We are parenting more hours a day than ever before. In-person school, in-person play dates and visits with family and friends are things we hope to resume in the near future, but they aren’t providing much relief for parents at the moment.
Have you noticed any of these issues coming up for your kids?
- stressing out over seemingly small things, like tech issues during on-line school or having to ask the teacher a question
- more disorganized than usual and having difficult time keeping up with assignments
- less physically active
- less social and more isolated
- on screens much more than usual
You are not alone. These issues can leave us feeling stressed, and we often find ourselves worrying and nagging. Here are a few ideas that can help you and your child get by in our current new normal.
- Connect with other parents. Join other parents and caregivers for an interactive, engaging online meet up where you can share your stories, ask questions, and offer and receive feedback from the Check out our FREE Parent and Caregiver Support Network every Thursday night. RSVP here to receive the Zoom link.
- Practice self-regulation. Regular mindful, calming or movement activities can help both you and your child feel better and be able to handle the ups and downs of the day. Read this recent research about the importance of brain breaks for adults and children. Check out our self-regulation cards for lots of simple ideas for you and your children. Ask your child what helps them stay calm and share with them your strategies too.
- Co-create routines. Invite your child to brainstorm a list of the things that they enjoy and that nurture them. Keep that list handy. Then, brainstorm together all that they need to get done during the day. Write everything down so you can look at it together. Talk about optimal wake up and sleep times. Then, as a team, piece together a daily routine that includes brain breaks, snacks, meals, work times, school on-screen times, homework times and times scheduled for doing what they enjoy. Create a visual routine chart, which will be a helpful tool that they can use to keep themselves on track and that allows you to step away from nagging. The routine chart is the boss and you can try asking, “Check your routine chart – what comes next?”
- Play Together. Just getting through the week can seem daunting, but play can build connection, relationship and well-being that makes everything seem more manageable. Play enhances brain health and resilience. Set aside a short time during the week that the family can count on for play. Charades, tag, cards, board games, nerf wars, Legos, puzzles, building blanket forts… What do you and your kids like to do together? Here are more ideas. Have fun together and create positive memories.