How to reduce stress in children

Childhood Stress: How Parents Can Help (for Parents)

All kids and teens feel stressed at times. Stress is a normal response to changes and challenges. And life is full of those — even during childhood.

We tend to think of stress as a bad thing, caused by bad events. But upcoming good events (like graduations, holidays, or new activities) also can cause stress.

Kids and teens feel stress when there’s something they need to prepare for, adapt to, or guard against. They feel stress when something that matters to them is at stake. Change often prompts stress — even when it’s a change for the better.

Stress has a purpose. It’s a signal to get ready.

When Can Stress Be Helpful?

In small amounts, and when kids have the right support, stress can be a positive boost. It can help kids rise to a challenge. It can help them push toward goals, focus their effort, and meet deadlines. This kind of positive stress allows kids to build the inner strengths and skills known as resilience.

When Can Stress Be Harmful?

Stress or adversity that is too intense, serious, long-lasting, or sudden can overwhelm a child’s ability to cope. Stress can be harmful when kids don’t have a break from stress, or when they lack the support or the coping skills they need. Over time, too much stress can affect kids’ mental and physical health.

As a parent you can’t prevent your children from feeling stress. But you can help kids and teens cope. You can:

  • Help them use positive stress to go for goals, adapt to changes, face challenges, and gain confidence.
  • Give extra support and stability when they go through stressful life events.
  • Protect them from the harmful effects of too much stress, such as chronic stress and traumatic stress.

What Is Positive Stress?

Positive stress is the brief stress kids and teens feel when they face a challenge. It can prompt them to prepare and focus. It can motivate them to go for goals, get things done, or try new things. They might feel positive stress before a test, a big game, or a recital. When they face the challenge, the stress is over.

Positive stress gives kids the chance to grow and learn.

Here’s an example: The everyday pressure to get to school on time prompts kids to get their shoes on, gather their things, and head for the bus. But if kids don’t know how to use that positive stress, or don’t yet have the coping skills they need, it could mean a hectic race to the bus that leaves both parents and kids upset.

What parents can do: When it comes to handling that morning school prep (or any other moment of normal stress), it's tempting to step in and get everything ready for your child. But that won’t help kids learn how to use positive stress. Instead, teach kids how to prepare without doing it for them. This takes more time and patience, but it’s worth it.

This type of positive stress can prompt kids to adapt and gain coping skills they need. It can prepare them to handle life’s bigger challenges and opportunities.

What Is Life Event Stress?

Difficult Life Events

Many kids and teens face difficult life events or adversity. Some get sick or need a hospital stay. Some have parents who split up. Some face the death of a loved one, move to a new neighborhood, or start a new school. Any of these life events can cause stress.

When kids face difficult life events, they might feel stress on and off for a few days or weeks as they adjust.

What parents can do: Parents can provide extra support and stability. Listen and talk with your child. Help them feel safe and loved. If possible, let them know what to expect. Talk over what will happen, what they can do to cope, and how you’ll help. Give comfort and show caring. Set up simple routines to help them feel settled.

Good Life Events

Even life events that we think of as good can be stressful. A big birthday, the first day of a school year, graduation, holidays, or travel can prompt kids and teens to feel stress.

What parents can do: Parents can help kids and teens prepare for what’s ahead. Talk them through the situation, focusing on the positive parts. Give kids a say in the plans when possible. Listen to what they think and how they feel. If they feel stressed, let them know it’s OK and they can cope. You’ll be there for them as needed.

What Is Chronic Stress?

When difficult life events lead to stress that lasts for more than a few weeks, it’s called chronic stress. Chronic stress is hard on kids when they don’t have a break from it or when they don’t have the support they need or coping skills to offset the stress.

Having a serious health condition that lasts for a long time can lead to chronic stress. So can losing a parent or close family member or going through lasting adversity. Over time, stress like this can affect kids’ and teens’ mental and physical health. But there are things that can prevent the harmful effects of chronic stress.

What parents can do:

  • Help kids feel safe, loved, and cared for. This is the best way to offset stress. Feeling close to you and knowing you love and accept them is more important than ever. Provide routines, like the same bedtime, eating a meal together, or being there after school. Routines provide a rhythm and let kids know there are things they can count on.
  • Teach coping skills. Kids feel better when they know there are things they can do for themselves to offset their stress. Kids of all ages can learn and practice calm breathing and meditation. There are many other skills to learn too.
  • Help them take a break from stress. Make time to play, draw or paint, spend time in nature, read a book, play an instrument, be with friends and family. These activities are more than just fun. They help kids and teens feel positive emotions that offset stress.

What Is Traumatic Stress?

This is the stress that comes with trauma events that are serious, intense, or sudden. Traumas such as serious accidents or injuries, abuse, or violence can prompt this type of stress.

Parents can step in to protect kids when they know they are being mistreated or bullied. But it’s not always possible to protect kids from every type of trauma. If kids and teens go through traumatic stress, parents can help them get the care they need to recover.

What parents can do:

  • Give kids and teens extra support and care. Be there to listen and talk. Let kids know that they are safe. Validate and accept their feelings. Let them know that, with time, they will feel better.
  • Reach out to your child’s doctor or a therapist. Some need therapy to heal from traumatic stress. Parents can take part in the therapy and learn how to best help their child.
  • Spend positive time together. Encourage kids and teens to do things they enjoy. These might be things you can do together or things your teen does on their own, like enjoying music, nature, or art. These things prompt positive emotions that can offset some of the stress left over from trauma.
  • Give kids and teens a chance to use their strengths in everyday life. Trauma and stress can leave them feeling vulnerable, anxious, or unsure of themselves. Knowing what they can do and who they are as a person can help kids and teens feel strong and confident.

Reviewed by: D'Arcy Lyness, PhD

Date reviewed: April 2022

7 stress relief techniques for kids - CHOC

For parents, teens and children alike, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by stress and anxiety in our fast-paced, busy and ever-changing world.

Chances are, everyone has felt the symptoms of stress and anxiety in their bodies and minds at one time or another. Thankfully, there are some tips and tricks to help children and teens respond skillfully to stressful situations. Dr. Katelyn Anderson, a pediatric psychologist at CHOC, offers various skills to help combat anxiety.

1. Belly breathing

When someone feels nervous or stressed, their breathing and heartbeat may increase and their muscles tense and tighten – making it harder to think clearly. But when they can relax their body – through tricks like belly breathing – it can help with anxiety and pain.

How to practice belly breathing with your children
  • Start by having them lie down or sit on a chair with their feet flat on the ground.
  • Place one hand on their belly and the other on their chest.
  • Have your child take a deep breath in through their nose, filling their lungs up with air.
  • Their belly expands as they breathe in. The hand on their chest should stay still.
  • Have them turn their lips into “O” as they exhale or blow out all the air.
  • They should feel their stomach flattens as their muscles tighten.

Belly breathing can be utilized if your child needs to relax or if they are in pain. Like any other skill, the more they practice belly breathing, the better they will become. You can practice belly breathing with the whole family, no matter the age!

Belly Breathing Worksheet

2. Getting active

Getting active isn’t just good for physical health; it’s good for mental health!

If your child is feeling bored, tired, hyperactive, sad, angry or nervous, getting out and getting active can help them even out their emotions.

It doesn’t take much time or many supplies to get active – you can let your family’s imagination be your guide for fun activities. If your child has any medical problems, talk to your doctor first about what activities are safe for them. Once you have the go-ahead, the possibilities are endless! You try something new or do an activity you know well. 

Activity ideas to help your children and teens get active

For children:

  • Taking a family walk outside.
  • Riding a tricycle or bike.
  • Cleaning and organizing their room.
  • Playing pretend outside.
  • Playing fetch with your pet.
  • Swimming.
  • Following a fun, age-specific workout video.
  • Dancing to favorite tunes.
  • Playing active games with friends and family.
  • Jump roping.
  • Playing catch or shooting baskets.

Teens may enjoy any of the activities mentioned above, plus:

  • Going for a run.
  • Weightlifting at the gym – with a gym buddy for spotting!
  • Attending a yoga class or doing a yoga video at home.
  • Following workout videos online.
  • Bike riding.
  • Rollerblading.
  • Joining a sports team or playing pick-up games with friends.
  • Going for a walk or on a hike.
  • Joining a dance class.

Let these ideas serve as inspiration to find activities to get active and have fun.

Getting Active Worksheet

3. Guided Imagery

Have you ever imagined that you’re on a relaxing beach when feeling stressed? It’s actually a true, effective way for someone to cope with stressful times or situations. This strategy is called guided imagery.

How to practice guided imagery

In guided imagery, children and teens can use their imagination to focus on their senses and change the way they think and feel. It’s like daydreaming when your mind wanders; you get to imagine doing something fun.

Read the following steps to your kids as they practice guided imagery:

  • Look at videos or photos of a favorite place. Or think of an imagery script, a favorite smell or a favorite memory.
  • If you have a photo or video to look at, do that first. Otherwise, go ahead and close your eyes.
  • Imagine that you are in your special place. It can be anywhere in the world — you may be at the beach, lying in the grass at the park or in your grandma’s kitchen. Choose a place or memory that makes you feel happy and safe.
  • Use all your daydreaming skills and think about every little thing that makes your place special and experience it just as you like it. Think about what you see, smell, taste, hear and feel in your special place.
  • If you have a favorite scent or a scent from your memory, you can use that to help you relax into the good place you are visiting in your mind.
  • Be aware of how comfortable your body feels when you are imagining yourself in this place. You may notice your breathing slow down and your muscles get looser as your whole body relaxes.
  • Once you are relaxed, you can open your eyes.

Sometimes kids may have a hard time doing this imagination activity on their own. If this is the case for your child or teen, you can describe the memorable or special place while they close their eyes and listen.

Guided Imagery Worksheet

4. Journaling

A journal is a place for children and teens to write about their thoughts and feelings and record daily activities. It can help them relieve stress, learn more about themselves, process strong emotions and solve problems. Journaling can be helpful when someone is upset, scared or angry, and or when they are excited about something – there’s no wrong way to do it!

To get started, find a notebook and a pen. Pen and paper are best but typing on a tablet or computer can work too. Journaling is best done in a comfortable, relaxing and quiet setting — free from interruptions and distractions.

Have your child start writing, drawing or typing! There is no right or wrong way to journal. If your child doesn’t know what to write about, here are some ideas to get them started. They can write about:

  • What they did today.
  • Something they’re looking forward to, and why.
  • Something they’re worried about, and why.
  • A time they felt really strong or proud.
  • Something they wish they could change about their life right now.

A journal can be their own private book, or they can share it with others. It’s nice to start with 10 minutes of journaling. Then, the more often they journal, the more they will learn about themselves and the better they will feel!  

Journaling Worksheet

5. Giving thanks

Giving thanks is not something to wait until Thanksgiving for. Instead, it’s a practice that can be done anytime — in the morning, afternoon or night. It’s a great strategy to help children, teens and adults put things in perspective and make them feel happier.

Although giving thanks can be especially helpful when one is feeling stressed, crabby, frustrated, sad or angry, they can also give thanks when they are feeling fine to remember the great things in their life.

To practice giving thanks, ask your kids to think about the things they are thankful for: maybe it’s their home and belongings, experiences they’ve had or the people in their lives. Then, they can write down the things they are thankful for in a journal or notebook and add stickers, drawings or other scrapbook supplies.  

Other than writing a list, here are some other ways to practice giving thanks:

  1. Write a letter to a loved one. Have your child tell them why they are thankful for them. Then the letter can be mailed or read aloud to them in person or over the phone.
  2. Every day for a week, have your child write three good things that happened to them that day. Maybe it’s that they made a new friend, got a good grade on a test, felt healthy or had a good conversation with a friend.
  3. In addition to the three good things that happened, be sure to have them write about what caused the good thing to happen or why it happened. For example, did they meet a new friend because they said hello or tried a new activity? Did they do well on a test because it’s a subject they are good at or because they studied a lot?
  4. Send someone kind thoughts. Have your child write down all the positive things they wish for someone and give it to them. Try choosing two people to send kind thoughts to — a close family member like a sibling or parent, and a more distant family member or friend

Have fun giving thanks and see how it can help your kids relieve stress!

Giving Thanks Worksheet

6. Muscle relaxation

Muscle relaxation perfect way to help calm the bodies and minds of children or teens who are nervous, stressed or upset. By tensing and releasing different muscles, it allows the mind to calm and focus on just that one thing. It can also help both kids and adults practice recognizing when stress or worry may be causing pain and tension in different parts of their body, and how they can release it.

To perform muscle relaxation, have your child start by getting into a comfortable position. They can be lying down or sitting on a chair with their feet on the ground. Then, have them take five to 10 belly breaths. Next, have them start to focus on tensing and relaxing the various parts of the body. Read the following directions for the different parts of the body to your child:

  • Face: begin by squeezing all of the muscles in your face — eyes, cheeks, nose and forehead. Scrunch up your face. Hold in tight and count to 10. Then, let go of the tightness and feel the muscles in your face melt into relaxation.
  • Jaw: start with your jaw by clenching your teeth, biting down like you have a jawbreaker in your mouth. Hold for 10 seconds and release. 
  • Shoulders and neck: now move onto your shoulders and neck, squeezing and lifting your shoulders up to your ears — like a turtle. And release. You can repeat this a few times. Make sure to continue your belly breaths through each exercise.
  • Back: now arch your back and try to touch your shoulders together, hold and then release.
  • Stomach: move down to your stomach, sucking in and making it hard like a rock. Hold it for three seconds and then let it go.
  • Arms: to relax your arms, lift them in the air, stretching like you can touch the ceiling and then release. Or squeeze your arms against your body and hold for a few seconds before releasing.
  • Hands: for your hands, clench your fists and pretend you’re squeezing something tight in your hands — like you’re squeezing the lemon juice out of lemons.
  • Legs, feet and toes: move on to your legs, feet and toes — squeezing and curling your toes underneath your feet and releasing. Imagine a nice feeling of being warm as you relax each of your muscles. 

When you finish, take a few deep breaths and enjoy feeling relaxed.

Muscle Relaxation Worksheet

7. Pay it forward

Paying it forward is acting in kind or helpful ways toward another person or animal. Oftentimes, when someone is helpful to others, they may find that they feel happier themselves! Paying it forward should be used in situations when your child feels sad, lonely or angry or when someone else needs cheering up.

Pay it Forward Worksheet

To practice paying it forward, all your child needs is some paper, a pen or pencil, and your brain! The first step is thinking of people or animals who could use some help. Then you and your child can come up with ways you could be helpful. Some ideas are:

  • Reading a book to a younger sibling, cousin or friend.
  • Donating food to a food bank.
  • Cleaning up trash in your neighborhood or at the beach.
  • Volunteering at an animal shelter.
  • Helping family members or neighbors with yard work.
  • Offering to babysit for family or friends (as long as your child is old enough!).
  • Bringing a snack or treat to someone who is sick.
  • Giving a compliment to a friend or classmate.
  • Making a card for kids in a hospital or at school.

Soon, your kids will find that helping others will help them feel good too!

View videos explaining each stress relief technique for kids by visiting

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Unfortunately, many kids get infected with respiratory illnesses in the fall and winter seasons. CHOC experts highly encourage all eligible members of households to receive their annual flu shots. Other preventative measures like good hygiene and staying home when sick can help protect families from illness. The following articles and guides provide more information.

Get mental health resources from CHOC pediatric experts

The mental health team at CHOC curated the following resources on mental health topics common to kids and teens, such as depression, anxiety, suicide prevention and more.

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Ways to calm and relieve stress in a child - Child Development

Children often face stressful situations, and traditional methods, such as deep breathing, do not always help to cope with it. When a child needs a quick release of stress, try one of the following suggestions.

1. Turn the child upside down. Many centuries ago, yogis discovered that the position of the body, in which the head is below the level of the heart, has a calming effect on the body. To relax, the child needs to bend over, reaching for his toes with his palms, or stand on his head. The inverted body position strengthens the autonomic nervous system, which is responsible for the stress response of the body.

2. Try visualization. Research shows that visualization reduces stress levels. Invite your child to close their eyes and imagine a quiet, peaceful place. Then help him visualize the picture in detail. Ask what this place looks like, what smells there, what the child feels while being there.

3. Offer the child water. Dehydration leads to reduced mental productivity. Let your child drink a glass of cold water and sit for a while. Drink a glass of water yourself, and you will notice how this procedure calms the nervous system.

4. Sing something. Everyone knows that favorite songs cheer up. In addition, loud singing (even if you are a little out of tune) contributes to the production of “hormones of happiness” - endorphins.

5. Get into Downward Dog Pose. The pose, known in yoga as "Downward Dog", as well as the inverted position of the body, restores the autonomic nervous system. It also stretches the muscles of the arms, legs, and torso, which leads to the burning of glucose levels produced as a result of the body's reactions to stress.

6. Draw. Drawing not only helps to distract from the source of stress, but also develops stress tolerance. If even the thought of a child drawing with paint scares you, let the child draw, for example, with shaving cream on the curtain in the shower. The curtain will be easy to wash, and the child will not smear everything around.

7. Jump rope. Set a timer for two minutes, turn on the music and let your child jump rope to the rhythm of the music. If it is difficult for a child to jump rope, he can simply bounce in place.

8. Jump high. Have a competition with your child to see who can jump higher, further or faster. This is another simple yet powerful way to blow off some steam through physical activity.

9. Blow bubbles. Blowing on a spinner or blowing soap bubbles - such activities will help the child control breathing and, at the same time, normalize the state of the psyche. In addition, the child will surely enjoy running after bursting bubbles.

10. Take a hot bath. After a hard day's work, there is nothing more pleasant than to lie in a hot bath in complete silence and dimmed light. This procedure will also help the child to calm down, relax and be distracted from all activities. Let him take his favorite toy into the bathroom with him and rest for as long as he needs.

11. Take a cold shower. Although this method is completely opposite to the previous one, it also strengthens the body. A cold or even cool shower helps relieve muscle tension, improves blood flow to the heart, and noticeably improves mood. A study in which hardening practitioners took part showed that regular bathing in cold water reduces tension, fatigue, depression and negative emotions. For very young children, swimming in cold water is undesirable. It is better to gradually reduce the temperature of the water or try a contrast shower.

12. Drink warm drinks. Warm drinks on a cool day give the body a feeling of warmth. It's like a hug from the inside. A cup of hot chocolate or warm milk will help the baby quickly come into a state of harmony.

13. Blow out candles . Light a candle and have the child blow it out. Then light it again, but at the same time move it slightly away from the child. Each time the child will need to breathe deeper and deeper to blow out the candle. So in a playful way you can teach your child deep breathing.

14. Watch aquarium fish. Have you ever wondered why hospitals often have aquariums? According to studies, watching aquarium fish lowers blood pressure and heart rate. Moreover, the larger the aquarium, the more effective its action. When you need to soothe your child, take him to a local pond or aquarium for a little "fish therapy."

15. Count from 100 to 1. Counting backwards not only allows the child to distract himself from what is bothering him. It also develops concentration and is useful for preschoolers as preparation for school.

16. Chant mantras. Come up with a mantra that the child can use to calm them down. Phrases such as “I am calm” or “I am confident” will work well.

17. Breathe in your belly. Most of us breathe incorrectly, especially in stressful situations. Invite the child to imagine that his stomach is a balloon. The child must breathe deeply to fill the balloon with air. Repeat this simple exercise five times and you will see that the child will become much calmer.

18. Go for a run. Running reduces stress more effectively than a visit to a psychologist. A ten-minute light jog will not only improve your child's mood, but will also allow you to cope with stress for several hours.

19. Count to five. When the child feels that he cannot control his emotions, invite him to close his eyes and count to five. This kind of five-second meditation will allow the brain to “reboot” and look at the situation from a different perspective. It also teaches the child to think carefully before performing any action in a stressful situation.

20. Speak out. Children who are able to speak freely about their feelings and what worries them learn early to understand the situations that are happening and their own attitude towards them. Parents should not immediately advise the child how to solve the problem. First, listen to the child and ask him leading questions to help clarify the situation.

21. Write a letter to yourself. We will never be as critical of our friend as we are of ourselves. The same thing happens in children. Teach them to be kind to themselves, and in difficult situations, ask what they would say to their best friend in such a situation.

22. Decorate the wall. We are not talking about paints and decorations, you can just hang a poster or a picture from a magazine on the wall. This will help the child to show their creativity. In this case, the creative process itself is important, not the result.

23. Make the visualization board. Have the child cut out phrases and pictures from magazines to illustrate interests and dreams. Stick them on a special board on the wall. Such an activity will help the child not only understand what he wants from life, but also allow him to be distracted from the source of stress in difficult moments, focusing his attention on what he is really interested in.

24. Hug or let your child hug you . Hugs promote the production of oxytocin, a hormone that ensures the functioning of the body's immune systems. A 20-second hug reduces blood pressure, improves well-being and reduces the stress response of the body. Hugs will benefit both you and your baby.

25. Walk in nature . 50-minute walks in nature improve mental processes and reduce stress levels, according to research. If you don’t have that much free time, then even a 15-minute walk in the fresh air will help your child cope with stress.

26. Imagine yourself in a few years. This is a great way to motivate your child to set goals for the future and strive towards them. Have him write down how he wants to see himself in a week, a month, a year or more.

27. Blow on the pinwheel. As with the candles, this exercise trains the child's breathing, but here the emphasis is on controlled exhalation rather than deep inhalation. The child must make the spinner spin slowly, then quickly, then slowly again. So he learns to regulate his breathing.

28. Sculpt from plasticine. While sculpting the areas of the brain responsible for stress responses become inactive as the impulses activate other areas of the brain. You can buy plasticine in the store or make it yourself.

29. Work with clay. A similar effect is observed when working with clay. Let your child sculpt something out of clay or make a cup with a potter's wheel. This is also a great opportunity for a child to learn something interesting and form a new practical skill.

30. Write. In older children, keeping a diary or just writing down their feelings on paper has a positive effect on mood, especially if they are sure that no one reads these entries. Give your child a notebook and let him describe his feelings. Reassure your child that no one will read his notes until he asks for it. Constant journaling has a positive effect on the memory, concentration and thinking of the child.

31. Thank you. In addition to describing feelings, invite the child to write down who and for what he is grateful. It helps improve school performance and reduce stress levels. To do this, you can start a separate "notebook of gratitude."

32. Name your emotions . The inability to recognize negative emotions often causes stress in children. If the child is angry, panicking, or suffering from perfectionism, ask him to name this feeling, give it a name. Then help your child deal with negativity. For example, ask your child: “Are you worried about being perfect again?” In this playful way, you can discuss how to overcome perfectionism, and the child will not be left alone with his feeling.

33. Go on a swing. Swinging not only strengthens the muscles of the legs and torso, but also reduces stress levels (swinging movements have this effect). Give your child a ride on a swing or they can ride on their own to calm their emotions.

34. Push the wall. This is a good way to get rid of stress hormones without leaving the room. The child must push the wall for 10 seconds. Repeat the exercise three times. The alternation of muscle effort and relaxation leads to the production of “happiness hormones”.

35. Wrinkle thin paper. Paper crumpling is one of the favorite activities of young children. They are soothed not only by the rustle of paper, but also by its texture. Sensory impulses activate certain areas of the brain that reduce stress levels.

36. Pop the bubbles on the packaging. Buy some of this material and cut it into small pieces to soothe your child in times of stress.

37. Roll the tennis ball across your back. This treatment acts as a gentle soothing massage. Do it when your baby needs soothing touches. Massage the shoulders, neck and lower back - these areas are most tense at the time of stress.

38. Massage your feet with a small ball. It helps improve circulation and works on specific points on the feet to help relieve stress and tension in the leg muscles. The child can roll the ball over the entire surface of the foot, stepping on it with different strengths.

39. Identify a "quiet place" in the house. The child should have a certain place in the house where he can come to his senses in moments of loss of control over emotions. In this place, the child should feel as comfortable as possible in order to be able to have a good rest and restore peace of mind.

40. Listen to music. Music improves mood, promotes healthy sleep, reduces stress and anxiety. Listen to music of various styles, set the optimal volume level in the house, car and child's bedroom.

41. Throw a dance party. Physical activity combined with the enjoyment of music will benefit the child. He will enjoy such activity combined with entertainment. If the child is in a bad mood, turn up the music and have a dance party in the room. The mood of the child will instantly rise.

42. Shout. Sometimes a child's bad mood is due to the fact that he is overwhelmed with too many emotions. Let the child assume a free position and imagine how emotions flow through his body from his toes to his mouth. To release them, the child needs to scream loudly.

43. Change the environment. When we experience strong negative emotions, sometimes we just need to get out of the house. A change of scenery will help the baby quickly calm down. If you are at home, go for a walk. Find a quiet place outside to sit down. Change the environment and this will help the child quickly regain composure.

44. Go for a walk. We often go for walks in order to put our thoughts in order. Not only fresh air has a calming effect on us, but also the natural rhythms of nature. Go for a walk with your child, and perhaps he will share with you the reasons for his bad mood.

45. Plan a fun activity. When you are worried about something, it seems that walls are pressing against you and the world is about to collapse. Some children need help looking to the future to distract them from their internal dialogue. Plan some fun activities for the whole family, let the child participate in its discussion. Any topic related to the future will be useful to him.

46. Bake bread. All grandmothers in the world know that the process of baking bread helps to get rid of stress. You can find many easy bread recipes on the Internet. The child can independently mix the ingredients and knead the dough. He will definitely like the result of your collaboration.

47. Weave a bracelet. Working with hands causes a state of complete absorption in the occupation. Activities such as knitting, embroidery, or any other activity that helps the baby to forget about external circumstances have a similar effect.

48. Ride a bike. Cycling is slowly losing popularity among children. But cycling is not only good for the joints, it also improves balance and physical endurance. You can organize cycling trips for the whole family.

49. Color the coloring books. Coloring pages are a great way to entertain and calm a child, develop fine motor skills and concentration. Buy your child crayons and felt-tip pens and color the pages of coloring books with him.

These seemingly simple ways will help not only improve the psycho-emotional state of a child of any age, but also teach him to better understand and cope with negative emotions. These skills will serve him well throughout his life.

How can I reduce my child's stress level?

Our children are under constant stress: almost every day in every area of ​​their lives they are faced with tests, checks, assessments. Whether it's a performance at a New Year's skit, participation in the Olympics or a test at school - stress will be an inevitable companion of any of these situations.

Emotion experts note: “From the point of view of the stress response, it doesn't matter if the situation we are facing is pleasant or unpleasant. What matters is the intensity of the person's reaction to it." The task of parents is to help the child overcome the anxious period, preserving inner balance and self-esteem as much as possible. And it is the behavior of mom and dad that serves as a guide for children.

Many adults panic just as much as their children. Naturally, the level of anxiety of the child immediately begins to skyrocket. He feels something like this: “If the main people in my life are so worried, then the situation is really catastrophic! Where can someone like me cope?!” Therefore, the first thing parents need to do is to balance their internal state. Your task is to be an example of a positive attitude, strength and support for the child, to become his resource.

Easy start

It is also necessary to reduce stress on the physical level. The body is so tightly connected with our consciousness that it will help even when the child is unable to accept reasonable arguments. The authors of the new book "The Emotional Intelligence of the Child and the Common Sense of His Parents" recommend:

  1. Establish regular meals without overloading. If your child is prone to stress eating, prepare light meals and feed him often in small portions. If the child literally cannot swallow a piece from stress, then your option is liquid food, smoothies, vitamin shakes and mashed soups.
  2. Enter sleep mode. Send your genius to bed no later than 23:30 and wake up at the same time. Any scientist, great athlete or inventor will attest that without proper sleep, the ability to concentrate and produce the desired result is reduced. Do not reduce your child's chances of success with your own hands.
  3. Distract the child from preparation and encourage him to move. The gym, swimming pool, outdoor games, walking with friends or your beloved dog are great. Every evening, including the one on the eve of Day X, set aside 30-40 minutes for physical activity.
  4. Teach your child to breathe. Proper breathing is a cycle of inhalation-exhalation-pause. It should repeat smoothly and without interruptions. Train your child to breathe in continuous cycles when he thinks about the upcoming event and the most anxious moments.

Effective breathing exercises and other stress management techniques are also described in the book. The authors, well-known psychologists and recognized specialists in the development of the emotional sphere, provide a lot of useful and easily applicable information on each page. In addition to techniques for curbing stress, you will find methods for dealing with conflicts, fears, bullying, loss of interest in learning, difficulties in understanding with peers. The authors teach to recognize emotions, manage them, achieve better results without harming the personality of the child and others, grow healthy self-esteem and show empathy.

Expert advice, checklists, questionnaires, movies, music, games, emotional intelligence exercises — it's all in the book. You will not only master methods that work, but also increase your own level of emotional awareness. And pass this knowledge on to your children as a ticket to a harmonious and happy future.

I would like to finish with a quote from the professor of the University of Applied Sciences of Switzerland, an expert in the development of the emotional intelligence of the child, Davide Antoniazza from the new book: "Our world needs a generation of emotionally educated people who will not only understand the essence and influence of emotions on our lives, but will also be able to manage themselves and interact harmoniously with others."

12/11/2020 Books

11/06/2020 Books

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