Tips for Moms: How to Help Your Kids Stay Mentally Strong

Being a mom is a tough job...the toughest maybe. Worrying about your kids becomes second nature. It’s something that you can never turn off, the constant stress of your kids’ health and safety in your head. Are they eating enough? Are they learning on schedule? Are they happy? While plenty of people will throw random pieces of advice your way, especially about eating habits and exercise and school, there is a lot less help available when it comes to your children’s mental health. How, as a parent, can you help them navigate through life and still stay mentally strong? It’s a tough job. To help you with the ups and downs and challenges, take a look at these tips for teaching your kids how to protect themselves and their minds.

Teach Them Emotional Self Control

Kids have big emotions and very few ways to cope with them. Don’t worry. That’s natural. The hard part is teaching them ways to handle and cope with emotions that are bigger than they are. Try teaching them a counting technique, counting to 5 or 10 before responding if they are mad. Add them in a yoga class to teach them breathing techniques. And most of all, be a good example. Handle your own emotions on a regular basis, and they will follow your lead.

Encourage & Critique

It is obviously extremely beneficial to encourage your children. Let them know you are proud of them. Tell them about their own strengths and talents. But, make sure that you also teach them how to manage critique. A lot of kids that don’t learn this very important skill really struggle later in life. By all means, don’t belittle your child or make them feel bad about themselves. When they act up or do something inappropriate, however, let them know why they shouldn’t do that and show them another way. If they get criticized at school or elsewhere, show them how to shake it off and let it go. Showing them how to handle criticism will pay off for the both of you in the long run.

Find Them an Outlet

Kids, just like adults, need somewhere to put their energy and passion. Allow them to explore their interests. Let them join a local sports team or a class. Let them get to know themselves and their own interests so that when something does threaten their mental well being, they have somewhere to turn. It will also help to foster independence and allow for a tame and harmless form of self expression.

Teaching your kids to be mentally fit is a tough gig. Each child is different with their own strengths and weaknesses. Use these tips to get your family moving in the right direction towards mental health and well being.

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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Donnie Ray Jones