Stress Management Techniques for Students

ideal school environment

Student life is not easy and full of stress points that can lead to serious implications if not proactively taken care of. A child is born and made comfortable in the protected environs at home, with parents and family. The parents and family have the child’s best interest in mind. They are protective of the child and the child trusts them. The school is introduced as an alien surrounded by other individuals, classmates, and teachers. These surroundings take the children out of their comfort zone. This is the initiation of stress. However, this is just the beginning. What follows is a series of pressure points in the form of tests, quizzes, assignments, examinations, competitions, etc where children are expected to constantly compete against each other and try to outcompete their peers. Not just peers, children also need to try and impress their teachers so that they remain in their good books. The final frontier of stress is the marks and ranks. Each child is unique, but schools tend to line them up based on a scale, give them marks, and rank them in some order which is supposed to decide who succeeds in life and who doesn’t.

The stressful picture presented above is true for most schools, except for small schools that follow practices to lower the stress level in everyday student life. In this article, we talk about some stress management techniques for students and how to choose a good school that follows such techniques to reduce student stress.

Stress Management Techniques

Destressing Environment

The environment and the “feel’ of the school should be free of any stress. Children should not shudder simply at the thought of going to school. If it is so, you need to relook at the school environment as a whole. The school environment is constituted by various components such as the teachers, rules, schedules, management, infrastructure, curricular and extracurricular activities, and even the fee that is being charged. Discipline is important, but too much of anything is harmful. Ideal schools follow the mantra of purposeful discipline which reduces student stress. Do not punish them for every small mistake they make. Use innovative and fun ways of “punishing” the errant kids. Avoid any form of physical or mental harassment as punishment. Insulting or mocking kids in front of the entire class can be damaging to a child’s mental health.

Schedules and Workloads

Ideal schools make student life fun and devoid of any stress. Tight and hectic schedules are one of the key contributors to stress. There should be sufficient breaks in between classes. Moving from one class to another without any breathing time could be stressful. Heavy workloads, excessive assignments, homework, and aggressive deadlines could be extremely stressful for children. Ideal schools take great care to design their class schedules and workloads. They build flexibility in the schedule which provides a sense of control to the students. Good schools allow children the freedom to choose between attending a class or working on a live project. Good schools allow children the flexibility to choose the subjects they want to study and the activities they want to participate in. Giving choices to students could be a great de-stressor for daily student life.

Reduce Competitiveness

Ideal schools reduce toxic competitiveness in student life. Excessive cutthroat competition frequently leads to student stress. The constant strive to outcompete your classmates, whether in academics, sports, or other cultural activities, leads to stress among students. High-quality schools remove this stress from student life by keeping individual student marks confidential, discouraging comparisons with peers, and focusing more on participation than the outcome.

Appreciate Uniqueness

Comparison with others on marks is one of the biggest sources of student stress in student life. Those who get more marks get bragging rights, and those who get fewer marks or fail to get stressed out. Not just the peers, but teachers, parents, and relatives, all start judging the child only based on the marks he/she scored in a few subjects in exams. Good schools appreciate that each student is unique and all students cannot be measured on the same benchmark. Some students are good in mathematics, some in English, some are good in art and craft, while others are good in sports, some have a talent for singing, and some in photography. Good schools identify and nurture these unique strengths and talents. This helps in building self-pride among children. They now have many other things to focus on, rather than just marks in a few subjects. This wider horizon of exposure and nurturing that good schools can provide goes a long way in reducing stress from student life.

Empathetic Educators

Educators or teachers play a major role in achieving a low-stress daily student life. Teachers should be empathetic to the children. They should listen to their students and understand their challenges, issues, and their state of mind. Ideal schools have trained educators who can sense stress in their classes and possess the knowledge of stress management techniques for students. Teachers in an ideal school would give individual and personalised attention to students; show love and care to their students. They will teach stress management techniques for students and how to handle and manage their emotions.

Mental Wellness Programs

Organising mental wellness activities and programs is one of the most fruitful stress management techniques for students. Good schools organise daily activities such as meditation and yoga and engage students in de-stressing activities such as sports and extracurricular activities. Good schools also have a trained and qualified professional psychologist always available on campus for students to freely walk in for any consultation. Good schools create processes by which they allow their students to voice their concerns and express their emotions. Good schools also engage parents actively in the process of reducing student stress from daily student life.

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