As parents, we know what it’s like to have a busy schedule. Finding time to get everything done in the day can seem impossible. Just like us, our kids can become overwhelmed with expectations and activities that are thrown at them each day. Practicing relaxation strategies with your child not only provides a sense of calm, but helps to manage reactions when negative feelings are present. Building activities that help children relax after a busy day can help them wind down and can support an easier bedtime.
TAKE A MOMENT TO RELAX
A great time for relaxing activities is before bedtime. There are many easy activities that our little ones can do independently that are calming and give them a quiet moment within their day:
Teaching your child relaxation strategies not only helps them with negative feelings (worried, sad, angry, etc) when they arise, but also helps to calm a busy body. Here are some tips:
Kid Friendly Apps for Relaxation:
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if my daughter never had to experience emotional distress and I could just take it away, poof, abracadabra? One of the hardest things by far about being a parent is seeing our children in pain and we could instantly ease it. Seeing them sad, hurt, or at the will of an overpowering feeling like anger or anxiety triggers great discomfort in most parents and causes us to spring into action and employ our favorite “fix it” response.
The truth is, we humans are feeling machines. It’s not realistic to protect our children from emotional pain, or take it away for them. In fact, our attempts to do so may be sending a message that whatever feeling they are experiencing in that moment needs to shift, doesn’t belong or is just plain “wrong”. Maybe we minimize, distract, dismiss, rescue, or punish with the hope that the emotional upset will be short-lived. We may celebrate and encourage positive emotions, while suppressing negative expression of emotions or viewing it as a problem to be solved.
For children just starting school (preschool or kindergarten) or for those heading into a new school environment, the countdown to the first day can cause overwhelming amounts of emotion. Trying to navigate through these unknowns can be tricky, especially for younger kids.
Here are a few ideas to help with a successful transition back-to-school for both you and your little ones...