As adults, we’re trying our best to adjust to life in lockdown and the fact that our world is changing. Working from home, face coverings, queue systems to enter supermarkets, hand sanitiser and not begin able to travel as far as we’d like…while adults can find these kinds of adjustments challenging, we need to remember that our children are likely to struggle too.
It’s easy to think that time away from school and staying at home is the dream when you’re a child. And while there is plenty for your children to enjoy at home, it’s worth remembering that their lives have been turned upside down too. Being unable to visit relatives, play with friends, go to school and do the things they love can have a real detrimental effect on their mental health. And these issues can manifest themselves as angry outbursts, emotional episodes and anxiety.
Having some calming activities on hand can help them diffuse their feelings of anxiety and in turn, help them be in better control of their emotions. Read on for 3 soothing activities for anxious kids.
Colouring is a peaceful activity that promotes concentration and focus, akin to meditation. Encouraging your child to sit and colour when they’re feeling overwhelmed can help them regain control of their emotions. If you don’t have a colouring book to hand, don’t panic. You can print off a collection of colouring pages online and have them to hand when you need them. You’ll need plenty of ink supplies here, so check out these quality inkjet cartridges and the latest prices from printerinks.com.
Deep breathing exercises
Don’t worry, you won’t have to ask your child to sit cross-legged on the floor and find their “centre”. As your child’s anxiety levels rise, so does their heart rate, leading to a distressed state. By helping them bring their heart rate back down and taking deep breaths, these overwhelming feelings will pass much faster. Deep breathing exercises for kids can include activities such as blowing bubbles, feathers or even pinwheels to see how fast they can go.
Create a safe space
Noisy siblings, the dog barking, the TV blaring away… all these things can increase your child’s anxiety levels and make them feel unsafe. By creating a “safe space” in your home, as somewhere they can retreat to if they’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed, you’ll not only give your child a specific place to relax but the tools they need to take control of their emotions and calm themselves down.
Find a quiet area, away from the main traffic of the house, fill it with blankets and cushions, soft toys, maybe a book or two, and encourage your child to use the area if they need to. This is also handy for parents when they can see their child is struggling, as they can remind them to utilise this space.
Ensuring your child gets plenty of rest will also help reduce their rising anxiety levels. We’re living in unprecedented times, so remember to be patient and supportive.