Traditionally, many school-aged children love school and look forward to start of a new school year. But for other children, it’s also a time of great stress. In fact, stress—those overwhelming feelings of doubt about ourselves or our ability to handle things—is as common in children as adults.
The greatest challenge to parents today is teaching children to manage stress effectively. Children may react to excess stress with behavior that seems immature, inappropriate, or even disturbing. One child exhibits anxiety and tears the night before going back to school. Another child speaks of new teacher and asks her parents questions while trying to imagine the teacher's personality. Another child enjoys shopping for school clothes and looks forward to seeing new friends.
Stress can be terrifying to children who lack the emotional maturity or experience to understand and deal with it. The challenge for parents, teachers, and other caretakers include how to recognize signs of stress in children of different ages, how to know when stress threatens to overwhelm a child, and what to do about it.
In Nurture Your Child’s Gift, I offer excellent suggestions to help parents cope with their children’s stress. A stressed-out condition can result from a specific cause or from life in general. Here are some examples:
- At 17, Jen was a high school senior expecting to graduate with honors in the Spring. Just before Christmas, however, Jen’s father lost his job and the family had to move into the basement of a cousin’s house. Jen soon developed a severe allergy, then asthma. The illness cost her so much time from school that she required home-schooling to make up the difference.
- Mark was only two when his parents divorced. Confused, Mark wandered the house, calling plaintively for his father, but weekends with Dad made him cry. Most weekends, Mark developed upset stomachs that were so bad he’d miss preschool on Mondays.
Toddlers need to feel safe and comfortable. Stress for preschool children can arise from a new face at home or at day care, the disappearance of a familiar face, visiting lots of new places at once, or abrupt changes in the family’s structure, relationships or daily routine.
During the grade-school years, children become concerned with pleasing people like teachers, parents, guardians and coaches. School life—even a change in assigned seating or having to take a test—brings higher levels of stress every year. And when it comes to peers, even the threat of diminished acceptance is terrifying. Sleep-overs, birthday parties, sporting events and music competitions can trigger stressful reactions.
Through middle school and beyond, the pressures kids feel from parents, teachers, peers, society at large, and from within increases. Children have to learn adapt to these pressures. Because they have grown in their intelligence, curiosity and knowledge of community, demands for their attention, time, energy and effort can often feel like a tug of war. As in the cases of Mark and Jen, it is not unusual for life-altering events to express themselves in illness. At the University of Missouri, for instance, researcher Mark Flinn found that a child’s risk of upper-respiratory infection increases by 200 percent for the seven days following a high-stress event. And parents like Miranda’s might confuse what they believe are normal behavior with an expression of anxiety. Children often display their tensions in small acts that have aggressive undertones.
How You Can Help
- There are many ways parents can help their children deal with stress and stressful situations.
- Don’t try to fix everything for the child, and avoid offering advice. Sometimes just listening so that your child feels truly heard may be enough to relieve the stress.
- As you listen, ask questions that encourage your child to think a situation through. “What’s the next step?” or “How would you handle that?” are good questions. Ask a lot of “what-if” questions, too.
- Help children listen to themselves. Nurture Your Child’s Gift suggests quiet-time techniques for children to listen to nature sounds like rain or waves upon the beach, to their own heartbeat, or to recordings of whales, dolphins or birds.
- Encourage children to spend time listening to their thoughts. When they feel free to speak their own thoughts aloud about a situation, things suddenly become clear.
- Nurture Your Child’s Gift details a diaphragmatic breathing exercise for kids and parents. Shallow breathing is associated with the production of cortisol, the stress hormone. Deeper, effective breathing produces feelings of relaxation and calm.
- Use soothing and rhythmic music, even simple drumming, to help your child relieve muscle tension. It works!
- Don’t overlook exercise for releasing stress and tension. It works for your child just as it does for you. Have children walk the dog, get on the treadmill or stretch through easy yoga movements for children. Any movement they enjoy will help ease stress away.
- Parents can do much to alleviate stress in their children’s lives. Effectively dealing with your own stress is the first step. Showing your kids how to release their stress comes next.
Copyright © Caron B. Goode.
Are you struggling with a decision to become a parent coach? Do you wonder how to succeed with business training?
Entrepreneurship calls to the restless souls who want to serve as financially successful parent coaches. Like you might have questions, I questioned my own decision to start the Academy for Coaching Parents International.
I thoroughly grasp the hesitance in starting a new business and committing to its success--your success. However, one fact will always be sincere....
...In economic tough times, entrepreneurs flourish. Focusing that same worry about time and energy on developing a new service or filling a need in a community is worth your time and effort. You can become a financially successful entrepreneur in a relevant coaching business.
A recent news article stated that in times of economic downturn, the time and energy any person spent looking for another job can be exhausting. And not finding one can cause a sense of hopelessness. I get that too, as I applied for 300 different counseling jobs at the time I received my doctorate. The timing was honestly the worst as government funding had been cut to all major institutions for higher education.
That made sense to me. I understood hopelessness. Major surgery in 2000 left me feeling like attempting anything more than getting well was overwhelming. Then, after the events of 9/11, my seminar business ground to a halt quickly. I refused to give up finding a passion that could also make me financially successful. I had to keep asking myself, "What's Next?" every time I wanted to quit.
What Next to Be Financially Successful?
If people could not come to us, we would go to the people, and the Academy for Coaching Parents International forged ahead to offer other entrepreneurs and nurturers the chance to work at home and be available to their children. Many have become financially successful entrepreneurs.
I had cultivated optimism well, and I would need it.
In January of 2013, all of the fifteen websites associated with my books, coach training and wellness crashed when the hosting server ignored my pleas to examine my site. I asked myself a hundred times if throwing in the towel was the right move.
One of my mentors for the Academy whose book I was ghostwriting was a self-made multimillionaire. When I asked how he went from being a physical education teacher to a millionaire, he encouraged me to focus one hour a day on the marketing of the Academy for Coaching Parents. He explained that focused attention on an object has an exponential effect - in short, what you focus on manifests. That was his secret and soon became mine also. Focusing on the act of creating something new provides a different perspective from those around you.
Focus on the formation of a financially successful business like the Academy brought out strengths that were waiting to be used again. Resilience surfaced and opened the door to passion, which fueled more focus. That kind of discussion moves helplessness out of the way, making room for hope, creativity, and of course, more focus, and eventually financially success in the role!
By now if you have decided to become a financially successful parent coach, but you want to explore the possibilities, we might have something for you.
Explore the coach training programs and decide for yourself, the best training course which aligns with your passion.
Good communication is a key to understanding your child better. Togther, parenting coaches and parents review the steps to maintaining a harmonious relationship that keeps the parent-child relationship healthier and flourishing.
Firstly, be genuinely familiar with your child's language especially during times of conflicts and confrontations.
Familiarize yourself with your child's words, the tone of voice, and emotional responsivity. Does the chid's speech tone suggest a specific emotion like anxiety, shyness, fear, or the need to dominate or be shy?
Secondly, learn how to accept the full range of your child's emotionality.
- How do you take the chid's overall behavior?
- Can you receive the emotions and feelings of your child?
- As you succeed in understanding his feelings, you are better able to guide him to express his unpleasant and unlikely feelings appropriately.
- Encourage a child's real feelings in conversation. Suppression of emotions and feelings are not healthy.
Thirdly, I have observed that not each parent shows a speaking child the courtesy of attention. Interrupting, bombarding the child with questions, or flinging anger and accusation signals that the child maintains her distance. Explain and make him realize that interrupting any speaker is considered rude by some adults.. This is also a way of instilling him some part of good values.
Fourthly, always be approachable. As much as possible, help your child know that she can approach you and not to hesitate to discuss any problem or requests. If the child realizes that open communication between him and you is always possible, imagine how much respect your child has for you!
Fifthly, ask questions so you gather further information, but not in an interrogating manner. Try to ask questions that solicit honest and direct answers from your child. How do you act and speak to your child, so that she feels confident with you.
Lastly, provide useful, helpful and assuring responses to your child's questions. Apply the principles of reflective listening. This way, you could have a clear and actual grasp of what it is your child is trying to tell you. Reflect on his words and the manner by which he talks. Understanding your child entails setting a good pattern of open communication between you both.
I learned about focused positivity from a stranger at a workshop. Positive thinking is a mental attitude that expects good and favorable results. Yet, attitude alone cannot suddenly manifest. A positive mind focuses specifically on the outcome of every situation and action. This is a powerful tool that everyone has, but few realize how to focus attention.
Seymour Taught Me...
Before I started the Academy for Coaching Parents International, I attended a workshop and met a man named Seymour. Our conversations led to one of my first ghostwriting gigs in completing Seymour's nonfiction book. What impressed me about his rags-to-riches story is that he was positive about using focused energy to achieve results, and he became wealthy over time by focusing energy.
His advice to me about starting a new business was that it unfolded through positive concentrated focus. He advised that I put aside several hours for three days a week. In these hours, I would focus solely on one task of my choosing. I chose to focus on formulating and developing the Academy for Coaching Parents International. His theory that my concentrated, focused work for three hours a day, several times a week. allowed my energy to manifest,. Indeed, it did. I learned to trust the process on robust and focused positivity.
Positive Thinking Includes:
1. Our innate capability to produce desired outcomes with positive, focused thoughts. We create our world by the way we think and how we focus those thoughts. We do this by using the power of positive focus. Each conflict or problem that we confront is merely an opportunity to evolve and to alter the circumstances to our liking.2. Having belief in possibilities when the facts seem to indicate otherwise.
3. Making creative choices.
4. Meeting problems head-on sometimes by allowing focus for problems to solve themselves.
The Concept of Positive Focus Explained
Thought precedes form. When we concentrate our focused thinking on one outcome, we trust the process. We don't allow doubt and interruptions to break our concentration. In short, when focusing energy, you also believe in the possibilities of the manifestation. Even if you doubt a concept like Seymour taught me, you can put concentrated focus to the test like I did.
My doubts did not bother Seymour. His support was more like "Try it. You'll like it. If you don't try it, you will never know."
Of course, I tried it. Focusing didn't involve any more than sitting down, stating aloud my goal for the process, and focusing for a three-hour stretch, which I chose. My focus was on researching and eventually manifesting the Academy for Coaching Parents International.
The concentrated thoughts influenced my universe. Each idea, once generated and sent out, becomes independent of the brain and mind and will live on its own energy depending upon its intensity. Thus, my concentrated focus worked.
All of our feelings, beliefs, and knowledge are based on our internal thoughts, both conscious and subconscious. We are in control, whether we know it or not. We can be positive or negative, enthusiastic or dull, active or passive. These attitudes are maintained by the inner conversations we regularly have with ourselves, both consciously and subconsciously.
PLEASE READ: I AM CONSIDERING FORMING A WORKSHOP ON GETTING RESULTS THROUGH CONCENTRATED PURPOSE. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED, PLEASE LEAVE YOUR EMAIL IN COMMENTS, AND I WILL ADD YOU TO THE LIST. IF TEN PEOPLE ARE INTERESTED, I WILL EMAIL YOU AN INVITATION.
DR. CARON GOODE
Sometimes you meet another person, and the two of you instantly click. You hit it off and keeping a conversation going becomes natural and effortless.
Other times, you meet someone and they either don’t leave an impression at all, or you can’t stand them from the start. The big question is what makes the difference? Why do we click with some people and not others?
The answer is rapport, which is defined as a harmonious relationship… people understand each other’s feelings or ideas and communicate well.
When we click with someone, we’re building rapport. We find some common ground, and that instantly connects us. Maybe we have kids the same age or enjoy gardening. Once you establish that connection, it is hard to break. Establishing rapport helps you be better at forging relationships with new clients or neighbors. You let your winning personality shine. This ensures you have that rapport with whoever you meet as often as possible.
Rapport actually starts by paying attention and listening intently. Play Sherlock Holmes and see what you can find out or deduce about the person across from you. Take a genuine interest in their passion and purpose. That’s all it takes to create that initial rapport, and your conversations and interactions will go that much smoother.
Then, you can choose to make the most of this initial connection and rapport. While this strategy may help you get your foot in the door, it’s up to you to treat a client or friend with honesty and respect and make sure that their needs are met. To continue a mutually beneficially relationship, keep in mind what value you provide for them going forward. In other words, clicking with another person is only the first step. It’s important because it gets the two of you off to a great start, but it’s not everything.