As many students are getting ready to finish their last term of primary school awaiting high school, the excitement about making new friends, having new teachers and ventures is often overshadowed by anxiety and stress.
The unfamiliar environment, the changes to friendship groups and the hormonal changes that coincide with puberty and drive physical, emotional and cognitive growth, as well as the new expectations put on young people can be overwhelming.
Thankfully, there are steps young people can take to ease the transition from year 6 – 7:
- Find out if you know anyone going to the same school and buddy up
- Take a trip to the school and familiarise yourself
- Try to stay positive and calm about your first day
- Have a good support network for when things get stressful
- Organise your books, stationery, uniforms, backpack and anything else you’ll need
- Find out where to go or who you can ask when you need help
- Get enough sleep and try to start school well rested
If you or someone you know is still struggling with the stress and anxiety of starting high school, practicing these self-care techniques can help relax the mind and body to refocus:
- Talking with someone you trust, whether that's your friends, family or even your family doctor
- Letting your emotions out physically by going for a walk or squeezing a stress ball
- Finding a creative way to express your feelings – drawing / painting / journaling
- Engaging in deep breathing, meditation, mindfulness or muscle relaxation
- Comforting yourself by cuddling a pet, having a bath or listening to your favourite music