I have just gone back to school, and the pressure has built back on me as I have come back into exams. It made me think about the holidays and how I totally forgot about the stress of school. I then realised that it was just about small things that made me happy that meant I wasn’t thinking of anything but the present. I thought about how important it is to incorporate everyday things that are going to make you smile. They are so great as they can really make your day, and they don’t require much effort at all. These are a few of the things I did during the Easter holidays that made me happy.
Visiting the park with my friends
The other day I was walking in the park with a lot of my friends on a bright sunny day, and I was very stressed at first because it was my last day of the Easter holidays and so I wasn’t ready to go back to school. However, once we started laughing and sunbathing, I felt so relaxed. I realised then that the sun, beautiful nature and people I loved was really such a great relief from how I had been feeling before. I noticed such a change by just taking everything in and really being aware of everything around me.
Doing yoga every week
As I have yoga during the week along with school, clubs and inevitable homework, I am generally quite stressed (not to mention exam week!). This means that everything is really busy for me, but in the small one hour of yoga I have, I can almost instantly feel that heavy burden of pressure lift off of me. It sounds like a cliché but when I come out of the sessions, I want to curl up and sleep because of how relaxed I feel. Honestly, when I started I had no idea of what it would be like, but now it is one of the highlights of my week!
Having a nice long sleep
When I can manage it, a good long sleep leaves me refreshed more than anything. I love waking up and being able to really get up and go, instead of being the moody, sleepy, grumpy, stereotypical teenager I can sometimes be. One of the best reasons I use to convince myself to get to bed early, is thinking of how good I’ll feel in the morning. It really sounds like an effort to try and get to bed early, to leave the technology and the books behind and to make your bed etc. But on the rare occasions that this happens, I know I have made the right decision at the end.
Completing a piece of long homework
If I’m honest, I hate homework. And even though I would ban it if I could, it is something that has to be done. When I get my homework done, it is another responsibility to check off of my list of things to do, and I know that I haven’t rushed it. It gives me more time to relax, and more time to find other things to do. More than anything, it will get my mind working, and maybe then means I can get even more work done afterwards. I am not saying that I always get tons of work done, but it is just a small thing that makes me quite happy.
Listening to a really good song
My favourite thing in the world is music, and I love finding a new song that I can listen to on loop and not get tired of it. It makes me want to get up and dance and really gives me almost like a caffeine effect. Good music can wake me up, get me in a good mood for the day ahead and get me in ‘the Zone’ for whatever tasks I have to complete for that particular day. Even if I feel tired, stressed or angry, my headphones along with my phone cure everything after 3 to 4 minutes of tunes.
I hope that maybe these things are moments you can relate to, or you maybe take some inspiration from these. It really is crucial to me to have a small but fulfilling list of these things that I know are going to make me smile that never fail. What makes you happy? Answer that question for yourself and use it on one of those days when you need a bit of sunshine. I hope you have a happy week!
By Francesca (age 13)
Teen Yoga Tribe