My school anxiety started in 4th grade with Mrs. Hitt (yes that was her real name). She was taut like a rope, spoke with a crisp voice, and held very strict boundaries.
I was a good listener and never caused trouble in class, yet every day I went home and cried because I felt so much pressure/anxiety/overwhelm. Whenever a parent tells me about their kids’ school anxiety, I remember my own tears and knotted stomach.
Fortunately, you care about kids’ emotional well being. May these 3 practical strategies and scripts that calm anxiety empower you and your child! 🌟
Strategy 1: Acknowledge Your Child’s Emotions
This is your go-to move, anytime, anywhere.
- Give space for their feelings. Yep, they’re allowed to have them.
- Ask yourself, "How’s my child feeling?" 'Worried,' 'scared,' 'nervous,' or 'sad'? 🤔
- Say it back, "You seem a bit worried about this."
Remember, "defiant" or "stubborn" aren't feelings. Let them know you see their big emotions – it builds trust and a strong bond. 🤗
Strategy 2: Worst Case, Best Case, Likely Case
Imagine they’re prepping for a monster truck show – anxiety’s in gear. Here’s how to guide them:
- Tell them, "I’m listening, I’m with you. What’s on your mind?" 👂
- Explore the worst case together – reflect their thoughts. "You worry it's too loud, or you might get lost?"
- Talk about the best case – reflect positivity. "With headphones, it might not bother you at all."
- Now, the real deal. Ask, "What’s likely?" Mix of emotions: some annoying, lots of people, and surprises. Remind them, "We’re learning and practicing together.
Strategy 3: "Roses and Thorns" Debrief
After any event:
- Ask, "What wasn’t great?" 🥀
- Then, "What was good?" 🌹
It's not about lessons, just a reflective chat. Engaging with your child in this way helps them process feelings and experiences in a healthy way.
Remember, you're not alone in this journey. Let's empower your sensitive superstar together!
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