to share my thoughts about what I’ve learned from it, and how my attitude towards things changed (where I finally started to worry much less about everything!!).
Talking to people about your worries
Honestly, speaking from experience, DON’T worry whether others want to listen to you or your worries. The right people WILL want to listen and help you out, that’s why they are your friends and/or family. Anyone will most probably take their time and talk to you if you tell them it’s important to you. The best is to talk with a close friend or family member and this is because they already know you and can therefore help you best.
The meaning of mindfulness and relaxation
The main idea of mindfulness is to live in the moment. Yes, at first, this sounds surreal. Aren’t we already living-in-the-moment? We are not, actually! Living in the moment means forgetting (or putting aside) things that happened yesterday, and things that are to come tomorrow. Even the things that are going to happen, to our knowledge, in the next few hours! Anxiety doesn’t have to come from negative thoughts. It can pretty much burden you from constantly thinking about anything, so simultaneously, you are not thinking about, or living, in the present. If you decide to meet up with a friend, do it! And this sounds silly, but don’t think about your work/school assignment or presentation that takes place tomorrow.. just be in the present and enjoy the moment with your friend. When you make yourself a meal, taste every ingredient when you eat. Pay attention to smaller details, to which you wouldn’t have necessarily thought about before. From personal experience, I usually watch a video or read something else whilst I eat. Though this may be entertaining, I am not focusing on what I’m eating at all. Lastly, if you do keep on feeling anxious, restless… take a break from what you’re doing! Sit down, or even lie down if you can and relax for 5 minutes. Take a deep breath in, and then out. Repeat this several times until you feel more relaxed. Don’t let anyone disturb you, or talk to you, or distract you. It is 5 minutes of your whole day, so everyone should understand and you shouldn’t worry either, as you have the WHOLE day to finish off what you needed to do. Make your mental health the priority. If you are stressed or anxious, it is likely that you won’t be able to complete any tasks to your full potential anyways.
Looking for threads online where people share how they positively deal with stress
Googling answers to specific questions can sometimes be surprising, helpful, and sometimes it can also give so many responses that you start stressing even more, especially if they’re negative. When I was dealing with anxiety a lot, I googled tips on how to minimise this. I also looked for tips on how to stop overthinking. Here are some useful links, but there are a ton more out there:
In my opinion, the best thing to do is to keep yourself occupied. Make sure you have a hobby, that you’re active and that you have close people who you can talk to. If you have any questions or would like to add something, please do write it in the comments below.
Have a happy week and find some time to relax! It’s just as important as working hard. 😀