Why Am I Struggling and What Should I Do?
The teenage years are no joke. Some days may feel rewarding or exciting, but other days can feel impossible to get through. If you find yourself struggling to navigate teenage life, you are not alone. By educating yourself on what is going on during these formative years, you can feel reassured and cared for by those around you.
Hormones and Puberty
From the ages of 12–18, everyone is going through significant changes developmentally. Everyone is changing at different rates physically and mentally. If your emotions range significantly from sadness to anger throughout the day, your hormones may be affecting the way you feel. Don’t be afraid to talk with your parents if you need to.
If your mood persists, go to the doctor with your parents to see what you can do to mitigate excessive mood swings. You may have a form of mental illness that is impacting your mood more significantly.
You will likely face excessive amounts of pressure during your teenage years. After all, you have to deal with friend drama, schoolwork, extracurricular activities, and home responsibilities. Feeling overwhelmed is one thing, but if you are experiencing multiple symptoms of mental illness, you need to get help.
Going to a therapist is a perfectly acceptable thing for someone with excessive stress to do. Therapists can help you prioritize your work, give you fresh perspectives, and give you healthy dietary advice. This will help you mentally compartmentalize your challenges and give you strength to tackle them in the future. Being stressed is to be expected, but learning to handle it will up you in life.
Not Enough Sleep
It doesn’t help that teenagers have a very erratic sleeping schedule. While most people want to go to sleep from 10-–1p.m., teenagers tend to stay up later than that. This can contribute to mood swings and make you feel fatigued throughout the day. You should be aiming to get 8–9 hours of sleep a night.
Avoid caffeinated beverages and energy drinks past noon to make sure it doesn’t disrupt your sleep. Consider “powering down” a couple hours before you head to bed. This entails avoiding electronics, and doing an activity that will gradually make you tired (like math homework).
There are many reasons why you may find yourself in a tight spot. Don’t worry, there are always solutions. You may feel a little lost and anxious about your different responsibilities, but reaching out to your family and professionals can help you brave the storm of teenage life.
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