Article: I'm Stressed!

By | February 20, 2010

Chicago Now – Outside the Girl Box

Flying up the stairs to my room, I shut the door, put my favorite Hanson CD into my stereo and turn the volume way up. (Hanson was kind of like the Jonas Brothers when I was 12. I admittedly still love them.) Flipping to track two, “MMMBop,” already makes me start to feel a little bit better. Maybe I dance. Maybe I throw my pillow at the floor over and over again. Maybe I hug my pillow close, and even cry a little bit. But somehow, as the song comes to an end, I feel better.

This was a pretty typical scene for me when I was a tween. And, okay, I’ll admit it. I still turn Hanson up really loud and dance around my house, or sing really loud in my car. Why? Because they are my favorite band. Hearing their songs reminds me of spending time with close friends, seeing them in concert, even my wedding day! All of those happy thoughts help me to push out stress, sadness, or worry.

You probably get stressed sometimes for all kinds of reasons. Lots of girls (and boys, too!) your age worry about friends, school work, family problems, sports and activities, and more. The problem is that if you just keep that stress bottled up inside, it can lead to even more stress! Scientists have found out that if we stay stressed for long periods of time, our brain makes chemicals that make it harder to learn new things or pay attention in school. If you’re already worried or stressed about something, having a hard time at school certainly won’t help.

So how can you get rid of that stress? Sometimes, you can’t control the situation that is causing you stress. You can always control how you respond to it. The key is to find things that help you unwind or calm down. Everyone is different, and everyone has different ways to relieve stress. Check out the photo gallery below to see how other tweens get rid of theirs. Try out a few, and you’ll be on your way to finding the one that works best for you.