This is the last week of school. Yipee!! (Yes, teachers are as excited about school being out as students.) However, that means for junior high and high school, we have finals. Sunday night saw a meltdown in my household as my youngest tried to study and found his backpack as well as his homework and textbooks covered in chocolate milk.
It made me realize, we need to train our kids how to deal with stress correctly. Dealing with stress isn’t something that comes naturally. We learn it. I think one of the key factors in teaching is knowledge. So, if we’re to teach our kids how to deal with stress, we’ll have to know how to deal with it on our own. Many of these suggestions are things I do to handle stress.
Kids don’t automatically know what to do with stress. Give them some options to help them deal.
1. Take a bath.
Okay, not every kid will see this as a way to relax and destress, but teenagers just might–especially if it’s accompanied with candles and music of their choice.
2. Listen to them.
When my Leadership class discussed dealing with terrible, horrible, very bad, no good days with second graders, many of the younger students said they talk to their mom when they’ve had a bad day. The teens also agreed they like to have someone listen to them.
3. Give them time.
Depending on your child, time alone may be the perfect way to destress.
4. Listen to music.
Kids love music. You may not like their music, but they do. Allow them to rock out, rap out, or whatever they need to do to release that stress.
5. Let them talk with friends.
Okay, they may want to text or message or SnapChat friends more than actually talking face-to-face, but they do want to share their troubles with their friends.
6. Give them a book to read or listen to.
My son shared with the second graders mentioned above, that he destresses when he listens to audiobooks. Author S. Smith has a suggestion of several good audiobooks to listen to.
7. Fix them a cup of tea or a hot drink of choice.
The different properties in tea enable it to calm the soul.
8. Let them play a game.
Give them time on a video game to relax. Some games will give them an outlet for the energy and frustration that is causing the stress.
9. Use essential oils.
Yep, I offered StressAway to my son. It’s amazing the power in the oil from plants.
10. Give them space.
Some kids won’t be ready or able to talk. Walk away for awhile. This may be similar to number 3, but with this one, you give them time, but expect to return and chat. Number 3 is more of the idea of an introvert who relaxes without people.
11. Pray with them.
As believers, we’re given the Holy Spirit to help us. Prayer has the power to help us realize we’re not alone in this. I love 1 Peter chapter 5 verse 7 which says, “Casting all your cares upon Him for He cares for you.” Our kids need to know they can literally roll their burdens onto Jesus and allow Him to take care of them.
These are just some ways we can teach our kids to deal with stress. What are your favorite ways to destress? Feel free to share them here for other parents to find.