Watching children going through stressful situations and learning to cope with stress can be very difficult. While it’s natural to want to remove the stress entirely from their lives, this is not always possible and it is much healthier to teach children ways to manage their stress. If children learn this while they are young, they will carry this skill with them throughout their life.
Encourage good sleeping patterns
Everybody knows that not getting enough sleep makes all stresses so much harder to bear. By ensuring that your child has a regular sleeping pattern, they will be much better equipped to deal with the stresses they face. Taking away electronic stimuli at least one hour before bed will help them to fall asleep more quickly and easily, and will help them to establish a routine that will promote better stress management. Even if children do not manage to get to sleep immediately with their new sleeping routines, having restful time in bed to practice breathing and meditation will make tomorrow a better day. There are even poses that work to get your kids moving and focused in the morning. Check out this simple morning yoga routine that will start the whole family off on the right foot.
Start children’s yoga with them
Yoga has been valued for centuries as one of the most effective forms of exercise against stress. Yoga for children focuses on not only the traditional physical postures, but also on controlled breathing, mindfulness and meditation. Breath control helps your child to control their stress, and is easily used throughout their day as immediate stress-relief. Using breath control techniques, it is possible to lower the heart rate and focus the mind. If children master these skills, they will be well equipped to deal with stressful situations. Meditation in yoga teaches children to use settle their minds on their own. Meditation is one of the greatest forms of stress control, and combining this with yoga will give children a strong starting point for managing their own stress. Once children have become used to the meditation offered by yoga, they can then be introduced to longer meditation sessions which focus specifically on dealing with stress and on calming anxiety.
Mindfulness is a skill that is often introduced to people through the art of yoga. Mindfulness is one of the greatest weapons we have in the fight against stress, as it enables us to understand stress triggers and our own reactions to them. Giving children this skill will help them to battle stress and anxiety, as they will understand why they react in certain ways. Once they understand their reactions to events, they will start being able to control these reactions and ultimately teach themselves to react in more positive ways. When they know when stress will strike, they will learn how to remove themselves from stressful situations or use the breathing and meditation techniques they have learned to combat stress effectively.
The three steps mentioned above are highly effective ways of helping your child manage their stress. When communication lines are open between you and your child, you are able to help guide them to safe and manageable ways of coping with their stress. Even knowing that they are able to talk to you about what they are feeling will be a huge relief for them!
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