Guide to Creating a Healthy School-Life Balance


Photo by Luis Villasmil on Unsplash

From drowning in school-work to handling the return from COVID-19 remote learning, self-care is vital to reduce stress

Aarushi Mandal, Editorial/Opinion Editor

COVID-19 has put the people under constant duress and, with the flu sneaking up behind it, safety is extra important. But, the real menace creeping the halls of Green Hope is something no mask can protect you from. Senioritis. Contrary to its name, it doesn’t limit itself to seniors. Transitioning from the literal comfort of one’s own bed into a full speed school environment after a virtual year has left students burnt out, and lacking motivation. Additionally, the return of extracurriculars and sports has added extra responsibility onto everyone’s plate. As the first semester culminated, many experienced burnout for the first time. So the million dollar question which students find themselves asking is “What can I do about it?” The answer: Balance. 

School-life balance is the most obvious solution to handling stress, yet balance the hardest method to achieve. It takes dedication, practice and perseverance which are often hard to find when motivation is lacking. Something to remember is that high school is meant to be a transformative part of a person’s life. However, the emphasis on the academic side of things can often negate bigger lessons that can’t be learned in the classroom. Going out and gaining experience from friendships, relationships and hardships is typically what you carry from one year of school to the next. With that being said, listed in this article are ways this school-life balance can be found.


Oftentimes students find themselves anxious over things they cannot control, so it’s best to focus on what can control.  The first step is to simply make a list.  As silly and easy as it may sound, listing out your stresses on a piece of paper can help put things into perspective. Negative thoughts clouding your brain can often feel bigger and more overwhelming than what they really are. Quite literally looking at the things causing you  anxiety can help a person understand that it is in fact not bigger than them. With everything out on paper or even in the notes of a phone, cross out all that aren’t under your control. The list is guaranteed to be shorter.


Time management is truly one of the hardest skills to master, however, it isn’t impossible. Step one is getting a planner or some means of organizing your day. Whether it’s an app on your phone or a handwritten to do list it can greatly benefit you. This helps you to prioritize important tasks as well as not forget about anything as it’s in front of you as opposed to in your head. Going a step further and dedicating a certain period of time to a task is even more beneficial as it leaves nothing to the imagination. You won’t spend time wondering what to do or when to do it, plus it leaves you with the satisfaction of checking something off your to-do list.


A competitive academic atmosphere can give students the impression that they have to be the best. But remember you don’t have to be THE best, only YOUR best. The distinction is necessary, especially when trying to find balance between school and a personal life. Your best may not be the same as your peers and that’s okay. Striving for perfectionism will most likely lead to burnout because it is a vague and unreasonable goal that can often put too much pressure on a student. Pushing yourself is important but be aware of boundaries. Give yourself credit for getting better and don’t negate your efforts with unnecessary comparison.


Many people view self-care as something to save for later after all work has been completed. However, a lack of self care can lead to decreased productivity. You are a priority and if you aren’t at your best your work won’t be either. Taking breaks, going to bed on time or even spending time with your friends should be just as critical as completing assignments. This mentality takes time to achieve and may seem stupid at first. But, an important key to success is knowing that you don’t have to earn downtime.


There are many resources available to aid students in academics yet most students don’t utilize the resources closest to them. It isn’t Khan Academy or Photomath, it’s the people around you. Majority of students struggling with stress have yet to establish relationships with their teachers and coaches. Having an outlet is essential and it always helps when the person you’re talking to is associated with the school. Talking to just one teacher, counselor, or coach can open up a support system that you didn’t even know you had access to. They are all there to help you and if you feel overwhelmed with your course load or even things unrelated to school they have a lot of wisdom to provide.

At the end of the day school is important, but so is your personal life. Navigating it can be a journey but it doesn’t always have to be a difficult one. Motivation and balance come with time and discipline so don’t sell yourself short. Celebrate the little victories and know that high school is just a small part of the rest of your life so do your best and enjoy it.