Every child experiences negative emotions. One such negative emotion is anxiety, which is due to multiple factors. For kids, it could be due to peer pressure and the fear of rejection. In such situations, when children are anxious, it’s normal for parents to be worried and hence assist them. Unfortunately, when kids become anxious, and their parents help them deal with this feeling, they learn that becoming anxious is an excellent escape/method to gain parents’ attention and time. Hence, teaching children to reduce anxiety on their own is important.
We’ve discussed 7 tips on reducing anxiety for your child.
1. Remember your child needs to learn to manage, not prevent anxiety
Parents must understand that they should help manage their childrens’ anxiety instead of removing it for them. While the intention may be to make them anxiety-free, the effort should be to teach them to manage this and do so themselves. If you continue to solve every problem for your child, they will not be able to learn to deal with their issues on their own. They might continue to depend on you and expect you to solve all their problems and fears. As parents, help your child manage their anxiety by talking to them about it and helping them identify and eradicate the reason/source for this anxiety.
2. Infuse Confidence in your kids
Life is full of challenges, competition, and ups and downs. One cannot assure a child that they will not face anxiety in life events. Common situations that kids face where they experience anxiety are- preparation for an exam, fear of failing an exam, having stress about studies, or being unable to learn a new coding language. However, you can infuse confidence in them by assuring them that they are capable of performing and succeeding in anything. This will help improve their confidence level and decrease their anxiety gradually. By enforcing this, parents can ensure that their child has the confidence to manage situations better.
3. Understand your child’s emotions
If your child is scared to give an exam, you do not want to exaggerate their anxiety and fear. Start by being empathic towards their fears and assist them in comprehending their emotions. Further, communicate with them and understand the underlying situation they are terrified to do. You can also encourage them by assuring them that these are temporary emotions and they can overcome these easily.
4. Try to reduce the anticipation period
Usually, the most challenging part of doing something is correct before it. For example, if your child is scared to take an exam, talking about their exam right before it may make them anxious. This will give your child anxiety and make it difficult for them to make it to the exam center. It is recommended for parents to keep this anticipatory period to a minimum. (the period between the first time a child experiences anxiety and an anxiety-inducing event)
5. Teach your child deep breathing exercises
According to a study by the NHS (National Health Service), deep breathing exercises have been shown to help alleviate symptoms of both depression and anxiety.
If your child has a lot of physical anxiety symptoms, such as a racing heart or tight muscles, teach them how to calm their body down with some basic deep-breathing techniques. For example, teach them the “bubble blowing” technique as an alternative activity. It involves acting like they’re blowing bubbles with a wand. Remind them how softly they should blow to obtain a huge bubble. It will help them remember to exhale slowly.
Perform such anxiety-reducing exercises with them a few times to help them relax their bodies. Then, discuss how they might remember to do it independently when they are anxious. Introducing meditation will also help kids to minimize such instances.
6. Write down your emotions on paper
One of the best tips for reducing anxiety is to write down your anxious emotions on paper.
Encourage your child to write down his anxious or negative thoughts, then tear the pieces of paper up and trash them. Writing down and tearing it up allows children to cast aside their anxieties for the time being. Sure, those fears may return at some point, but once children learn that they can conquer them by such emotion relieving acts, they feel more in control of their worries and themselves.
7. Make sure to get your child involved in some form of exercise
Daily exercise can help lessen the physical response of the body to anxiety. Physical activities help release endorphins in our body, which helps suppress negative emotions. According to a study by HelpGuide, children who practice yoga not only enjoy the elevating advantages of fitness immediately following the activity, but the effects also persist long after the session is completed.
Any form of physical activity like playing outdoor sports, running, jogging, walking, or other fitness forms, helps in such situations. For example, walking in a garden or a park barefooted helps children bond with nature, quiet anxious thoughts, and develop mindfulness.
Summing up the anxiety reduction techniques..
We hope that you now have a better understanding of the tips on reducing anxiety for your kid. While anxiety is an unanticipated emotion for some children, discussing it with your child will help them feel better. Sharing facts and reminding them that they are not alone can help significantly reduce anxiety.
One of the ways in which you can help your kid reduce anxiety is by learning coding. It helps kids learn how to learn problem-solving skills, structure their thoughts, learn the importance of persistence, become creative, and collaborate better. Research (Source: Behavior Research and Therapy) shows that children who lack problem-solving skills have a higher risk of mental health issues. Additionally, research by professor Yune Tran shows that the social benefits of learning coding like persistence can help them learn how to cope with stressful situations.
Not encouraging children to cope with negative emotions like anxiety through anxiety reduction techniques is one mistake to avoid. If you wish to know about the other mistakes you should avoid while teaching children to code, click on this link.