Stress is a universal health issue found not only in adults but in children too. Kids’ life is more hectic than it used to be when you were their age. Academic stress, social stress, family problems, and arguments with peers cause an inordinate amount of stress in children. Children have a different way to deal with stress.
It can be overwhelming to cope with it because of lack of maturity. What seems a trivial matter to you can be a big issue for your kids? Stressors can take a toll on their physical and mental health.
Children are sensitive. They should be kept away from as many problems as possible. However, most of the parents do not have time to talk to their kids to know if something is worrying them due to their hectic schedule, but this reckless behaviour can spoil your children.
No matter how busy you are, you should take responsibility for your kids. Try to spend as much time as possible with them so that they do not fight shy of telling you their problems. Here is how you can help your children cope with stress.
1. Keep them away from major stress precursors
Family matters are the worst stress precursors. When you discuss these matters with your kids, you need to look out for how your kids digest information. Of course, there are some concerns you cannot avoid telling your kids, for instance, you are parting your ways with your partner, or your financial condition is not good because you have lost your job.
Your kids must know about what is going on in the family. You have to ensure that they do not involve themselves too much in these matters. For instance, if you are separating, you can convince your children that the separation will not prohibit them from meeting the other partner or it will not hurt their life.
If you have lost your job, you can tell your children that you will soon find a new job and in the meantime, they should cut back on their demands for toys, amusement parks etc. Be honest with them. Tell them you have applied for loans for bad credit with no guarantor. If they continue to fritter away, it will be hard to keep up with repayments, and you will become badly off.
Whatever, the problems you are facing, make sure that children know it subtly and only when keeping them in the loop is necessary to make the situation better.
2. Keep them busy
It is a human tendency that you keep thinking about a matter unless you figure out a solution or when you are idle. Of course, your kids cannot help you find out a solution, but it will keep hitting their minds on and off. To distract from such negative thoughts, you will have to keep them busy. Buy them a book so that they read them in their free time.
Make sure that the book is engaging to read. Make sure that your kids participate in physical activities. Ask them to play games without competition to prevent them from the pressure of winning. Some good plays to keep their mind healthy are bike riding, baseball etc.
3. Tell them a few calming tips
Even though you keep your kids distracted from stress precursors, negative thoughts can hit their mind at any time. When you find that your child is struggling to get rid of those thoughts, teach them a few calming tips.
Ask them to take a deep breath to feel relieved. Tell them how they can divert their mind to something new and exciting. For instance, you can ask to get in conversation with them. Where do they want to go? Is there anything they miss or want in their life? Ask them to imagine their favourite place and tell you what it is like.
4. Give priority to their sleep
Kids must take enough sleep to boost mood. If your children do not get enough sleep, it is a red flag. Find out if they are not overscheduled, they are not thinking about current family problems, they are stressed due to peers.
You will have to talk to them. Sometimes kids behave abruptly when they are tensed. Do not shout at them and understand it is obvious to be irritated when something hits you at the back of your mind.
5. Teach your kids not to fear mistakes
Your kids must develop skills in them, but sometimes they are reluctant to do so because they fear mistakes. Remind them that to err is human and they will learn by mistakes.
Tips, as mentioned above, can keep your kids away from stress and anxiety, but you should also manage your stress not to let it harm your kids. If you have financial problems due to losing your job during COVID19, you can apply for loans for anyone to tide over.