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Are you wondering how to support your child with their mental health? An important conversation to have with your child is about their mental health and how they handle what life throws at them. For many of us, life will have its ups and downs, and it’s important to teach our young ones what anxiety, depression and other illnesses look like, to protect our well-being. Here are some ways you can help support your child with their mental health.
Stop and listen
Listening to your child and what they need will do a lot of good in terms of helping them be a lot more aware of their mental health. It’s important to take the time to actively listen to what your child has to say.
It may well improve the connection between you and your child, and it makes children a lot more comfortable in terms of being honest and speaking with you about things. It takes time to support your child with their mental health but it will be helpful in the long run.
Have open conversations about mental health
It’s good to have a bigger understanding of what mental health is and what it looks like. Part of what children need to learn about is how anxiety and depression can be characterised, and what it can do to a person’s well-being. This is why many independent schools and Sixth Forms will have a clear focus on pastoral care – to help children understand the signs of mental health issues.
Show your child what thinking positively looks like
For the most part, children won’t be able to fully understand the repercussions of their actions or feelings just yet. But in the same vein, you’ll find that children resort to going right to the negatives. It’s a good time to show your child what happiness looks like and how it will impact their mood.
Be a good role model to your child and identify ways that make them feel happy. If your child trips and falls over, while helping them up and wiping away their tears, you can talk to them about how it could have been a lot worse, or that they can wear a cool plaster for the rest of the week. Sometimes, the little things have a real impact on kids.
Focus on your child’s strengths
The strengths should always outweigh the weaknesses, and even then, children can build their skills to being stronger in those areas. It’s good to look at what your child loves to do and how they can lean on them when they’re having a down day or their mood dips considerably. It also shows your child how far they’ve come.
Has this helped you with ideas of how to support your child with their mental health? Do comment and let me know below.