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Tips to Beat Back-to-School Stress

As we settle into fall and go back to school and programs, it can be an exciting and stressful time. Here are a few tips from the Harlem Children’s Zone Emotional Wellness team on how to beat back-to-school stress.

  1. Move around: Take five minutes every hour to shift your body, stretch, stand, walk, or anything that feels good. Try using a fitness app to track your progress.
  2. Elevate your feet: When sitting, place your feet on a sturdy box, step stool, or other elevated platform 3 or more inches tall. This helps increase blood flow and removes pressure from sitting all day. Your back and hips will thank you!
  3. Create a well working space: Put on your favorite playlist, use some essential oils, or decorate your space with photos — anything to promote productivity and tranquility in your space.
  4. Take a well-being break: Reserve part of your lunch hour for an activity that improves your well-being, such as reading your favorite book, sitting in the park for lunch, or taking a walk.
  5. Catch your breath: We often shallow breathe, which is heightened by increased stress or worry. Add simple breathing exercises to calm your nervous system, including 4-7-8 breath, lion’s breath, or alternate nostril breathing.

We may not be able to eliminate all our back to school stress, but we can acknowledge and use strategies to manage it. And remember, the Emotional Wellness Team is here for resources and support if you need it!