5 Unique Coping Skills for Teenagers (Bonus: they work for adults too!)

Being a teenager is stressful! How to handle school, work, and other activities (and still have a social life) can be daunting to a young adult. The trick is to create ways to manage that feeling that are natural and fun. Here are 5 unique coping strategies that can reduce stress and anxiety and lift your spirits.

  1. Keep a Gratitude Journal-. It’s important to take the time to acknowledge and be grateful for the things we have. One way to do this is to keep a gratitude journal. You can record the highlights of your day, make a list of the things you are grateful for, or keep track of quotes that inspire you. The Law of Attraction says that whatever you focus on grows stronger. By making it a habit to focus on the positive, you are helping yourself live a happy life. In addition, research has shown many impressive benefits- including better sleep, fewer symptoms of illness, and more happiness.

Try the Digital Version- Gratitude Journal (iOS), Attitudes of Gratitude (Android)

  1. Make a Worry Box- Wouldn’t it be great if you could take all your worries, put them in a box and just leave them there? All you have to do is make a worry box. Find an old tissue or shoe box and label it “Worry Box”. You can decorate it if you’d like. On a piece of paper, write or draw what you’re worried about and then drop your worry into the box. Just leave your worry behind- the box will hold it for you. You can take your worry back or discard it when you are ready.

Try the Digital Version- The Worry Box (iOS and Android)

  1. Track Your Mood- When you’re aware of what you feel and you know what’s driving your emotions, it’s easier to get a grip on your worries. Tracking your moods can help you figure out why you’re feeling a certain way. For instance, you might realize that you’re extra grumpy on the days you haven’t slept well. Or you might find a link between your happy mood and your workout days.

Try the Digital Version- My Mood Tracker (iOS), T2 Mood Tracker (Android).

  1. Adult Coloring Books- Coloring isn’t just for kids anymore! Adult coloring books can be found in bookstores and online. There are even themed books like Harry Potter, zoo animals, or mandalas. Coloring is therapeutic because it helps spark creativity, helps you relax and “get away”, and makes you feel like a kid again.

Try the Digital Version- Color Therapy (iOS), Color Therapy Adult Color Book (Android)

  1. Pay it Forward- Simple acts of kindness to others can increase your own happiness. Doing acts of service, even small ones such as paying for the next person’s cup of coffee or feeding an expired parking meter, are effective stress relievers because it shows you how even your smallest deeds can make a big difference.

Try the Digital Version- Pay It Forward (iOS and Android)

What coping strategies do you use?

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Natalie Borrell

Natalie Borrell is a school psychologist and academic life coach for high school students. It is her mission to motivate teenagers to discover their potential and to dream big!
Through private coaching sessions and workshops, she teaches teenagers new ways of thinking about their lives and encourages them to push through limiting beliefs that may be holding them back from achieving their goals and dreams.
When she's not working to better the world one teen a time, you can find her on Pinterest, pretending to be a dinosaur with her toddler son, or reading cookbooks word for word like they were novels.

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