Stress is a huge part of life but not the part that runs it! How we deal with stress is the key. As a parent, mentor, or grandparent (whatever your role may be) makes sure to convey how you deal with stress as being the key ingredient.
It is abnormal to see children today – just relaxing. People are constantly putting expectations and demands on children. Chronic stress in children is increasing – enough to concern health care individuals.
Listen to a child to make sure you notice what is going on with them. Make sure they are not overly stressed. Signs are: whining, isolation, acting out, lack of patience, stubbornness, lack of focus, headaches, stomach aches, lethargy, and more. Pay attention to these signs to see they are from stress or if they are simply a case of misbehaving.
Teach children to know the difference from relaxation and stress. Explain how stress makes a person feel – stiff like a piece of wood or when they are relaxed they may feel like a wet noodle. Help them visualize what relaxing and becoming stressed looks like. Help them practice relaxing. This way they can notice when they are becoming stressed and take action to stop the feelings associated.
Remain calm and be available as a care giver. Let them know they CAN come to you to talk about anything at all. Spend time alone with them to ensure they are comfortable. Be patient with the child. Step by step is the motto – they are learning.
Most importantly – HAVE FUN together! There is a lot that can happen while laughing – healing and basically turning back stress and years from your life. Play games, watch silly movies, exchange silly jokes! You will both be glad you did.
It is so important to remember that stress happens to everyone and how you deal with it is what will show on your face. If you become a wonderful wielder of stress – you should think of yourself as a champion – teach a child this skill and you will be investing hugely in them!