Taking care of yourself keeps your mind and body primed and ready to deal with stressful situations.

Taking care of yourself can mean anything from paying attention to your own needs and feelings to helping others whose problems are more serious than yours.  It can mean finding the will to live well, engaging in activities that you enjoy and experience as relaxing.  It can mean slowing down and doing nothing at all for awhile.

Every one of us faces times of anxiety, stress and pain. These suggestions are ideas for ways to help you get through the tough times. Taking these small steps can help reduce even normal levels of stress that come with life as a young person. They won't help everybody all the time, but even a little can make a difference.

Busy? Find time for fun.

Childhood is supposed to be about play, right? Our full lives can feel so busy that we sometimes don't allow time for the fun stuff. Its no mistake that health and happiness are often linked. We are healthier when we are happy!

Helping Others Helps You Too

You lug your elderly neighbor's groceries up her steps, and you know it's a good deal for her, right? What might surprise you is that it's likely good for you too.
People who regularly help other people experience less depression, manage stress better, and have better health. They may even live longer! Research says;
  • Students who performed five acts of kindness a day increased their happiness
  • Providing emotional support to others significantly decreased the harmful health effects of certain kinds of stress among older people
  • People who donated money to charity got a boost in a feel-good part of the brain, as revealed in brain imaging research
Doing good can make you feel good. It might;
  • remind you that compared to some you're relatively lucky
  • make you feel connected to others
  • help you feel needed and effective
  • take your mind off your own worries for a while
  • make you feel generous
  • add a sense of purpose and meaning to your life

Put a Little Lift in Your Step

Our species' ability to sense danger may have kept us alive, but our worry-filled thoughts can present dangers of their own. It is proven that negative thinking can drag down our moods, our actions and even our health. The opposite is also research supported: that positive thoughts make us happier and healthier. Try it!

Research about the benefits of staying positive says:

  • People who are pessimistic on average die younger than those who are optimistic.
  • People who express gratitude are generally more upbeat and have fewer physical complaints.
  • People who demonstrated negative thinking are less likely to change their unhealthy patterns.
  • People who dwell on negative thoughts actually change their brain activity and patterns to reinforce negative behaviors.
  • People who fixated on worrisome thoughts before a test performed worse than those who had a positive outlook on their task.

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