Parenting: 3 Quick Strategies to Prevent Childhood Anxiety

parentingages and stages

Change is abundant in our lives and most especially in our children’s lives. They are constantly meeting new friends and adjusting to their parent’s new routine. Every new teacher, grade, or baseball coach is a change. Kids are introduced to change every day and some handle it better than others.

Kid hiding behind a chair

At a recent Mom It Forward Twitter #gno party, sponsored by PBS Kids, Tweeters shared strategies to help your kid feel less nervous about a new experience and prevent disappointment.

How to Prevent Childhood Anxiety in New Situations

  • Role Play. “Lots and lots of role play!” said @ToddlerTrailJen. Help your child walk through the new experience before it happens, so they feel more comfortable when the real time comes. Create a play-by-play of the day’s events.
  • Read books. @jylmomIF suggested finding books on the topic that is worrying your child and reading them together. Help your child relate to the characters in the book.
  • Pep Talk. “I try to remind them that they need to take risks to learn new things, and that sometimes we fail,” said @KristenMiles. @mellanhead reminds her kids that “sometimes in life, you will be disappointed but that is no reason to give up.” Give your kids lots of opportunities and let them learn as they try. “Listen and empathize with kids,” said @ImaginationSoup. It “helps kids feel heard when scared and/or disappointed.”

Anxiety is experienced by everyone. Help your child understand that it is okay to feel nervous or anxious in certain situations. They are going to encounter change and disappointment when things don’t go the way they thought many times in life, and it is alright to acknowledge those feelings. But be sure they know it should never stop them from reaching their goals.

How do you help your children deal with change?

Feature image courtesy of Flickr.

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Cambria VandeMerwe

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