A healthy diet, sleep, and exercise is the foundation of feeling emotionally solid and building the resilience necessary to manage life’s challenges. Teens often feel that when they are stressed and overwhelmed there is nothing they can do about it. But that’s not accurate.
They can help prevent it
The way we take of ourselves physically absolutely impacts how we feel emotionally. This is our mind, body connection.
Let’s Be Honest
Have you ever been irritable when you didn’t get enough sleep?
Or Hangry when you didn’t eat? I know I have.
In DBT we use the acronym PLEASE to teach teens skills that help to control the physical aspects of their depression and anxiety so they will be less vulnerable to distress.
Use the following 5 strategies To Prevent Overwhelm Before It Starts
#1 PHYSICAL HEALTH
Treat your illnesses! Go to the doctor when you’re sick and take your medications as prescribed. Get rest and don’t push yourself too hard.
#2 EAT BALANCED MEALS
Eat balanced meals and make sure that you are eating enough food and often enough. Don’t skip breakfast! Focus on eating healthy balanced meals rather than restricting food groups.
#3 AVOID DRUGS AND ALCOHOL
Though we understand that experimenting with alcohol, marijuana and nicotine are a part of normal teen development, we don’t condone these behaviors. We encourage teens to be mindful of how using Drugs and Alcohol has a negative impact on their overall mental health.
#4 SLEEP WELL
The average teen needs 9 hours of sleep per night. Try to get at least 8. It is important to get up at the same time every day for your sleep cycle to stay consistent. So don’t oversleep on the weekends! There is no such thing as making up lost sleep.
#5 EXERCISE REGULARLY
This doesn’t mean you have to be at the gym every day working to the max, but get active on a regular basis. Plan to have 20 minutes or more of physical activity and exercise 4 times per week, if not daily. Join a sport, go for hike, try yoga. Physical activity will not only help you be less vulnerable to stress but it can boost your mood.
It always starts with being mindful of your current behaviors. Help your teen identify what their current level of PLEASE skills are (without being critical) and any areas that may need improvement. Then make a plan with your teen on how to improve those areas. Remember this should be a household change. Maybe the family could eat healthier or every one could commit to a physical activity.
If you have a teen who needs support and structure over this holiday season and would benefit from learning DBT skills to better manage ups and downs of teenage life click here to apply today!
We’d love to connect and help you explore the next best steps for your teen this holiday season!