Teens Surviving a Covid-19 Summertime.
Written by Sommer F.
Contribution Article - June 8th 2020
Throughout the past three months, life has been stressful for everyone. Life has been different for teens. Schools have been closed, and people have been isolated from everyone. Their social lives have been put on pause. Adolescence is a time when creating relationships, and being social is crucial. Although there may be other ways to socialize by texting and being on social media, face to face contact is a necessary form of communication that teens need. Yet, due to Covid-19, teens and everyone else have not been able to use that form of communication. This is stressful for today's teens. Teenagers also may see their parents stressed out about their job situation or their money situations. This can cause distress among teenagers. People have no clue what is going to happen; next, no one does. The fear of not knowing what is going to happen next can also be extremely stressful. Although it may feel like all hope is lost and the stress is overwhelming, there are many ways that today's teens can cope with the everyday stress that COVID-19 has caused.
Here are 10 ways a teen can cope in a Covid-19 world.
- Journal: Journaling helps you take control of your emotions and enables you to understand what you are feeling. It may help you recognize your negative and positive feelings and separate them. Have one journal, maybe two! In one write about happy, positive things, in the other, you may write about not such pleasant things. This may help you separate your feelings. Let your emotions and feelings guide your writing!
- Listen to music: Although it may seem silly, listening to a relaxing playlist of songs may help you calm down. If things get overwhelming, put in some headphones and sit back and relax.
- Exercise: Exercising produces endorphins, those endorphins act as the brain's natural painkiller. Doing aerobic exercises has an anti-anxiety effect. Some examples of aerobic exercises are; Swimming, dancing, and running
- Go outside and go on a short walk: It is scientifically proven that people in a green environment have lower cortisol levels, the hormone that produces stress. Taking five-ten minutes to step outside and enjoy the sun and breath in the fresh air can reduce your stress levels.
- Take a "me" day: take a day or even a couple of hours to yourself. Relax, watch your favorite movies, or read a book. Do something that you enjoy!
- Have some friend time: Although because of Covid-19 it may not be easy to hang out with friends, there are many things you can still do. You can call them on the phone or video chat them. Have a blast ad hangout. Feel free to vent as well!
- Get your humor on!: Laughter is the best medicine. When you laugh, your body relaxes and releases feel-good endorphins. So watch a funny video or have someone tell you a funny joke and laugh away!!
- Meditate: Meditation can help you relax. It is a way to take a vacation for a little bit. Try following these short, simple steps for meditation; Find a quiet space where you are alone, get in a comfortable position, close your eyes, and then imagine a place where you are delighted and calm. Take deep breaths throughout the process and let your imagination guide you. Once you're done, just open your eyes and breathe in and out. The best part about meditation is you can do it anytime you want.
- Cry: Crying is an excellent way to let out all of your emotions. People may try and stop you from crying. Yet, crying is a good thing. It is okay to cry. Just let it all out.
- Talk to someone or vent: Venting and talking about your feelings may be hard, but it is useful. Let others know how you are feeling. Use your "I" statements, "I feel upset because…". Don't hold back on anything that you are feeling! Let it out, and you will start to feel some relief.
All of these are effective ways for teens to deal with stress. Most importantly, the number one thing that teens need to know is that it's okay to feel. It is okay to feel upset and stressed. You are not a terrible person if you cry or let out your feelings. You are human. Humans have feelings and emotions. It is normal to be stressed in times like these!