Staying Sane in High School — Is It Actually Possible?

Brenner Yellis gives his take on how to get through high school without driving yourself crazy

Yelliss ideal vision of a student who doesnt let the perils of high school get the better of her. (Credit

Yellis’s ideal vision of a student who doesn’t let the perils of high school get the better of her. (Credit

Brenner Yellis, Associate Editor

AP Bio. AP World. English AP. Algebra 2/Trig Honors. As high school students, we are all pressured to rack up the AP and Honors classes. Many of us are convinced that the only way to get into a top college, and therefore live a successful life, is to put cumbersome loads of work on our backs in high school.

However, succeeding in high school is easier said than done.

We are compelled to study hard and for long durations of time so that we don’t actually come anywhere close to failing when we say “Oh my God, I’m gonna fail this test.”

Studying is expensive. As students, we spend money and time on review books, tutors, all-nighters and the next morning’s large coffees. All of this can be draining, and not just in bank accounts.

The lack of sleep, combined with attempts to maintain a healthy social life and familial and internal pressures to succeed, often creates one dangerous cocktail.

“Staying sane in high school is difficult,” sophomore Aliza Fine said. “Especially when you account for family obligations, maintaining a social life and striving to pass and excel in all your classes.”

These pressures also come at a pivotal time in our lives, where we are finding our identities and beginning to determine our futures.

“Apart from school, we’re going through transitions and having pressures on top of that makes it impossible to handle it all,” sophomore Dana Livian said.

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With that being said, there are many methods one can use to stay sane and help handle stress.

1. Do not be afraid to ask for help:

Whether it is about a tough equation or a tough day in general, there are an abundance of resources within the school to ask for help. Asking a friend, or sometimes even a teacher, for help with a problem can seem awkward, but the only way to solve a problem is to address it.

2. Treat Yourself!

It is perfectly okay to take a break and catch one’s breath, eat some food and potentially even leave the house for a bit! In fact, taking a little while to calm down can help one study more efficiently.

An increasing number of studies have shown that over-studying and cramming for tests can actually hurt a student’s chances of doing well. Taking a break and doing something fun can help frazzled studiers calm down and ensure that when they return from their study break, they are cool and collected.

3. Write a plan:

Studying is important! When a student writes down specific times when they will study and will not shop online or watch “one more” episode of Riverdale. Plus, being stared down by the reality of your responsibilities is a very strong motivator to get your work done ASAP.


It is definitely quite the task for a student to keep their act together during high school, but hopefully this advice will help the students who need it. There are definitely a lot of frustrated and fatigued students who could use the assistance.