All the Signs of Stress I Showed in My Senior Year of High School


I didn’t really think that I was that stressed during my senior year. I went to an extremely rigorous high school and had taken the hardest classes in my junior year, so senior year felt like a breeze. I was, of course, stressed considering college applications, scholarships, etc. but I thought I was doing fairly well. That was until I saw this infographic on Pinterest

It was a huge wake-up call for me. Here are some of the signs I showed. I’m not going to put descriptions next to the self-explanatory ones.

Just a disclaimer here: I didn’t feel all of this all the time. These things happened once and awhile. I wasn’t overstressed or depressed or anything of the sorts. These are just things you should be aware of if they become too much.

//Cognitive Symptoms

  • Constant Worrying– I thought this was normal because everyone worries about their future when applying to college.
  • Anxious Racing Thoughts– This happened a few times a month during first semester. I’d just lie in the fetal position in my bed for a while because I didn’t want to cause an asthma attack. I’m pretty good at lowering anxiety when I experience it.
  • Forgetfulness, disorganization– I am a very organized person. I just wasn’t last year. I was very frustrated with myself because I would forget assignments because I never wrote them down. This probably also has to do with the school changing the system of how teachers communicated to students. Some teachers used the old way and some used eClass, which caused a lot of confusion.

//Emotional Symptoms

  • Apathy– I really didn’t care anymore. This will happen near the end of high school. Once you are accepted into college, get a job, or figure out a plan, high school starts feeling insignificant. Just remember to keep your grades up.
  • Agitation, Inability to Relax– Sometimes I couldn’t fall asleep at night because my mind was racing with plans
  • Overwhelmed, like losing self-control

//Physical Symptoms

  • Weakness Fatigue– Sometimes, I couldn’t bring myself to do anything.
  • Aches, Pains, Tense Muscles, Muscle Spasms– This happened a lot. For two months, my back hurt. I had assumed it was from changing buses or my car. We went to the doctor’s for it, but they couldn’t do anything.
  • Nausea, Dizziness, Light-Headed
  • Rapid Heartbeat
  • Excess Belching, flatulence– TMI
  • Dry Mouth; Difficulty Swallowing– I drank a lot of water last year. I drink enough water anyway, but no matter how much water I drank, my throat would still feel dry.
  • Hair Loss– This is common for me, but it happened.
  • Acne– I have really oily skin. My breakouts usually happen during the summer, but I had a few that year.
  • Low Energy.
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia- I had some trouble sleeping in the beginning of the year
  • Frequent Urination– I thought it was from all the water I was drinking, but when I read this on the infographic, I added it to the list.
  • Difficulty Breathing– I attributed this to asthma, but stress was probably a factor
  • Panic Attacks– Once when I felt overwhelmed.

//Behavioral Symptoms

  • Changes in Appetite– I ate significantly more, but maintained my weight.
  • Sleeping too much; too little– I slept less, but woke up with the same amount of energy I normally do in the morning.
  • Social withdrawal– I began being tired of my family and friends. I was ready for the next phase in my life to start. Normally, I loved school and wouldn’t want to leave, but last year I counted down the hours till I got home.
  • Obsessive or compulsive behavior– I started over planning to make up for what I procrastinated on, and tried to make everything perfect. Then I would go back to procrastinating. It was a cycle.
  • Nervous Habits (nail biting, fidgeting, pacing)– I do this anyway. I don’t think this is a sign of stress. I just need to move around to focus.

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