Mindfulness: Does it Help?


Madi Chute, Writer

Life for most teenagers gets harder and harder to manage each day. With school, work, extracurriculars, and maintaining a social life, it can all pile up. Most teenagers are under major stress.

Due to this stress, teens are finding it hard to balance all the activities they are participating in. This situation can result in teens not having time to find a healthy way to manage their stress.

According to USA Today, over 50% of teens are dealing with a moderate to extreme amount of stress, as indicated in the chart below:

However, there are many healthy ways that teenagers can deal with stress, including mindfulness and yoga. Mindfulness is a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings. Many teens find this helpful to keep their stress levels low.

Due to mindfulness, if one meditates before an exam, they perform better than a student who does not; also, meditation can help with anxiety, stress, and depression. Too many of us know teenagers who are dealing with each of these situations today.

Meditation does not have to be a long lengthy activity. It also does not have to be “linked” to spirituality which can put some people outside their comfort zone. Even for as low as five minutes a day, teenagers, and actually people of all ages can meditate to help reduce their stress levels. They can learn how their brains work can work most effectively by taking a moment to breathe when a person is distracted by sadness, frustration or anxiety.

Another way to practice mindfulness is through yoga. A person can choose to participate in a yoga class or even do use yoga practices independently, possibly with online tutorial. Channeling stress into something such as yoga, even as little as once a week, can help to manage their stress in a healthy manner, and be more calm, happy and productive.

Overall, teens need to find healthier ways to deal with stress. This could come from many unhealthy habits, but yoga and mindfulness are a helpful strategy to support the brain, keep stress levels low, and lead more of teenages who will grow into the adults in our society, to be productive, healthy and happy.