Released this month blogger Becky Goddard-Hill’s new book Create Your own Calm is an activity book for 6-12 year olds. It shares 50 activities to help kids manage their big feelings, reduce their anxieties and feel more zen.
The activities are fun and creative and will make learning to be calm easy.
Join us for a FREE BritMums Zoom event featuring Becky on 10 September at 1 pm.
3 ways to help kids create their own calm
With school returns, worries about Coronavirus and simply growing up, kids really can find life a bit stressful. Teaching them some simple ways to calm themselves down is a real gift and one that will help them navigate tricky times in life more easily.
Here are some simple ways you can help them do this:
Do encourage kids to vent when something is wrong, write it out, draw it, have a big, gulpy cry and pour out their heart. But then teach them to move quickly to stage two – problem solving.
Venting too long and too often about the same issue makes it bigger and more important in their minds and they can get stuck and overwhelmed. Yes, it is important not to bottle things up but once vented it’s time to look at what they can do and what they can control in any given situation.
We want them to feel empowered.
A 2010 study found kids who lack problem-solving skills are more likely to be depressed and that learning problem-solving skills can improve young people’s mental health.
After you have listened to how they feel and given support and reassurance it’s time to get problem solving. Grab a piece of paper and help them come up with a plan. This will help them feel more in control and consequently much calmer.
2. Relaxing with PMR
It is powerful for your child to understand that when they feel tense in their mind their body will feel tense and when they relax their body their mind will relax too and that this is something they can control.
PMR stands for progressive muscle relaxation and is a great exercise to teach your kids
Try doing it together to start with.
- First, scrunch up your face and hold it for 8 seconds. Breathe in whilst you do this. Then breathe out and let your face relax as if you were sleeping
- Next tense your shoulders (shrug them) and relax
Now work down your body …
- Pull in your tummy and release, then do the same with your bottom,
- Ball your hands into fists then let go
- Tighten your leg muscles then release
- Scrunch your toes up then relax
They could even do this quietly at their school desk f they were feeling stressed.
Learning you have the power to relax your mind is a wonderful realisation at any age.
3. Creating a collage of calm
Encourage your kids to have a go at making a collage full of things that make them feel peaceful. They can write or cut out words, draw pictures, stick on photos or fabrics and be as creative as they wish.
- Felt tips
- A few old magazines /newspapers
- Any other bits and bobs
Once your child has completed their collage they can display it in their room to remind them of all the things that can help them feel more relaxed.
Can you try bringing these things into their life much more so feeling peaceful is a daily habit?
Perhaps they love long baths, or flying kites , or wiggling their toes in the grass? Exploring what makes them feel calm will help your child build up a resource bank of coping strategies.
Create Your Own Calm is published by Harper Collins and jam packed with calming insights and activities for kids. It is available now at Amazon and all leading book stores. It is the second in the series of Create Your Own books. The bestselling Create Your Own Happy came out in 2018 and Create Your Own Kindness will be out in 2021.