Your Kids Can Beat Anxiety – They Just Need the Right Weapons
It is bedtime. It is also time for the tears and fears. It is school time again. Welcome back stomachaches and tantrums. It is a party invitation. Here come the jitters and clingy hands. New classes and new seasons begin. Hello, late nights and self-doubt. Will your child ever beat anxiety?
Anxiety is a beast. It is the silent presence in your family that is wreaking havoc and taking away happiness in its wake.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Parents don’t have to accept their fate and be a lifelong victim to anxiety – and neither do their kids!
Teach your kids to fight back and beat anxiety. Teach them that they don’t have to be on the defensive, trying to keep their heads above water. Teach them that they can be on the offensive, proactively taking the bull by the horns and telling anxiety who is boss!
But how do you do this?
First educate yourself on how anxiety works.
The quickest way for parents to exacerbate their child’s anxiety is to not get anxiety. Anxiety doesn’t make sense. The more parents try to make rational sense of anxiety, the less they are getting it. If you want to help your child beat anxiety, learn what you are battling first.
Develop a language about how you talk about anxiety.
Anxiety needs to be talked about. If you sweep it under the rug, everyone will trip. Come up with a way to talk about anxiety.
I am a fan of personifying anxiety and making it something the whole family is trying to battle. This helps externalize the problem. You are not trying to change your kids, you are trying to protect them from their anxiety dictator who is bossing them around.
Understand your child’s particular fears and worries.
So many times I work with families who don’t have a true grasp on what their child’s anxiety is really about. Learn what makes your child’s anxiety tick. Do they have anxiety themes that drive their worries?
Teach your kids to fight their negative thoughts.
All too often we teach kids to take deep breaths and to get their “minds off their worries” instead of teaching them how to defeat those thoughts. Distraction can only go so far. Parents need to go to the root of the worry and pull out that weed. If not, I hope you are a good gardener.
Set up challenges to taunt anxiety.
Anxiety feeds off avoidance. It loves when it is able to convince a child to not do something because of a fear or worry. Teach your kids that the more they face their worries, the smaller their anxiety dictator will get. Help encourage this by offering challenge rewards when your kids ignore their anxiety and face their fears. As they do this, challenges will become easier and they will start to beat anxiety.
Be proactive and keep an eye out for new worries.
Anxiety doesn’t want to go away. Like a weed, it will go where you aren’t spraying. You think you beat anxiety and all the school fears. Hello, new worry about bugs. You think you tackled the whole bedtime issue? Hello, fears of getting sick.
Anxiety is relentless and you should be too. Watch your kids and look for new signs of fears and worries. Dialogue about those fears early when they are tiny weeds. You can tell your kids something like, “It sounds like your dictator is bothering you again.” This helps them keep anxiety on their radar as well.
The bad news is anxiety doesn’t just go away. The good news is, with your help, kids can beat anxiety and make it a little pest instead of a big beast.
How do you help your child with anxiety? Share your tips in the comments below.
Do you know someone who is struggling with an anxious kid? Share this article with them.More Anxiety Articles
Are you ready to battle but need a little more help?
Check out the e-course How to Teach Your Kids to Crush Anxiety.
Taught by a seasoned child therapist and anxiety expert, this course walks you through how to build your child’s skills from the ground up.
For the amount it would cost you for one therapy session, you get…
12 Video Lessons:
Giving you step-by-step instructions on how to teach your child to fight anxiety.
Videos designed in bite-size lessons that are quick and easy to digest for busy parents.
Expanding your understanding with insightful exercises at the end of each lesson.
6 Cheat Sheets:
Reference guides highlighting and expand on information covered in a lesson.
You will learn:
The inner workings of anxiety
How to speak to your child about anxiety
How to fully understand your child’s particular anxiety themes
How to stop the negative thinking loop
What to do when your child is panicky
How to set up anxiety challenges to beat anxiety
How to help your child handle life changes
How to build lifelong coping mechanisms
How to know when it is time to seek professional help
Learn at your own pace:
Life is busy. If you are like most parents, you are just trying to keep your head above water. This course was designed with busy parents in mind. Take this course at a speed that is comfortable for you. Each lesson can be done in less than an hour, making this a manageable course for even the busiest parent.
Want to plow through it and get some quick solutions? You have full access to the entire course. No waiting for the next lesson or the next week. Start and stop when you want, how often you want.Tell Me More!