As beginning of a school year quickly approaches, many students whether in primary, secondary or post secondary are excited to start a new year of learning, yet there are many students who don’t feel the same way about school. According to a 2016 survey that was conducted by the Ontario Secondary, College and University Association, about 65 percent of students reported experiencing the feeling of being overwhelmed by anxiety. Anxiety is often defined as apprehensive about performing normal daily routines, fear, nervousness that can manifest into physical symptoms. So how do we help students to overcome their anxiety? We provide tools to assist in helping them cope, called the “coping box”
So what is a coping box? It’s a box of any size where you can place stuff that provides calmness during stages of nervousness, being overwhelmed and feeling fearful.
So where do you begin in creating a coping box? You can start by placing comforting things that carries through your 5 senses, for instance, something to smell, such as candles, something to hear such as music.
What does a coping box do? It keeps your mind off things while focusing on something that provides simplicity such as creating art, putting together a puzzle. It also brings in emotional awareness, such as expressing your feelings through drawing, journaling, poetry writing. In addition coping box also provides the ability of creating mindfulness and grounding tools such as breathing exercises, yoga, meditation.
Keeping a safety plan cue cards are also essential in your coping box such as contact information of support and resources when coping skills aren’t enough such as connecting with a therapist, a doctor, a friend, and/or crisis line.
When your outside world is in chaos,know that you still have the power to create calmness.