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Kids are so smart these days. Your kid probably knows more about computers and mobile phones than you ever will! But behind all that technical know-how they are still kids without the experience to protect them from the ill-effects of stress and anxiety they face at schools or on the playground with their friends. Every day, your kid has to deal with pressures of performing well in class, getting high marks in exams and pleasing you with certificates and accolades. Though that might not seem like a lot to you, for their developing brains that can be stressful. During exam season, stress levels are at the peak. This is when you need to help your child cope with the pressure of performance.
How to Know That Your Kid Is Stressed – Signs and Symptoms When children are under stress their behaviour changes. If you observe sudden mood changes or unexplainable aggression, it could be because of stress. Here are some common signs to look for: - Scary dreams and bed-wetting in sleep - Clingy behaviour - Beginning to lie - Complain of tummy pain or headaches - Poor performance in studies - Strong defiance to your authority - Ignoring you or saying ‘no’ when you ask them to do a task
In short, if you see anything in your child that seems different from their usual behaviour pay attention to it because stress could be a cause.
What Can You Do to Help? The first thing to do as a parent is to understand that stress can be dealt with proper attention and care. Here are a few exam stress relief tips to help your kid during breaks between exam preparation.
1. Spend fun time with your kid Fun time does not necessarily mean going to the water park or picnicking. You can do simple things right at home, after office. Help your child with homework and make it fun. Use your laptop to share something new and related to their homework. You can also do something together to teach new life skills. Cycling, trekking or any form of indoor sports will help your child relax.
2. 5-minute workouts Exercise releases feel-good neurotransmitters called endorphins which work magically in reducing stress levels. Workout for 5 minutes with your child. Kids don’t have long attention spans, so if you make the session longer than 5 minutes, chances are they will lose attention and get bored. Pick 5 simple exercises, do it for 1 minute each and keep things interesting. This will release endorphins and de-stress your child.
3. Keep an artsy scrapbook Scrapbooks may seem childish but they are very effective organizational tools and they help your kid’s subconscious mind become more organized. Besides being fun and relaxing, this will also help your child hone his or her art skills. Sketches and scribbles are representation of our thoughts just like words, facial expressions and voices. Allowing your child to express it through a scrapbook will help them relax and have fun.
4. Stress relieving Pranayama Instead of working out, you can also choose to practise a few stress relieving Pranayama techniques with your child. Simple breathing techniques such as Bhramari, Nadi Shoddana Adham Pranayama and Sama Vriti are great in calming down a stressed mind. Besides, there are multiple benefits of Pranayama and meditation. It improves blood circulation to the brain and boosts concertation. Practicing pranayama with the correct posture relieves backaches, joint pains and adds flexibility and strength to the body.
BONUS TIP: Teach your kids to deal with failure The inability to deal with failure and to maintain a positive outlook in the face of defeat leads to stress in children as well as in adults. Is your child stressed because of poor marks in school or because they lost in sports? Teach your child how to take the right steps after failure. Explain how failure is a part of the learning process. If they don’t fail, they will never learn. Teach them how to fix the problem and not repeat the same mistakes next time. Your support and time will help your child overcome stress and perform well in every aspect of life.
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