Sometimes, we (and I do mean we) get so busy with ensuring that kids meet their grade-level benchmarks, that we forget that kids are not at all immune to stress. Just because they’re younger, just because they don’t pay the bills, doesn’t mean they don’t experience anxiety. Below are six tips to help kiddos tap the reset button.
1. Go outside.
I can literally feel my shoulders fall from my neck, most times, as soon as I step outside. I don’t even realize how tight I’ve become until I take that first deep breath of fresh air. Personally, experiencing nature is my number one de-stressor.
2. Don’t have a plan.
For many, that sentence alone can trigger stress, especially when we’re so accustomed to having every minute of the day planned out. Kids need time to enjoy life and a little bit more on their terms. Maybe they choose the direction of a walk, the moment one is needed. Maybe they choose the destination. The ability to do this? It’s freeing.
3. Give them no game at all.
I have to make myself do this, but truly, kids don’t have to have a pre-cut, pre-done game all the time. Let them play in the backyard. Let them create a game from sticks. When I don’t write, I get stressed. Kids can be similar. They need time to be creatives. This is a total win-win.
4. Sleep is not a luxury.
When I lack sleep, I don’t function well the next day. Unfinished projects loom. My relationships suffer. This can be a really ugly cycle and one that is absolutely stress-inducing. We all need sleep. Period.
5. Eat well.
It feels a bit strange to tie stress in kids with eating habits, but it’s not untrue. Eating poorly can affect ability, mood, and even relationships. It’s important to give kids the best fuel we can to help prevent these problematic situations.
6. Be so predictable, you’re boring.
One of my favorite movie quotes is of a parent saying, “You gotta be there for your kids. It should be boring how reliable your parents are.” At times, I adore spontaneity, but, as far as the daily, it’s so helpful for kids to know what to expect. This equals comfort, which in turn, equals calm.
About Amberly Clowe
Amberly Kristen Clowe loves to make children smile with stories, and if they laugh, even better. She is at home with a cup of coffee and a pastry. Amberly lives in Houston with her family, who just so happens to share her same zest for life. Amberly teaches both elementary and middle school students, and she hopes to learn at least one zany thing every day. You can find out more about Amberly at www.amberlykristenclowe.com.