Ask Elle: The stressful junior journey

Everyone knows junior year is the hardest—so how can you effectively manage its stress?

Elle Smith, Advice Columnist

Dear Elle: So, basically, last year I coasted through the year with only doing the major homework and whatever I wanted to do. This year, I’m a junior and every class I get a lot more homework—every single day. 

Lately it’s been quite stressful because I am in theatre and it’s my first year in a production, so I’m having a hard time managing my time. I don’t know how to manage my time, and I’m stressed! What can I do?

Zero Time Management = Stress 



I’m sure that many of your peers can relate. We hear all the time as a student, “Junior year is the hardest year!” and yet, somehow it still takes us a few weeks into the semester to truly realize how crazy the workload is, especially if you are in Honors or AP classes! This makes keeping up extremely difficult! 

One thing to remember: Ask for help from your teachers! I cannot stress this enough. I’m sure you already know how hard it is to catch up when you are confused and don’t know where to start. As students, it is our job to speak up whenever we are confused, so we can stay on top of our work. 

Finally, make sure you are using not only all of your study hall and AIM time wisely, but also your time at home. Countless distractions get in our way — and you probably know which distractions get in your way, whether that is scrolling through Instagram, talking to that one kid who sits next to you in class, or just simply dozing off. Try to do assignments the day you get them, as opposed to waiting until the last minute, when you already have loads of other work, and put off your leisure time for when you’ve finished — even I struggle with this last one!

Finally, you mentioned that you are in one of our school’s productions. Congratulations! I’ll be there to cheer you on!

Need advice on school, work, love, life, or anything else that’s weighing you down? Email Elle at [email protected], and she may respond to your letter in the online or print edition of The McHenry Messenger.