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The Round Table

The student news site of Stamford High School

The Round Table

The student news site of Stamford High School

The Round Table


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“The constant pressure to be perfect just makes me less motivated to do my work”: How Self-Consciousness Affects the Students of SHS

Ryan Prem looking self-conscious


We all know that no student is perfect and that everybody has their flaws. These personal problems can affect students in many different ways. Things like anxiety, depression, or even relationship issues can change how students operate throughout the school day. But the most common and apparent one of these issues that most students struggle with would be the issue of self-consciousness. 


Now, what exactly is self-consciousness? Self-consciousness can be defined as someone’s constant worry about their appearance, or actions being observed or judged by others. 

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Self-consciousness in a student can have a very negative impact on a student’s education such as lessening a student’s desire to learn, obstructing their ability to focus, and decreasing their willingness to take risks which are all quite obviously essential traits in education. “The constant pressure to be perfect just makes me less motivated to do my work.” Stated a female senior who wished to remain anonymous after being asked how self-consciousness affects their daily school life. “I just feel like I have to be perfect at everything all the time while also being too scared to admit when I need help.”


A 2022 study from the CS Mott Children’s Hospital showed that teenage girls had the highest self-conscious rate of 73%, with teenage boys getting up to 69%. Although female teens have a higher rate of self-consciousness than males, these problems all come from the same sources and form similar results no matter the gender of that individual. Social media, harsh words from friends or family, comparing themselves to others, or even just self-doubt in general. These things can cause teenagers to be more uncertain of themselves and worry if they’re doing, saying, or wearing the right things. Most teenagers who are self-conscious of themselves worry about their appearance, height, weight, voice, and many other things while interacting with others, which can cause communication problems in social situations.


Self-consciousness can take a huge toll on a student’s social life and ability to interact with other students. 12th-grade student Kevin Santos Banegas said, “I usually just stay quiet when I’m in a group. I usually don’t actively try to talk to others unless they talk to me first.” Santos says, “I just don’t feel confident in myself to talk to others.”


Shyness heavily ties into self-consciousness, and also affects a student’s education in many ways. It directly affects relationships with their peers along with classroom participation with fears that they might be judged or made fun of for it, which can and will affect their overall educational performance. 


Although being self-conscious is very common among students and teenagers, it is often overshadowed or even overlooked by many (more specifically media outlets) who instead lean their focus towards more talked about things like anxiety. In no way is having anxiety inferior to being self-conscious, but anxiety is a more prioritized issue in school districts although the percentage of students that have any form of anxiety (teenage females:38%, teenage males:26.1%)  is significantly lower than the percentage of students that are self-conscious about themselves.


Stamford High School Social worker Ms. Joann Carde suggested that schools should do more to help out with student’s self-consciousness. “It could be something as small as setting up tables and giving the kids positive affirmations.” She said,  “Sometimes kids just don’t know how to look at themselves positively,  sometimes it’s because they grow up in a household where all they hear is negativity about themselves or their body, and the way they look.” She adds, “As a school, we could definitely do a better job with that, even just small compliments from their teachers could go a long way, rather than getting angry at them for small things.” She states, “It’s very easy for students to internalize negativity, sometimes it’s very hard for them to accept positivity from others.


While self-conscious students typically prefer to stay quiet about the issue, school districts (including Stanford) should more openly tackle the issue instead of dismissing it and hoping that it will pass if they truly want students to excel in their schoolwork with as much efficiency as possible.

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  • B

    Brenda RiveraApr 13, 2024 at 4:35 pm

    Very interesting and important subject!!!😊👏👏👏

  • J

    Jayden’s biggest fanApr 4, 2024 at 10:44 am