Ease Parental Anxiety
All parents will worry about their children, it is a natural role as a parent. However, a lot of parents are unrealistic about their worrying. Most parents worry about abduction, abuse, their child’s friendships, school performance, online bullying, diet, exercise, and the list goes on. Most often the anxiety paralyzes both the parent and child, making children fearful and afraid to experiment with their development.
Having a parent that worry’s too much will limit their child’s opportunities to partake in healthy activities. Giving children restrictions because you are worried will prevent your child from exploring their world, interfere with the interactions they have with peers, as well as learning from their mistakes.
It is important that parents learn to ease parental anxiety by limiting their anxieties. By doing this parents are allowing their children the opportunities and freedoms to explore, be responsible and grow independently.
The following are tome types to ease parental anxiety:
1. Learn to accept that you have anxiety and are fearful of your child making mistakes.
2. Begin to learn the real risks and facts about those anxieties. For example, parents are always concerned about their child getting abducted while paying outside. However, of the 800,000 missing children only 115 children were the victims of stereotypical kidnapping, that is by a total stranger or acquaintance. Instead of worrying, teach your child the skills needed to get out of harmful situations.
3. Teach your child healthy, effective ways to cope with anxiety, without avoiding can help both of you. If you model and teach your child the steps of approaching an activity or situation that causes anxiety they will learn how to take changes. A lot of time children became fearful of the anxieties we show around them, and they don’t get to experience things for themselves to discover if it is something they enjoy.
4. Exercise the mind alongside your child. Teach your child ways to calm down and get rid of those anxieties. Small, frequent doses of mindfulness will help both you and your child feel calm throughout the day.
5. Practice slow breathing. Slow breathing can reduce your physiological arousal. Teach your child these techniques as a young kid when you notice they may be getting anxious, but also practice this yourself as a parent.
6. Eliminate catastrophic risks to your child. For example, if you house has a pool, make sure you have a fence around it to avoid them falling in and drowning or having a scary experience. Often times parents who are anxious are working about everything and don’t think about the things that are the biggest risks.
7. Reflect on the pros and cons of parenting. This will help balance your thinking so that you recognize the risks of being over and under- protective.
8. Confront fears with reasonable action. If you are concerned with your child’s health for example, take them to the doctor. Doing something reasonable and practical about your fears is better than compulsively worrying or googling answers.