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How to Manage Stress: Best Practices, Tips, and Tricks

Teen manages stress

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During this time of year, it is normal and common to feel an increased level of stress. 

Some things that can contribute to this include the holidays, finals at school, deadlines at work, and traveling to see family. While a low level of stress can be healthy to accomplish tasks, projects, and assignments, high levels of stress can be detrimental to one’s physical and mental health.

Here are some healthy, maintainable ways to manage stress during this time of year.

1. Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including those on social media

While staying in the loop about current events and new stories can be a good thing, constantly listening to traumatic, intense events can be upsetting and cause more stress. 

It would be wise to limit listening or reading the news to once or twice a day on your television, computer, or smartphone. 

2. Take care of your physical health

Eat healthy, exercise, get plenty of sleep, and give yourself a break if you feel stressed out. Take care of your body by stretching, taking deep breaths, and meditating. Try to eat well-balanced, nutritious foods three times a day. If you can, exercise regularly. Exercise can include activities such as running, walking, biking, yoga, pilates, and stretching. 

While the regular movement is important, listening to your body and not overdoing it is critical. 

Children, teens, and young adults should be getting 8 hours of sleep per night. While exercise can help us destress, rest and sleep are equally important! Lastly, try to avoid excessive amounts of alcohol, tobacco, and other substances. 

3. Make time to unwind

Try to do some other activities you enjoy. It is okay to take breaks from work, school, and other stressful activities. 

Whether you like to read, craft, exercise, or clean, try to set time aside each day to unwind. 

4. Talk to others

Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling. Connecting with those who you are close to can bring joy as well as a shared sense of belonging. 

Talking with someone you trust can help you make sense out of your experience. Communicate your problems and how you are feeling and coping with a parent, friend, therapist, or doctor.

Remember that taking care of yourself can better equip you to take care of others! For more information and resources, please visit us at or email for free therapy sessions through BetterHelp.




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