By Ella Javorsky
Whether it’s a test, a difficult class, the college application process, or ones workload in general, stress and anxiety can build up very easily in students both in and out of school. The fear of failure has students constantly striving for perfection. Many students have a tendency to think about the past, thinking of every little mistake they made on the test. And the future, thinking of what will happen on future assignments. One thought leads to another and the stress level continues to build up. Students become absorbed with their thoughts which impacts their focus on the present.
There is a simple solution to relieving students stress and allowing them to concentrate on what is happening in the moment. Practicing meditation in class is extremely beneficial for kids who are jammed with work all day.
Breathing techniques, pacifying music, and scents of lavender guarantee relaxation. These methods allow time to check in with oneself and recalibrate. According to Michael Young, a Spanish teacher who practices meditation with his students every day, “It’s a life skill that will benefit you for the rest of your life. It’s good to start at a young age and bring it to stressful situations beyond the school environment.” He explains that moments and memories are made when you are living in the present and although you may have future goals that you think about, the majority of life is the journey that leads to the final goal. Chloe Bernstein, a freshman who participates in meditation during Mr. Young’s class, believes thatc“Meditating in class serves as an incredible way to allow us students to step back from our stressful day to day lives at school, and it has only had positive benefits for me. Meditating at the beginning of class has given me the ability to relax, reflect, and enjoy the learning process even more.” A big part of meditation is that it optimizes learning and allows for complete focus, making the learning process more pleasurable.
One may argue that meditation takes away from class and that it is a waste of time. However, the first ten to fifteen minutes provided for meditation, leave thirty five minutes of more beneficial learning because students minds are cleared and they are calmer, mindful, and more focused. Mr. Young emphasizes that “It’s down time that we aren’t wasting. Although it may take time to adjust, everyone will take something different out of it.” Meditation provides an escape from the constant thoughts in one’s head that lead to self doubt.
Stress is inevitable for students, but meditation is a great way to cope with this stress. Meditation helps you to not dwell over the past, or worry about what’s in store for the future. Overall, meditation provides many different benefits, and is a skill that all students should learn and practice throughout their overwhelming day.