A useful website for parents is Mumazine, set up by a journalist with a young child with loads of interesting posts and offers.
This week, I came across an article by Annette Du Bois who is a confidence and empowerment coach for children.
She talked about helping children deal with anxiety, especially when that stress relates to school.
Although her suggestions are aimed at younger children, they are just as applicable to teenagers.
Annette said: “With anxiety levels in children on the increase, here are a few tips to help your child feel calmer, happier and in control.”
1. Breathing – nerves, anxieties and fears have a significant effect on how we breathe. Changes in your child’s feelings and emotions can cause panicky, quick and uncontrollable breaths.
Practice belly breaths. With hands on your tummy, breathe in through your nose and make the breath push the tummy out slightly. Breathe out slowly through your mouth to allow your tummy to come back in. Do this several times.
2. Routine – we all find security in routine and order. Creating and sticking to a routine will help your child feel more comfortable and at ease with things. This could be sitting and chatting to them while they have breakfast or reading with them at bedtime, anything which consistently creates a feeling of comfort and support.
3. Communication – most communication is subconscious. However, much of what we say is negative, unhelpful and detrimental to our mental well-being.
For the next 24 hours, as a parent, focus on how you communicate (internal and external) and become aware of any negative language (I can’t, I’ll never, I won’t be able to….) Each time you become aware of a negative, change it to a positive (I’ll keep trying, when I get this I’ll…) Then take your awareness to your child’s communication and each time you hear a negative or detrimental communication, guide them to swap the negative for the positive. For further information, visit www.mumazine.com or www.champs-academy.co.uk