Children can get stressed and aggravated quite easily and it’s mostly not because of anything they did wrong, but more of how they get to that point of stress. Unlike most adults we can handle day to day common stress and we learned to shoulder them because it’s the easiest way. Children however, receive stress as another emotion that they learned and accepted into their lives. They don’t necessarily understand it or know that the turmoil they’re feeling can be categorized as stress; they just feel it and usually don’t know how to manage it.
Like adults, we learn to adjust to stress which isn’t all that healthy. Healthy management of stress can prevent illnesses and stop negative thinking and behavior. As a parent, it’s inevitable that you’ll feel stress throughout the day. Add in work, home life, and any other outside factors, it’s no wonder that the world has become so uptight. While we may not be able to manage stress 100%, we can teach our children to make positive changes when they feel an upset coming on. Below are some easy steps that anyone of any age can follow and do.
It sounds simple, but a deep breath can be enough to get you out of your head and help you refocus. Pause for a few moments and focus on your breathing. Depending on the age of your child, teach them to take deep and long breaths when they feel upset or agitated.
2. Go outside
Research shows that spending a short time in a “green” environment can lower your stress and elevate your mood. Take your child to the park or let him run around in the garden or yard to let out the stressful hormones.
Laughter does more than boost your positive emotions. It also lowers your blood pressure, decrease inflammation in your heart, and improve your memory. Children naturally find things funny so encourage them with something that will get the bubbly laughter going.
4. Listen to music
Music has a very powerful effect on all of us. It can instantly change your mood, soothe away your cares, or get you excited. Find music suitable for children so the words in the song are uplifting and calming.
Exercise is great for any age and can be modified to fit any lifestyle or body. When children exercise, their heart pumps faster thus releasing endorphins that create a sense of happiness and peace. Exercise for kids can include simple jumping jacks, running, or any sport suitable for kids such as basketball, swimming, and martial arts. If you’re interested in something new and different for your children, have them try Yoga. Yoga is great for kids and adults and there are easy poses to begin with. Click here for some basic Yoga poses to help relieve stress.
For more information on ways of managing stress, check out Rodale Wellness (http://www.rodalewellness.com/).
Editor’s note: Parts of this post were taken with permission from New Hope Network/Delicious Living Magazine.