teen girls using coping skills
Coping skills are methods a person uses to deal with overwhelming and stressful situations or emotions. These skills like any other require practice to develop, but will become easier overtime. There are many forms of coping skills that can be used to help with an array of mental health disorders like anxiety and depression.

Inspirations for Youth and Families incorporates coping skills into many of our therapeutic treatments. By doing so our teens learn to develop and hone these skills for real life situations. This allows our teens to have a higher success rate of maintaining sobriety when they return home.

A few of our teens shared the coping skills they’ve learned and how they plan to use them:

recreational activities

Helena enjoys singing, playing the piano and other musically driven activities.

Engaging in recreational activities

Many of our teens admitted to using drug and alcohol as a distraction from their problems and emotions. One of our teens in the discussion, Helena said she learned how to address the problems in her life by engaging in recreational activities.

“I have learned many coping skills and positive alternatives like drawing, singing, playing basketball, playing the piano and listening to music. These coping skills help me escape from the emotions that bring me down. I use these skills when I feel sad, angry or annoyed. With these activities I am able to continue moving along in life and make wiser decisions instead of being consumed by my emotions at the time.”

“I have learned that I must stay mindful of the present and not to dwell on the past.”


Using your inner strength

Other teens tend to hold on to unwanted emotions and allow the constant negativity to drive them into drug abuse and reckless behavior.

i am not powerless

Molly copes by relying on her inner strength to keep her strong!

Since being admitted Molly has learned to properly use her inner strength to create positive and healthy outcomes.

“Some coping skills I learned at Inspirations are how to self soothe, radical acceptance and letting go of negative emotions. I’ve learned how to remove myself from a situation to self soothe or calm myself down when I get worked up.”

“As for radical acceptance I’ve learned to accept the things I cannot change like if my dad says I can’t do something. I learned to accept that and focus my energy on another subject to pass the time and get my mind of that emotion. I can do art, play music or even meditate to focus my thoughts somewhere else.”

“Letting go of my negative emotions is a coping skill I am currently still working on. So far I have learned that I must stay mindful of the present and not to dwell on the past. My dad and I have a lot of work to do but holding grudges will not get us anywhere. Together we are working on this and learning to let go of the past.”


Communicating with others

Adolescence is a time where teens experience a flood of emotions. These changes in emotions are often bottled up for fear of ridicule and misunderstanding. Another teen, Carly, is learning how to properly express herself and how to effectively communicate with others.

Taking to a friend

Carly plans to effectively communicate with friends and family.

“Coping skills I’ve learned and will be using when I return home will be to talk to another person when I feel like using a drug. I have a list of people including my best friend who will help take my mind of using and help me feel better about choice to not use drugs.”

“I will also be using “I” statements which will help others understand how I am feeling better. I have been using these during my family and group therapy sessions here and I find that they make communication much easier for both me and others. Some examples of these are I feel angry when you do this or I feel sad when this happens.”

We encourage you to try these valuable coping skills that actually came from out teens and not from us.