Stress and Your Children – Five Tips to Help Them to Cope
Adults have to deal with stress all of the time but do you realize that your children do as well? Children feel the stress of life and it affects them but they experience it in a different manner than do grown-ups. They may not experience it on the same scale as adults do and they may not experience it as often but children feel the pressure of daily living and it can give rise to anxiety, depression, worry and doubts.
Children worry about making and keeping friends as being well liked is so important to youngsters. They worry about their grades and getting their chores done. They also worry about living up to their parents’ expectations and not disappointing them. As a mother you play an important role in helping your children to cope with stress. Here we offer you some help in the area of stress reduction for your kids:
1. The single most important thing you can do to help your children to effectively cope with stress is to be there for them. Listen to your children when they want to talk about something that is bothering them. Do everything you can to put yourself in their shoes and from there to offer assistance, advice and to help them to come up with a solution to the problem. As adults it is sometimes not an easy feat to try to relate to the concerns that children have but do your very best. Keep in mind that you were once a child too.
2. Encourage your child to get enough physical activity. Exercise can be a stress buster for people of all ages. Make exercise a regular aspect of your child’s day-to-day life. Gym class at school is not enough exercise for your child, especially when he is feeling anxious and worried. Physical activity is not just good for the body but also for the mind as well. Help your child to figure out what kinds of exercise he would like to do and then support him in his choices.
As often as possible join your son or daughter in enjoying exercises together. Go for walks or bike rides. Go swimming in the local pool or shoot a few hoops in the front yard. Play badminton or kick a soccer ball around. Physical activity can clear the mind and can keep stress at a manageable level.
3. Buy your child a diary or journal and encourage him to write in it as often as he or she wants to. Encourage your child to use it as a way to express how they are feeling on paper. This stress reduction technique is called journaling and it can help to relieve stress as it helps a person to get to know themselves better. It also helps them to see their problems in black and white and can provide a means of helping your child to cope with the difficulties he or she is going through. By writing in a journal your youngster may be able to come up with their own methods of dealing with their problems.
4. Your child needs to have time to play, run around and laugh out loud. Encourage your child’s creativity when it comes to his hobbies and do what you can to be enthusiastic and supportive. By having outlets that bring him pleasure and enjoyment your child will develop better coping mechanisms. There is a time for work and a time for play. Ensure that in your home there is a good balance between the two.
5. One of the best defenses against stress is to build a strong immunity system. To do this make sure your child eats a healthy diet that is well-balanced and rich in vitamins and minerals. You should also make sure that your child gets a good night’s sleep. A deficiency in either healthy foods or sleep can lead a child to become irritable or frustrated more easily. A weak immune system can open the door to not only a greater level of stress but also a higher potential for illness.