Does your child worry a lot? Have over-analyzing thoughts? Or struggles to communicate feelings?

As COVID numbers increase and this different way of life continues, there’s a background level of anger that hovers and our kids, especially the highly sensitive ones pick up on it. This can lead to increased negative thoughts, worry thoughts and stress.

❤️It takes everything out of them to go to school, sleep overs, with change etc.
Ask many what if’s/should’s?’s throughout the day?
This can physically make a child sick (headache, stomach ache etc.) Here are 6 Strategies to help children
1. Worry Jar
By using a worry jar, your child can write down all his/her worries on a list of paper and place them in a jar
🕐Schedule a “Worry time” choose 15-20 min. a day (try avoid before bedtime) this is when worry likes to creep in more
✅Once worry time starts, proceed to worry all he/she wants and go over solutions to resolve worry, then rip it up.
✅Allows a time to get emotionally supported, practice EQ by naming feelings and come up with solutions to resolve the problem.
✅This is a great tool to help reduce anxiety/worry and teach children they have power over their thoughts
✅Celebrate these moments together and make a big deal out f it when your child expresses feelings and comes up with solutions.
✅Anxious kids really enjoy this technique and find it helpful
2. Name the emotion:
There are over 3000 emotion words, help our kids expand their emotional literacy  and name how they are feeling is the first step in practicing emotional intelligence. Builds confidence in kids to identify how they feel and helps them communicate their wants and needs so we can support them. Picture credit by Six Seconds
Use “I” statements
“I feel________”  
“I feel _________because”
3. Daily Feeling temperature & what’s in your heart today by Jennifer Miller, Confident kids
Make it a fun project have your kids make one as a craft. Use post it notes, change it up daily. Feelings check-in as a regular part of your morning routine can promote your child’s ability to self-regulate throughout their school day.
In naming their emotions, they are seeking understanding from other family members and are sharing what is truly going on inside. Rather than shoving it down and holding onto it, they express what’s in their hearts and don’t have to hold so tight to the secret of those big feelings. Over time, they’ll grow more comfortable with articulating their emotions adding to their resilience.
Check each of our temperatures as a matter of routine for our emotional wellness. No matter what shape or form your school year is taking, no one is escaping that low level of anxiety that lives right under the skin. Each of our worries is personal and unique but the social, political, health, environmental and economic crises of the moment are impacting us all.
Children and teens need to feel seen, heard and valued. In fact, we all do if we are going to get through the work at hand, internalize the valuable lessons of the moment and learn to thrive in this challenging time.

Note to parents:

Watching your child suffer from anxious thoughts or anxiety can be painful, overwhelming, and confusing.

✨These anxious thoughts can sabotage their happiness from enjoying childhood, life, school, sports, friendships etc.
✨Raising kids with anxiety I learned many ways to live a healthier life and how to tackle challenges as a team
✨There’s no one-size fits all solution for anxiety but great techniques that help manage it
✨The FEEL method is a tool I teach in my program from GOZEN that parents can use right away
✅Freeze: Pause and take some deep breaths with your child. Deep breathing can bring them from stress to calm
✅Empathize: anxiety is scary. Your child wants to know you get it. Try saying “that does seem scary to feel, tell me more”
✅Evaluate: once your child is calm (green zone), it’s time to figure out possible solutions
✅Let go: Your child’s worry is not a reflection of your parenting, let go of your guilt, you are an amazing parent giving your child the tools to manage their anxious thoughts
✨Allowing our kids to feel the wave of emotions instead of pushing them away will help them NOW through adulthood overcome it
Remember we are not meant to this parenting or life alone,
XO,
Tabatha Marden
Tabatha Marden