Ways to teach children to cope with stress

Does your child exhibit nervousness and are they easily agitated? Have you noticed a change in appetite or sleep patterns? Your child might be experiencing stress. Here are some effective ways to help your child cope, and manage their stress:

State of affairs

Are family problems affecting your child? Financial tensions, marital problems and even sibling rivalry can be the cause of the stress. What it is that you think might be troubling your child? Set aside some time to talk to your child. Probative questions like how are you feeling, is there anything you would like to talk about, and we can talk about anything are all good starters. Don’t try and be blunt and too direct. What is troubling them may be something completely off your radar.

Once you asses what the problem is, help your child determine action steps they can take to help resolve the problem. Help him to think out loud, and talk out the ways to solve the problem. Tell him that you will be there to support him no matter what. Reassurance will empower your child to take on the challenge, and you will also be helping them to sharpen analytical skills.

Diet

Watch the sugar and fat. If your child is eating too much of these weight gain, anxiety and stress could soon follow. Offer many healthy snack options. Pretzels, veggies with low fat dips and fresh fruit make good treats. Maintaining a good blood sugar level will assist lowering stress levels. This will also help promote more restful and better sleep.

Exercise

What is the activity of your child? If they are always in front of a computer screen or television set, you have your work cut out. Regular exercise for children is something called playing. It cannot be much simpler than that. Go outside and play. Go to the park, take a ride on the bike, join a soccer team or other fun sport. Exercise is one of the best stress busters known to man. It is actually the healthiest and most effective way to reduce stress. This will also encourage a lifestyle that promotes health habits.

Get a hobby

Kids love to paint, create, bake, sew and cook. Get involved in a class and this will provide a great focus, and help alleviate stress. This will also provide your child with the opportunity to explore his talents, and raise his self-esteem. Be supportive and attend functions that celebrate your child’s new found talents.

If you don’t already attend a church try it. Families that engage in church and faith based activities can find a valuable resource not only with connecting to God, but with other really great forms of support from the congregation.

Practice what you preach

You are your child’s first and best teacher. Your child watches everything you do. Do as I say, not as I do, does not apply here. If your eating habits are poor, his will be too. If exercise is not a priority to you, it won’t be to him either. If there is no place for God in your life, there will be no room for him in your child’s life.

When you establish a good communication dialogue with your child, institute healthy eating, sleeping and exercise patterns and get involved to discover hidden talents, you will help your child not only reduce stress, but you will be providing you child with a great gift by establishing healthy living at an early age.