Stress in modern times is not just afflicted to adults but is common among kids too. The life of a kid today is not just limited to studies, school and free play at home. There’s a lot going on in their lives such as study pressure, peer pressure, social media addiction, broken families etc. to name a few. It is very important to engage kids in activities that provide mental, social and physical stimulation and help in keeping stress at bay.
The following are some time-tested strategies for helping kids overcome stress:
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- Avoid Overscheduling: Parents who overschedule a child’s day are contributing to their stress levels and this might not have positive effects as they grow. There are too many expectations from kids these days. We expect them to perform well in academics and extra-curricular activities. Minimal attention is given to the amount of time they get to rest, play and sleep.
- Sleep: Sleep is non-negotiable. Kids need at least 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep for their brains and bodies to function normally. Cutting down on the quality and quantity of your child’s sleep could lead to side effects such as headaches, irritability, anxiety and of course stress. Good sleep has been shown to improve grades at school. Creating a conducive environment for your child in his room helps facilitate sleep. Avoid having gadgets like TV’s, video games and cell phones in your child’s room.
- Enrolling Your Kids In Fun-Centric Activities: Do some research on clubs around your area that organize fun-based activities. Enrolling kids in such clubs will help them unwind from their rigorous routines. Some examples of activities at such after-school fun clubs are drawing, painting, playing musical instruments, story-telling, book reading and much more. There is something to suit every child’s interest.
- Play: Unsupervised playtime has a very calming effect on kids. Encourage your child to step out every day and play with kids around. It will help your child on many levels. Playing helps children develop on the emotional, social and physical front. It helps the brain release feel-good chemicals which boost the mood and significantly lowers stress levels. You can also use play as an opportunity of bonding with your child one on one. Kids find it very relaxing to spend time with their parents. Games like chess, scrabble, Ludo, table tennis, badminton, etc. are great for parents and children.
- Set An Example: Kids have a tendency of emulating what their parents feel and do. Be the change you want to see in them. Give them a break. Relax by sparing a few minutes daily to meditate, do yoga or a simply go out for a walk with them.