Smoke Signals

Quick and Easy Ways to Reduce Stress

Harley LeMaster, Illustrator

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From balancing three AP classes, all your school clubs, sports, and making sure you eat and sleep the high school world can get a little stressful. We have all been there where we feel like we are drowning with all that is going on in our lives, with no room to just breathe. However, everyone has ten minutes they can set aside to go through these quick and easy ways to reduce stress.

Stress is often caused when people are unorganized and have scattered thoughts. To help with this grab a pen and a notebook and start writing. It doesn’t have to be anything special. It could be a chart, bullet points anything to put your thoughts in front of you.

Though it isn’t the most popular option, exercise is one of the most helpful ways to reduce your stress. When you exercise it releases something from your body called “dopamine,” otherwise known as a happy chemical. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter in your brain that you need to be able to feel happy, and not stressed.

If your stress is causing you to have trouble staying alert and focused in class, try chewing gum. Studies have been done to prove that people who chew gum more often are less stressed and more alert than those who rarely chew gum. Be sure the gum is sugar free.

Speaking of which, living a healthier life style also helps reduce your stress. This may be the easiest way to help. It’s as simple as cutting down on caffeine, getting in your 64 ounces of water, and cutting out sugar to replace it with healthier options such as carrots. This is to give your body more energy to get your tasks done swiftly and most importantly stress free.

As crazy as it may sound, skipping a day of school work and practice is okay. There is no reason to keep going back to the thing stressing you out. Take a day or even just a few hours to do what you truly love. Spend time with your friends and family to make you laugh and feel refreshed. Take a couple hours to nap during your day, you’ll always feel better after you are well rested. Even just pick a comfy chair and your favorite book and take yourself somewhere else. Reading a book will help focus your brain on one thing.

This happens to the best of us when we get so swamped that we can’t handle it anymore. You’re a better you when you’re less stressed. Take some time to focus on yourself.

About the Writer
Harley LeMaster, Illustrator

Harley LeMaster is a Senior and second-year Smoke Signals member. She loves pigs, her favorite movie is Pirates of the Carribean, and she is a dancer...

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Quick and Easy Ways to Reduce Stress