Navigating your child’s anxiety
People today are facing a lot of uncertainty; uncertainty with their jobs, relationships, financial security, or the state of the world as we know it. While trying to manage their own worries, many parents and caregivers are now facing the challenge of helping their children with anxiety, fear and uncertainty.
Kids are resilient, yes, but what can you do as a parent to help them through these uncertain times?
Helping kids to figure out how to handle anxiety and fear can seem complicated. Let me try to help…
Step 1: Listen. Make time to listen to your child. A lot of kids will unload their thoughts and feelings from the day around bed time. Try to carve out a few minutes to check in that works for you.
Step 2: Validate. Try not to dismiss their worries right away even if your urge tells you to “fix it”. Let your child know that you understand where their worry or fear comes from and that it’s ok that they brought it up. Avoid the urge to say things like “well, but…”, or “nooo, that’s not true”, right away.
Step 3: Be Curious. Explore the thought or feeling, even if it seems silly to you or very far from the truth that it seems obvious to you. Your goal here is to gather information to get a clue about why they are thinking or feeling that way.
You’re doing a great job!
Give these a try and stay tuned for Steps 4 & 5 coming soon!!