How to cope with new term nerves

For many of us, September is the beginning of a new chapter. Whether you’re going back to school, starting college or sixth form, or even moving to university – September involves a lot of change and new beginnings. While you may find this change exciting, it’s very normal to also feel nervous, stressed or anxious.

It’s likely that you experienced lots of change over the last academic year due to Covid-19 restrictions: for example, having to stay in your school bubble, or having all your lectures and seminars online. And so you may also be feeling nervous about how this autumn term will be different to last term, or nervous about the thought of there being less restrictions in place.

At Teenage Helpline, we are here to support you, no matter how you’re feeling about the new term. Below, we’ve listed some of our favourite tips and resources to help you with any new term nerves.

  • Make sure you check in with how you’re feeling. Write down all your thoughts about the new term – both what you’re excited about, and what you’re feeling nervous about. It may help to discuss this list with someone you trust, such as a friend or a parent, who may be able to support you with any worries you’re having.
  • Mindfulness and meditation can help you to better understand your own thoughts and emotions, and can help you to let go of negative thoughts and emotions more easily. Unsure of how to get started? Calm and Headspace both provide free guided meditations!
  • It’s vital to practice self-care. Self-care looks different for everyone, but there are some steps that we can all take to look after our wellbeing – such as getting a good night’s sleep, checking in with loved ones, and getting outside. Taking the time to exercise can also improve our mood and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Experts suggest that any form of exercise can help to boost positive emotions – so why not get creative?
  • Are you feeling nervous about going back to school with less Covid-19 restrictions in place? Our going back to school’ resource provides some tips to help you settle back into in-person lessons.
  • If you’re starting sixth-form or university, you might be spending much more time studying independently this year. Our home-schooling resources are designed to help you to study independently, whether through choice or due to other circumstances (such as self-isolation or study leave). These resources also include tools to help you if you’re moving to university for the first time – such as tips on managing finances and seeking support from your lecturers.

We hope that these tips and resources help to prepare you for the new term. But if you’re still feeling anxious, or want to talk to someone about how you’re feeling, our mentors are always here for you.

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