Tips for Feeling Worry-Free What worries you? What you see in the mirror? What you hear in the cafeteria? What your parents expect of you? Whatever it is, we guarantee there are hundreds of thousands of girls everywhere who confront those same fears every day and want to stop worrying, too. Here are common things that girls like you worry about, the science behind it all and helpful tips for feeling more worry-free.
What’s Your Worry? According to a study commissioned by Girls Inc., girls are facing increasing pressure to please at even-younger ages, making it near impossible to stop worrying. Seventy-six percent of girls in grades nine to 12 "worry about their appearance." And over half of the girls in third to fifth grade said they are worried about their body image and their ability to look "skinny" and "dress right." While there were no gender differences in worries about school, girls worry about getting along with parents and what to do when they are older. Girls are proven to worry more about personal problems, romantic relationships, being liked by other kids and being concerned about what kind of person they are. In fact, the only thing boys worry about more than girls is succeeding in their physical activities.
The Worry Cycle Science has shown that fear is hardwired deep into our brains from a very young age. Psychologists report that worry starts as young as toddler age. As we get older, we stop worrying about the old fears and replace them with new ones. Ghosts and goblins at age 6 turns into a date for the junior prom at 16. With the passing years, a dread of kidnappers or national tragedies morphs into worrying about achieving high SAT scores and being thin enough. During our teenage years, worry can manifest itself in many ways: depression, eating disorders, drug use, casual sex and many restless nights — all things that just make us worry more! The cycle can seem endless.
What to Do About Worry How can you keep your mind from racing and adding more worries? Here are some helpful hints to get the emotional weight off.
Inform yourself: Educating yourself on topics is a great way to reduce your stress about them. Read some of our other articles about some of the most stressful topics, like embarrassing moments, bullies, your period, pelvic exams and teen pregnancy.
Talk it out: Talk to your parents or a trusted older friend who is sure to calm your fears and help you put things into perspective.
Write in a journal: Sometimes simply getting your thoughts down on paper helps release the tension. Go back to older journal entries to review things you worried about months. ago. Notice how some of the topics seem silly now? Aren’t you glad you didn’t have a meltdown after all?
Exercise and breathe: Try some yoga. Take a jog or walk. You’ll feel that release energy will release stress and worry. Now you’re in control again! Learn about life as a teenage girl and read helpful information at BeingGirl.com.