Giving Myself Grace

The SOVA Project is happy to feature this blog post written by one in our team of fantastic SOVA Ambassadors—these are young people who help create meaningful blog posts from adolescents’ perspectives. We hope you can use their post to start a conversation with your adolescent.

Recently, I have been STRESSED. I am getting ready to graduate in a couple weeks and with that comes multiple tests and assignments as well as working on preparation for me to move across the country and to start a new adult job.

I think I am doing a fairly good job of managing my stress but, sometimes it is overwhelming, especially when I have 100 things on my plate that need done in the next month. I have found that if I let my stress continue to grow without dealing with it, I tend to get really overwhelmed and shut down. In the past couple weeks, I have been trying to be more gentle on myself and give myself grace.

Giving yourself grace can be different to anyone but these are some of the ways I have been giving myself grace to deal with my stress recently. If I am tired, I go to sleep early. If I don’t feel like doing a full hour at the gym, I go for a walk outside. If I am feeling overwhelmed while studying, I give myself an hour to step away and do something that takes my mind off school. If I am too exhausted to cook dinner, I allow myself to get something quick and easy and not feel guilty about it.

As a grad student, I realize I have really high expectations for myself. I have also noticed that those high expectations can cause a lot of stress in my life if I am not “perfect.” Giving myself grace has allowed me to be easier on myself and not take everything so hard when it is not done 100% in the way that I expect.

Just doing these small changes during my day-to-day life, has actually made me more productive and motivated when things need to get done. I am no longer trying to be in control of everything but I am allowing myself some leniency on getting things done and trying to take care of myself in the process. Giving myself the grace that I deserve has been a lifesaver in the past few weeks and will continue to help me through this really stressful time in my life.

Have you ever needed to give yourself grace in a time of stress? How would you encourage your child to take breaks and give themselves grace? Do they get caught up and stressed easily?

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