college application form

The college application process can be very stressful for students and their families. There are many important decisions to make and the stakes are high.  As a parent, you want to do everything in your power to support your child and help them reach their goals. As a student, it can be overwhelming trying to balance these important decisions. Juggling school work and extracurricular activities can make the process even more challenging.  Yet, there are a few things that you both can do to make the process a little easier. This blog post is to help parents understand where their child’s stress might be coming from. We will also give tips to students on how to manage stress during the application process.

The Pressures of Applications 

a good school or fulfill the expectations of others can weigh on students. This can lead to feelings of anxiety and even depression. But where do these pressures come from?

young adult searching on their computer

One source of pressure is societal expectations. Society tends to place value on certain institutions, such as Ivy League schools. This expectation leads to the idea that getting into a prestigious school is the mark of success. This pressure can come from peers, family members, and even teachers.  It’s important to remember that there is no one “right” school for everyone. Each student has different goals, needs, and aspirations. The most important thing is finding a school that is a good fit for your child, not one with the highest ranking.

Another source of pressure is personal. Students may feel a sense of pressure to live up to the expectations of their parents. They may also feel the need to achieve certain goals that they have set for themselves. It is crucial to understand that getting into a specific school does not determine success. Instead, they should focus on finding a school or career path that aligns with their personal interests and values. They will be the one attending the school and pursuing the career, not their parents or peers.

How to manage stress and pressure 

With these pressures, it can be difficult to navigate the application process without feeling overwhelmed. Here are some tips for students managing stress during this time:

  • Take a step back and remind yourself that this is one part of your life. It’s important, but it’s not worth sacrificing your well-being.
  • Create a realistic plan and timeline for completing the applications. This will help you stay organized and avoid last-minute scrambling.
  • Give yourself breaks. Take some time to relax and do things that you enjoy outside of schoolwork.
  • Talk to someone about the stressors in your life. A trusted friend or family member can offer support and advice during this time.

Remember getting into your school is not the only way to succeed. There are many different ways to achieve your goals and getting into a specific school is not the only one.

Getting Organized 

teen getting organized

When it comes to keeping track of applications, organization is key. Developing a system for keeping track of deadlines and requirements can help save a lot of time. There are a few different ways to do this. Some people prefer to use planners, where they can write down tasks and cross them off as they get completed. For example, they can start by writing down due dates, essay requirements, the cost of the application, and any other important information. This way everything is in one place, and it is easy to track progress. Other options include using digital tools, such as calendar apps or project management apps like Asana or Trello. No matter what system you want to use, the important thing is that it works for you. Once there is a system in place, be sure to stick to it. Checking the planner on a regular basis will help avoid missing any important deadlines.


Taking Breaks 

It may seem counter intuitive to take breaks during a time when there’s so much pressure to succeed. For your own mental health’s sake, it’s important for you to remember to take care of yourself. Taking breaks can help recharge and refocus your energy. This could be as simple as taking a short walk, talking to a friend, or trying some relaxation techniques. It is good to step away from your applications and give yourself time to decompress.

Seeking Support 

parent talking to teen

During the college application process, it’s important to have a support system in place. Talking to someone you can trust about the stress and pressures you may be feeling can help. This could be a parent, counselor, teacher, or friend. They can offer emotional support and practical advice during this time. It’s also helpful to connect with fellow students going through the same experience.  They may understand what you’re going through and can offer support and advice.

Remembering Your Worth 

It’s easy to get caught up in the pressure of getting into a certain school or achieving a specific goal. It’s important to remember that this is one part of life, and it does not define your worth. There are many paths to achieve goals and getting into a specific college does not determine your value. Set realistic expectations and ask for help when needed. The stress should not consume you. Instead, take care of yourself and remember that you are capable and worthy.

As a parent, it can be hard to see your child go through the stress of the college application process. But remember that you are not alone. There are many resources available to help both you and your child navigate this time. The most important thing is to stay positive and supportive, no matter what happens. As a student, take the application process but remember to take care of yourself first. There are many paths to success, and getting into a certain school does not determine your future. Stay organized, take breaks, and remember your worth throughout this process.

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