Isabelle Reuter: Stress relief strategies for going back to school

Published 3:57 pm Tuesday, September 5, 2023

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The back-to-school season can be both exciting and stressful for students of all ages. Whether you’re a student returning to the classroom or a parent navigating the challenges of school preparation, managing stress is crucial for a successful start to the academic year. Here are some effective stress relief strategies to help you transition smoothly into the back-to-school routine.

• Regular Exercise: Physical activity is a powerful stress buster. It releases endorphins, the body’s natural stress relievers. Incorporating even a short daily workout into your routine can make a significant difference.

• Proper Nutrition: A well-balanced diet provides your body with the nutrients it needs to combat stress. Avoid excessive caffeine, sugar, and processed foods, which can increase stress, and opt for a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

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• Adequate Sleep: Sleep is the body’s natural recovery mechanism. Prioritize a consistent sleep schedule and create a comfortable sleeping environment to ensure you get enough rest.

• Time Management: Effective time management can reduce stress caused by feeling overwhelmed. Use techniques like prioritization, to-do lists, and time blocking to organize your tasks and maintain a sense of control.

• Breathing Exercises: Deep, mindful breathing can help calm your nervous system. Try techniques like the 4-7-8 breathing method to reduce stress in the moment.

• Limit Technology: Constant digital connectivity can lead to chronic stress. Dedicate technology-free time daily, such as during meals or before bedtime, to disconnect and unwind.

•Yoga: Mind-body practices combine physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation. They promote relaxation, reduce stress, and improve flexibility and strength.

Remember, stress is a natural part of life, especially during transitional periods like going back to school. By implementing these stress relief strategies, students and parents alike can navigate the challenges of the school year with greater ease, ensuring a smoother transition and a more enjoyable educational experience. Here’s what’s new and happening at the Y in September:

• Free Youth/Teen Center Grade 5 – 12. Supervised space for kids 10 and older. Activities include Art Club, Book Club, Soccer Club and access to the Wood Gym. Free bussing from IJ/Ellis.

• Parent Night Out, Sept. 15 and Nov. 17, 5-8 p.m. Treat yourself to an evening out while your kids enjoy games, food, crafts, and fitness activities in a safe, healthy environment. Pizza and snacks provided.

• Safe Sitter Grade 6-8, Sept. 16-17. Safe Sitter prepares students in grades 6-8 to be safe when they’re home alone, watching younger siblings, or babysitting.

• Tiny Tikes Flag Football Age 3-5, Wednesdays Sept. 13 to Oct. 4. Your toddler will burn plenty of energy and have fun in our Tiny Tikes classes.

• Swimming Lessons. For all Ages, our lessons are designed to help your swimmer overcome fears, build confidence in the water, and develop skills that will last a lifetime.