School and Stress

The summer holidays are over and its time to go back to school. A million children sigh as the inevitable becomes tomorrow. No more staying up late and getting up late. No more relaxed days under the warm sun and certainly no more hose pipes, shorts and tee-shirts. The young children are getting stressed over facing the unknown starting school for the first time, the older kids are wary of returning to the guarded friendships and bullying of the playground, while teenagers dread the regimented world where they have to buckle down to work and get the A grades. Then there is the parent’s to think about. No more late nights with early starts and no more lazy breakfasts and easy routines. There are uniforms to buy, wash and iron. New stationary, new bags, new shoes and new sports kit to get.   The school run is a nightmare for every parent across the nation. Deciding who takes the kids is enough to initiate divorce proceedings. The change of routine can be as stressful to the parents as for the children. More often then not the stress of the starting school brings out the anger in all the family, and soon the adults are acting like children and the whole house is in uproar. ‘It’s entirely normal to feel a degree of stress as the start of school approaches.’ experts would say.   What can you do about it? There are always tools and methods to help you through any kind of stressful situation. Mike Fisher from the British Association of Anger Management (BAAM) is an expert in stress...

Anger over Birmingham stabbing

It’s always a sad day when a young person passes away, but when the circumstances are completely preventable, it makes it all the more tragic. Yesterday, the UK awoke to the news that a 16-year-old girl had been stabbed to death on her bus journey to school. Rumoured to be a male friend of hers, the attacker stabbed the victim numerous times before calmly walking off the bus and running away. At the time of writing, one 22 year old man has been arrested and police have stated they are not looking for anyone else in conjunction with the murder. Anger is always a common side effect of murders like this, and it’s understandable that people become agitated and disgusted by certain behaviour. It’s important to remember that someone has lost their life, and whilst it’s easy to point fingers and blame society, sometimes it’s best just to let the matter drop and respect the deceased. Anger does need addressing in our society, and luckily there are lots of companies that offer anger management support and treatment services. The British Association Of Anger Management is the leader on providing anger management...

Teenage Stress & Anger

This morning I read a really interesting article about teenagers who react more aggressively to situations due to what they think of someone’s ability to change.  A recent study brought out from the University of Texas Austin shows that teenagers who don’t believe people have the ability to make conscious and willing changes to their behaviour are more likely to act aggressively in situations where their temper may be tested. The study also showed that teenagers can reduce their aggressive behaviour by learning that others around them are able to change, and this was written up in a report released in the last few days. We already know that teenagers who are raised in a hostile environment are more likely to develop anger problems, but this new study brings a totally new concept out into the open. The main finding of the survey was that some teenagers believe that people are either good or bad, and can’t be changed. Teens who think like this don’t tend to think of anyone as neutral, and it can take only a small incident to label someone as bad. For instance, in the study it was found that some of the teenagers became agitated and angry when they were simply bumped in the corridor whilst walking along at school.  Instead of rationally realising that it was an accident, they label the “offender” as evil and are convinced that they did it on purpose to cause harm and stress. With over 1600 8th-10th grade pupils present in the study, from a variety of different schools in both high and low income areas of the...

Self-Esteem

Self-Esteem is a topic that is discussed amongst young people and in schools, but it often goes un-noticed outside of these environments. Whilst government advisors, educators, mental health experts and psychologists all agree that self-esteem is extremely important to our wellbeing, it’s not something often talked about. Those with high self-esteem tend to be more motivated in day-to-day tasks, have the ability to handle criticism, are able to take responsibility for their actions, take pride in their achievements and take control of their lives. Whilst people with low self-esteem might also be able to carry out many of the feats listed above, studies show that people with high self-esteem will on average perform more effectively and be happier. One of the main issues surrounding Self-esteem is the negative stigma that is often portrayed. Many people believe that having low self-esteem means that you suffer from depression – in reality, this is far from the truth, and causes people to worry unnecessarily about their mental health. Provoking Environment Self-esteem is prominent amongst children, and youngsters that do not view themselves as “perfect”, may show signs of developing low self-esteem. In today’s society image is so important, and whether you agree with it or not, kids are trying to look like their idols. Whether this means fasting to lose weight, spending money to appear rich, getting tattoos and piercings to look cool – the signs of low self amongst teenagers are everywhere, and it’s a worrying trend that needs addressing. Individuals in an unhappy relationship may also experience feelings of low self-esteem. Feelings of worthlessness, guilt, shame, disgust, anger & disappointment...

This is based on an incredible story…

Before I read the story I thought it was impossible for such atrocious things to happen in the 21st Century. By now you are desperate to know what I am talking about. A journalist from the Tampa Bay Times, Lane DeGregory, published the incredible story of Dani. I would like to credit DeGregory for the article, and attribute it as the source of my information. Dani’s story is one of absolute heartbreak- and at the same time of incredible hope. This 9-year-old girl spent her formative years living in extreme neglect- so much so that she was described as a feral child. A feral child living in the 21st Century! This little girl was discovered: on a torn, mouldy mattress on the floor. She was curled on her side, long legs tucked into her emaciated chest. Her ribs and collarbone jutted out; one skinny arm was slung over her face; her black hair was matted, crawling with lice. Insect bites, rashes and sores pocked her skin. Though she looked old enough to be in school, she was naked – except for a swollen diaper. Dani was severely malnourished and incapable of looking after herself- she couldn’t even chew or swallow food. As time went on it became clear that Dani didn’t even know how to make a sound, she couldn’t speak! This is such a horrifying fact, and is testament to the appalling conditions in which she was brought up. The details of Dani’s recovery and how she has grown are extraordinary. Today a loving family has adopted her. She is undergoing speech therapy- not able to actually use her voice...

Ye Shiwen: keeping it cool, calm and collected

Ye Shiwen,16 years old, has not only won two gold medals in the 2012 Olympics, but she is also the first woman to swim faster than the best man. Ye set the world record for the 400 metre Women’s Individual Medley, beating American Ryan Lochte’s last 50 meters in the same event by a whole second. Rest of the world: not so cool, calm and collected. Ye’s incredible success has been sullied by the disbelief from the majority of the western world.  The legitimacy of her victory has been openly doubted, and she has been questioned about whether or not she has been using performance-enhancing drugs.  Ye has calmly dismissed doping allegations, and attributes her success to hard work and years of dedication. Olympic rivalry between China and the USA is highlighted in the Olympics because the only way that China can compete is in sports.  Chinese sports executive Wei Jizhong said, “for the Chinese people, the gold medal means something in politics”. The 2012 Olympics should be about global unity, but when it comes down to national pride there is a great deal of pressure for the Olympians to win gold medals.  It is this drive that leads to allegations and an ‘us versus them’ mentality.  China feels like they need to constantly play catch-up, and when they succeed they are contested. This ‘us versus them’ mentality is highlighted in a comment from Ye’s father that the west are viewing China through ‘coloured...
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