Ways to reduce stress


Sarah Lozier ‘20, Copy Editor

So finals just passed. And with finals come piles of notes, study guides on study guides, and… stress. So, what is stress? “Stress is a natural bodily response to frightening or threatening life events,” according to a Washington Post article about chronic stress and the effects of it on children. Stress can increase your heart rate, blood pressure, and blood circulation.

According to Gallup, 55 percent of Americans are stressed during the day, regardless of age.

“I deal with too much stress,” says Mrs. Grimm, English and Creative Writing teacher.

Junior Emily Ayres stated, “[I deal with] way too much stress, I get stressed over the smallest things… There’s almost never a week where I’m not stressed.”

Stress can cause annoyance, loneliness or depression, feelings of overwhelment, headaches, clammy hands, rapid heartbeat, nervous behaviors such as nail biting or fidgeting, and trouble concentrating; 59 percent of teens also say balancing all their activities can cause stress.

So, basically the whole world is full of stress. Stress follows us at home, work, or school. What can we do about it?

“I think about what stresses me and fix it,” Grimm said.

Ayres says she “mostly listens to music and overthinks the situation until [she] forms it into something good. It usually goes away after whatever [she is] stressed about passes.”

There’s been an abundance of self-care apps directed to dealing with stress. The most popular are coloring apps like Sandbox Pixel Coloring and Paint By Number: Coloring Book (I personally like Happy Color). There are countless mental health games. Breethe, Meditation, & Sleep is an app the helps users “de-stress, sleep better, get happier, and be healthier with guided meditations, soothing music, nature sounds, masterclasses, and much more.”

There’s even a “Smash the Office” game, whose tagline is “Instant Stress Relief!”

Another app, Calm, is a #1 app for “Sleep, Meditation and Relaxation. Join the millions experiencing better sleep, lower stress, and less anxiety with our guided meditations, sleep stories, breathing programs, stretching exercises, and relaxing music.”

Ayres uses an app called Vent-Express your feelings. “It’s pretty self explanatory,” she explains. “It’s a very safe community of people who go through similar issues and whom you can relate to. Talking to friends helps a lot more than a bunch of strangers, but sometimes it’s nice to talk to someone who isn’t biased and doesn’t know you.”