Grade 12 is Stressing Me Out!

Grade 12 is Stressing Me Out!

Grade 12 is Stressing Me Out!

DearLucretia.com Grade 12 Stress

Dear Lucretia,

I’ve been struggling a lot with stress lately – mostly with school and what to do when I finish (I’m currently in grade 12). It has felt overwhelming. How do I cope with this? 

I’ve also been struggling with trying to stay calm while socialising. I get all nervous and start to shake and feel unwell. Is there any way I can stop this from happening? 

Anna, 17 years old

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Dear Anna,

Grade 12 can be tough and this year, Covid-19 has made it even more difficult. You are not alone in feeling overwhelmed.

I’m wondering, how do you let off steam? What do you do for fun? One of the best ways to manage stress is to do the things we enjoy. And yes, you might say, “Oh Lucretia, I don’t have time to do that”. But, even 30 minutes doing something that feels relaxing and gets you out of your head will help you cope.

Start noticing when you are over-thinking and obsessing about something (e.g. assignments, the future, exams), then distract yourself – go for a run around the house or your backyard, or do a hobby that you love. When you do this, it will interrupt your mind and get it focused on something else. This will help you relax and gain perspective too.

Also, if you’re not in isolation, try to get outside and connect with nature every day. Standing on the earth and focusing on your breath for five minutes will help you feel calmer

If being around people stresses you out, then don’t do that for a while. Spend time doing the self-care that you need to do for you.


I know you’re worrying about school finishing. You mind is saying you need to have all the answers about what comes next. Maybe some people in your life are telling you the same thing.

But your mind and those people are wrong. No one ever has it all worked out and we can’t control what happens in the future. All we can do is make the best decisions we can, with the knowledge we have at the time. It’s that simple.

Take the pressure off, show up and do your best, and let the future work itself out. You’ve got this.

Lots of love,

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