While there are many adults who assume that children simply don’t have to deal with stress, this is leaving many children vulnerable to the negative effects of stress, and it could be one of the reasons so many adults struggle to deal with stress when they get older. If children aren’t taught to deal with stress (and they do indeed struggle it), how do people expect them to deal with it once they reach adulthood?
Children are faced with challenges each and every day. Not only do they have to deal with the challenges of school work, but they also need to cope with making friends, compete in sports and generally face all the trials that come with growing up, not to mention unique and sometimes horrifying situations such as dealing with bullies. Helping children to deal with these situations is integral to their healthy functioning and will go a long way in helping them cope well into adulthood.
Don’t Over-schedule Your Child
One of the biggest issues that children face these days is that they have too much to do and too little time to do it all in. Children are not only expected to stay in school for seven hours of the day, but they also have homework, sports and clubs to take part in, and this can go on for six days a week, sometimes seven. Children need time to relax and do whatever it is that they want to do, so be sure to give them time for this.
Playing is Important
Let children be children. Playing is important because it isn’t structured, pressured or timed. This is the time when children get to use their imaginations, where anything is possible and it is a big part of being a child and tends to be something that is lost very quickly.
Let Them Sleep
Your child needs enough sleep, and if they aren’t getting it, you need to step in and make some changes. Sleep is not only integral to their physical functioning, but also their emotional and cognitive development.
Teach Your Children about Stress
Teaching your children about stress, including how they can recognize its effects on their bodies can help them in learning how to deal with it before it causes irreparable damage in adulthood. Teach them that it is important for them to take time out when they feel they need it, but also be sure to pay attention to those signs that show your child is struggling to cope. Children who suddenly develop stomach aches before school might be trying to tell their parents something.
Calm parents often have calm children. Children are not only very sensitive to what is going on within their environment, but they also take the lead from their parents. This means that if you are constantly stressed and not dealing with it very well, your children are going to reflect this in their own behaviors.
Helping your children deal with stress breeds confidence and allows them to take on the unknown with a healthy amount of fear and self-belief. By taking this into adulthood, there are few things a child will be unprepared to handle.