Coping With Challenges
It is important to understand that some stress is good. The stress response can prepare us to face challenges and keeps us on our toes. The physical, emotional and mental changes that take place during these formative years directly impact the teenage view of life situations leading to insecurity, confusion and fear.
When faced with the unique challenges of teen life, it is essential that teenagers make wise choices with regard to stress relief. Stress is cited as the leading causes of teen substance abuse, using drugs and alochol to provide a temporary escape from the pressure. Some teens cope with stress by sleeping in excess. Others choose to not deal with it all allowing fear and axiety to build up to its boiling point.
The key is to cope with stress in healthy ways. Teens are better equipped to handle stress when they get the right amount of sleep – about 10 hours per day and eat high energy foods like whole grain fiber, protein, and dairy. Regular exercise keeps the mind sharp and the body fit to handle crisis situations. Exercise also provides an outlet for pent up energy and can relieve tension.
Using strategic planning methodology to identify the root cause of an issue, create a plan to address the issue and set a timeline for improvement provides teens with a sense of control. Finally, teens need a solid support structure. They need people in their lives that listen to them, encourage them, and empathize rather than dismiss their feelings.