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How to help your teen engage in the university admissions process without stress and overwhelm

University admissions can be stressful and taxing for students, especially with the amount of effort needed both mentally and emotionally. As a parent, helping your teen engage in the admissions process to quell their stress and overwhelm can be crucial for their overall well-being and success. Here are some practical ways to reduce stress and effectively prioritise time during the application process:

Start early:
Encourage your teen to begin the admissions process early to avoid feeling rushed or overwhelmed, mitigating possible mistakes and quelling hiccups if any. Starting early allows them to have ample time to research, plan, and complete their applications.

Break it down:
Break down the application process into smaller, manageable tasks. Create a checklist or timeline, dividing the process into different stages, such as researching colleges, preparing for standardised tests, drafting essays, and gathering recommendation letters. This approach helps your teen focus on one task at a time, reducing the feeling of being overwhelmed.

Set realistic expectations:
Help your teen understand that the admissions process is competitive, and it’s essential to set realistic expectations. Encourage them to aim high but also explore a range of schools that align with their interests and abilities. This broader perspective can alleviate stress by reducing the pressure to get into a specific institution.

Develop a support system:
Encourage your teen to seek support from family, friends, and school counselors during the application process. Having someone to talk to and share their concerns with can help reduce stress and provide valuable guidance.

Foster open communication:

Create an open and supportive environment for your teen to express their concerns, fears, and aspirations. Encourage them to communicate openly about their progress, challenges, and feelings related to the admissions process. Being heard and understood can help alleviate stress and foster a positive mindset.

Focus on the bigger picture:

Help your teen see the broader purpose of the admissions process. Remind them that it’s not just about filling up their time with activities, but rather finding the right fit for their personal and academic goals. Encourage them to reflect on their values, interests, and aspirations to make informed decisions throughout the process.

Practice time management:

Help your teen develop effective time management skills. Encourage them to prioritise their tasks, create a schedule, and set realistic deadlines. By managing their time effectively, they can allocate sufficient attention and effort to each application component, reducing stress and ensuring quality work.

Remember, every student’s journey is unique, and it’s essential to tailor these suggestions to fit your teen’s specific needs and preferences. It is important to talk to them and have a better understanding of their character and goals. Ultimately, the goal is to help them navigate the admissions process with confidence and minimise stress along the way.


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