This week is Children's Mental Health Week. The perfect reminder that kids mental health matters. What they start to believe now will be carried with them as they grow.
Children get sad, children will feel bad at times, they'll get stressed, angry, upset and feel the emotions that we wish we could shield them from forever. In a perfect world we would be able to do that, but reality is that we don't live in a perfect world. So when these emotions arise within our little people it's important that we're there to help support them and give them tools to help them navigate all of these feelings.
Below are 5 easy ways you can help support your child's mental health
1) Stay connected. Sit down and look them in the eyes and ask how they are. What’s made them happy, sad, upset, excited today? Even if you don’t feel like they’re listening OR if you only get a one word answer, it’s still important and it matters.Take great interest in what that have to say and how they're feeling.
2) Fill a gratitude jar and encourage them to think of something they’re thankful for/proud of. Write down and then start to fill up a jar. Gratitude can help put emotions into perspective and recalling all the good things that are happening around us helps to pull us through when things feel tough or hard.
3) Remind them of what you love about them. This might look like pinning reminders on the wall in their bedroom or grabbing our affirmation packs to assist in conversation and reminders.
4) Repeat, repeat, repeat. You can never over use the words “I love you”, “I’m proud of you” etc.
5) Be vulnerable. It’s okay to filter the information you share with your kids and so you should. However, it’s also okay for them to see some emotion. If something makes you sad/upset, explain that emotion, why you’re feeling that way and how you’ll overcome it.