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Toddler tantrums and wrestling with teen angst is not for the fainthearted. Raising mini versions of ourselves while remaining calm and level headed is not easy. From toothbrush battles to overcoming heartbreak, keeping your kids free from stress is a big task. 

A girl crying

As we all know, life is at it’s worst when you’re thirteen years old! Navigating the highs and lows of friendship mutiny and exam stress, you can understand why children are the way they are. 

With that in mind, arming yourself with the best tools to keep your kid stress-free will transform the way you parent. Let’s take a look at some simple tips and ideas to help you out:

Embrace imperfection

Adults and children alike have an idea of perfection. Although it looks different from one person to the next, we all build unrealistic expectations into our lives. That may look like job aspirations for you, but for your child, it may be down to grades, friendship groups, how they look, how they feel and more. 

Embracing the idea that we are all “perfectly imperfect” is all something we need to hear. Your child might not be the all-star athlete or the drama enthusiast, but they are who they are. Everyone makes mistakes, and without them, we can’t learn. Equally, your child’s learning experience helps to shape who they will become in the future. 

When times are hard, and your kid is not having the time of their life, embrace their imperfections. Let them know it is ok to fail. Let them know that just because Betty effortlessly achieves top grades, your child isn’t worth less than her. 

From feeling stressed over their appearance to feeling like they don’t fit in, your child needs to know they are worth everything to you and more. 

Sleep is a lifesaver

There’s a reason why everyone is so obsessed with sleep. From the parents coping with a newborn babe to the Mum wanting one night to herself, sleep is essential for us to operate. When your kid’s quality of sleep is on the down-low, you can expect anything from grumpy, irritable and shouty to emotional, cuddly and fretful. 

In the long run, poor sleep can lead to physical conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. The more quality sleep you have, the better your brain and body can function. 

So what can you do to ensure your child gets a good night’s sleep? 

Stick to a bedtime

The idea of sticking to a regular bedtime may strike fear into the hearts of parents with teenagers, but there’s a lot to be said about routine. No matter how old your child is, having boundaries in place is good for their health and wellbeing, as well as your own! 

Keep it simple

More than ever, our children’s social media consumption and general screen time are at an all-time high. With the added COVID-19 situation tearing up the world, we have all turned to our devices for social interaction and keeping up with the news. 

To sleep, your child needs to be able to switch off physically and mentally. Having a screen in front of you up until the point of sleep is overstimulation for your brain. So, switch it off an hour before bed. Get your kids into a habit now to reduce their dependence later. 

Make it comfortable

Stress and anxiety can come in many shapes and forms. Comfort and feeling a warm hug can instantly calm our bodies and minds. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? 

Fortunately, innovative minds have been at work to help make sleep easier! Kids weighted blankets are designed using deep pressure stimulation. So when you have a weighted blanket over you at nighttime, your body relaxes and feels more grounded due to the pressure. Sleep comes more quickly, and sleep lasts longer as a result. 

Encourage exercise

Not every kid is a natural athlete; we all know this. At the same time, you cannot deny the importance of exercise. Getting your heart pumping encourages blood flow and circulation, as well as increasing your energy levels. In short, regular exercise helps more than just your physical fitness. 

So whether your kid is an adrenaline junkie who loves to skate, surf or climb, or the more casual walker, hiker or swimmer – there are so many options to get your child moving! You can get involved too. Treat it as a bonding moment if you like. With the trend for at-home HITT workouts at an all-time high – thanks, Joe Wicks! – there are no excuses anymore. 

Stress and anxiety are kicked to the curb as your endorphins kick into action. As the happy-inducing hormone courses around your body, your mood is naturally lifted. So next time your kid is feeling down in the dumps, get them exercising! 

Talk to each other

Communication is at the heart of every interaction we have throughout each day. From smiling at the passerby on the street to liking a post on social media, we are continuously communicating one way or another. This can help make your kids free from stress.

Having someone to talk to who understands, or is at least prepared to listen can be a massive help to your child. Not only will they feel more confident in coming to you with their problems, but their ability to talk a situation through will help them to appreciate a different viewpoint too. 

Confidence can be a massive deal breaker for kids. When they don’t feel supported at home or are confronted by situations that feel out of their control, stress will ultimately become a burden for them to bear. So lighten their load. Let your child know you’re there. Start the conversation today. 

Stress is something that no-one wants to bear alone. It’s a confusing enough world for our children as it is without feeling anxious about identity, friendships, self-image, and the rest. You can be a change in your child’s life. Open up the conversation and build them up when the world is tearing them down! They will be thanking you later!

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