This is the second installment in my Children’s Healthcare series. I am excited to have a guest writer named Brittany Dyer. She is a Professional Counselor turned SAHM (see bio at the end of post). This post does not replace the counsel of a healthcare professional. Views expressed here belong to the guest writer. Please see my disclaimer.
Much like adults, children struggle with stress also. They may be dealing with conflict within their family, problems in their own relationships with friends, over scheduled in their commitments or school stress. Nonetheless, stress for children can be overwhelming.
Here are some things to be aware of in your child’s life and some tips to help them manage the stress in their young lives.
Do they understand what stress feel like? It is important for children to understand what stress feels like to be able to know when they feel stressed.
Explain and give examples of what stress feels like to you child. Do they not want to follow through with commitments they have made? Do they feel tired more often than not? Do they not enjoy activities they used to enjoy? Do they get butterflies in their stomach in certain situations? These reasons could all be correlated to stress.
Also, be an example of a good stress manager for your children as well. Show them how to slow down and not have such an overwhelming schedule. Get enough sleep yourself to teach them how important sleep is. Cut out activities when you are feeling stressed. Enjoy life. Teach them how to effectively manage their stress by modeling how you manage your own.
Are they getting enough sleep? Sleep is an important component related to mood and stress.
Make sure your child is getting an appropriate amount of sleep. Create a nighttime routine that fosters good sleep habits. Create a bedtime routine your child does every night before going to bed. Reduce electronics prior to bedtime to promote a healthy sleep habit. Eat several hours before your children go to sleep. All of these tips will help promote good sleeping habits in your child.
Is their schedule too busy? Many times we as parents cannot see how stressful a busy schedule can be for a child. We think they can handle the busyness or they enjoy the packed out schedule they have. They may not even outright complain about it. However, participating in many extracurricular activities on top of school work can produce anxiety in some children.
Make sure your kids have downtime. Having time to rest is important to regain energy to be able to focus, perform and accomplish tasks. Both their brains and their bodies need time to rest. Keep a close eye on your child to make sure he is not overcommitted in his responsibilities.
Allow for Mistakes
Are they allowed to make mistakes? Stress often develops through expectations placed on children.
Allow your children to make mistakes. Remind them they do not have to perfectly perform every task. Help them understand trying to do their best is good enough, even if they do fail and teach them how to fail gracefully when those moments arise.
Do they have time to just play? Playing without commitment or responsibility is an important part of being a kid. Usually we understand that younger children need time to play, but they need it as they get older as well.
Allow your child to make time to play without any expectations on the form of play. Both kids young and old need time to play.
So help your child understand when they are feeling stressed, promote healthy habits to reduce stress, eliminate activities which are increasing stress and allow them time to have fun!
Hello! My name is Brittany, and I am a Professional Counselor turned Stay-at-Home-Mom. I have an almost 4 year old daughter and a 2 year old son! I enjoy learning about the Bible, crafting with my kiddos and connecting with other mamas just like me! I am from Tennessee, but currently residing in Bangkok, Thailand and love to share my experiences with others!
I hope you found this guest post helpful!
Julie, Nurse Mom
To read the first installment of my series on Children’s Healthcare, click link or the image….https://www.juliehoagwriter.com/2016/10/11/a-chemical-free-solution-to-kill-lice-on-your-childs-head/