School stress always hit its max for child me in mid-November. That’s when I was hitting hard content and getting way too excited for the holidays. Even when I was a worry-free kid, this time of year could be a little much to handle. I’m still not exactly a stress guru, but here are three things I learned over the years that helped me manage my school stress, for K-12 through college.

1. Focus on what needs to get done right now, not the mountain of school stress.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed if you think of all the projects you have due in every class you have. You can sit down forever and write a seemingly endless list of stressful tasks to finish. But that’s not going to be very productive. Instead, focus your energy on the things you need to do right now. Pick one or two items that really need your attention, and focus all your energy into completing those. You’ll find that instead of getting discouraged, every small task you finish will pump you up.

2. Don’t stress doing things perfectly.

It’s good to care about your grades and want to do well in school. But often, focusing too much on doing things perfectly just makes school more stressful than it needs to be. For papers, forcing out a messy rough draft, then editing it, will take a lot less time than waiting for perfect sentences to come into your head. For math assignments, skipping the hardest problems, then coming back, will keep you from getting burnt out with ten problems left to go. Putting a pin in a difficult subject helps you make the most effective use of your time, thereby eliminating stress.

3. Schedule time to relax and de-stress.

When we get busy, we’ll sometimes challenge ourselves not to take breaks until we’ve hit a milestone. This might motivate you to focus in the short-term. But in the long-term, you’re going to burn out and lose your effectiveness if you don’t rest. And unfortunately, unscheduled breaks usually just turn into YouTube binges or unhealthy snack runs that don’t actually make you feel any more refreshed. If you schedule well-earned time to do something you enjoy, you’ll find your focus time becomes more productive.

Looking for a place to relax and de-stress? Whether you’re a kid in school or a parent in school, Coconut Cove is the place for you! For kids we have slides, ball cannons, trampolines, and indoor obstacle courses. For adults, we have massage chairs and free WiFi. You can book a birthday party or just play and hang out. Come enjoy Utah’s best indoor playground!