Teenagers or young adults are often told that “this is the best time of your life” The age where you are young and free, you have the ability, as well as the energy to innovate and do new things. We also see in the movies, where a group of teenagers with high levels of excitement and enthusiasm, smiling and laughing amongst each other. They do indeed look very content and happy, almost like they are enjoying their life to the fullest. But, we are only looking into the surface of the situation, by taking a deeper look we will realize that the modern teenage stress levels are alarmingly high. This can be repercussion of being somewhere between a kid and an adult, the time when the vision of life is very unclear, and life puts you in challenging situations that can sometimes put you in a state of confusion and an extreme drift of emotions.
Dr Sanjay Prem, a corporate trainer and a motivational speaker, has dealt with and understood what modern-day teenagers think, how they react, and what they are looking for. His motive is to save the young generation from being carried away with sentiments, and face the challenges and changes of life, in a more mature and sensible way. To enlighten people with more knowledge and awareness, he lists down 10 common causes of teenage stress.
Common causes and Signs of Stress in teens
- The threat of the inability to perform in school
- The threat of the inability of making friends
- The pressure of fitting-in and still being oneself
- Peer pressure
- Frequent changes in school/house or environment
- Arguments between parents
- Lack or instability in social relationships (boyfriend/ girlfriend/friends etc.)
- Poor sleeping habits
- Inability of managing time- having too much to do, feeling underprepared or overwhelmed
The 10 points mentioned above, are just some of the common causes of stress, on a larger note, stress triggers can vary from person to person. If you suspect that your child is undergoing stress, then you must be there for them as a mentor and a helping hand. Try to talk to them, and get to know the root cause of stress. Help them manage and overcome stress.
Signs of stress to look out for:
Stress affects every individual in a different way, hence, it is difficult to tell if the signs that your child is showing are of stress or just a phase of bad mood. It is very important to understand when the stress is to be taken seriously.
- Increased nervousness or anxiety
- Lack of sleep
- Change in eating patterns
- Trouble in Concentration
- A sudden drop in grades or performance
- Exhibiting extreme reactions or unstable emotions
These are some signs that should not be ignored, if you notice your child facing any of these problems, you should consider having a word with them. If the root problem is not identified, but the signs still persists, it is recommended to seek help from a professional counsellor who can prevent the situation from getting out of control. It is extremely unhealthy for a teenager to endure mental pressure for a prolonged period of time.
Understanding the concept of “Good Stress”
We have heard of the ill effects of stress, how it destroys a human’s mental capabilities. But, have you heard of “good Stress?” Good stress is also known as eustress. It is defined as the basic amount of motivation required to complete tasks. We have all been through times when a little bit of stress has forced us into doing something, and when you look back to it, you will realize that it was all for good. This is known as “good stress”.
A teenager or an adolescent may also face the good stress. And sometimes display emotions and signs mentioned above, but that does not mean that the person is necessarily stressed. There is a thin line between the two, and the teenager also has to be taught of this concept. It is important to make them aware about the fact that a little bit of stress will actually prove helpful to you.
Stress Management for teens and young adults
More than anything else, it is important for an adolescent to learn how to manage themselves under stressful circumstances. This is because stress is going to be a part of their life, and cannot be avoided, but the art is in handling it correctly, with a correct mindset.
- Engage in sports and physical activity
- Engage in hobbies and interests
- Read books/watch movies that are inspiring
- Get sound sleep
- Try meditation techniques like yoga
- Spend more time with people who make you happy
- Try to keep a positive outlook to life
- Involve your parents/teachers or friends when situation seems out of your control
- Don’t shy out of seeking help
- Have more self-confidence
- Don’t make decisions in haste or panic, let circumstances settle a little, and then think about your decision. This will prevent you from making any regrettable choices.
Stress is a part and parcel of our lives, but it should never turn into distress. That is where things go wrong and become more challenging. It is important to understand that friends, family and teachers make up a huge chunk of their lives, and are dependent on them. Therefore, it is essential that these people are influencing them in a positive manner, and that they have a freedom and the right environment at home and at school to be able to share and openly talk about their problems and emotions.