Tips on Facing Back-to-School Anxiety

"Just do the best you can and get to know yourself as young as you can"

It's that time of the year again! Kids are going back to school and it can be a time filled with excitement and optimism. But for some, it can be a time when anxiety increases because of the uncertainty of a new school year. 

Mental health advocate and motivational Tedx speaker Megan Gallagher, shared her strategies for parents and teens on how to manage anxiety going into a new school year. 

Establish a routine
Adding healthy hobbies into your schedule can be a great way to relax and alleviate anxiety. Activities like journaling, exercising and meditating can all be used as ways to manage anxiety. Galloway said to stay clear of your phone when facing anxiety, especially early in the morning. "When you wake up don't jump on your phone and go on email or Instagram," said Gallagher. "Take a moment to check in with yourself." 

Spend time finding yourself
Being a teenager can be a challenging time in life with pressures from school, friends and even family. Finding who you are and what makes you happy can increase your confidence. Surrounding yourself with positive influences can increase your confidence in yourself, leading to less anxiety and a greater understanding of yourself. Having a greater understanding of yourself at a young age can lead to better anxiety management throughout the rest of your life. "When you're a teenager it's such a pivotal age in your life and it can really shape you as an adult," Gallagher said. "Just do the best you can and get to know yourself as young as you can."

Be honest with others
Talking about your anxiety with people you trust can be one of the best things you can do. By sharing your anxiety, people can help you find more strategies to cope with your anxiety which can help you further down the road. Gallagher shared her personal experience with anxiety with her parents and it made a huge difference. "It took a leap of faith and sitting my parents down and having that conversation of 'I think i need some extra help,'" Gallagher said. "It was scary and my hands were shaking. But it paid off so much in the long run." 

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