Emma Conerly – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- As exam season approaches and the school year ends, it can be a stressful time for Mustangs.

Although stress can seem overwhelming at times, there are numerous ways to combat it.

One of the easiest ways is exercise.  Exercise causes the brain to produce endorphins, which improves one’s mood.

Scientificamerican.com reported that, “The antidepressant effect of running is also associated with more cell growth in the hippocampus, an area of the brain responsible for learning and memory. Thus, suppression of cell proliferation in the hippocampus could prove how physical activity might be an efficient antidepressant.”

Meditation can also help lower anxiety and clear one’s head.

Brainfacts.org stated, “After only two to four weeks of meditation there are significant changes to the major node of attention in the brain.  Those changes are linked to improved attention in different tasks, and it helps us understand why meditation can help improve mood and reduce anxiety.”

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LRHS senior Lora Brassfield said, “I use meditation to relax because it provides me with an opportunity to step back from your problems and introspect.”

There are many free guided meditation apps such as Headspace and Calm, in addition to guided and instructional meditations on YouTube.

Lastly, writing in a journal is another simple and inexpensive way to relieve stress.

Michigan State University said, “Journaling is one of the best ways to clear your mind and get in touch with your thoughts and feelings. It forces you to focus on your internal awareness of the present and process your experiences.”

In times of stress, it is important for Mustangs to take care of themselves for their health and well-being.