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Helping your Child Cope with Anxiety by Modeling Good Behaviors

Watching your child deal with anxiety and stress can lead to parents taking on more stress as well.

10-20% of school-aged children experience anxiety symptoms, while more and more children are experiencing stress that does not qualify as an anxiety disorder. Parents can model good anxiety coping behaviors so their children can witness how to manage feelings. As well as be assured this is a normal part of life.

It’s no surprise a parents’ behavior is one of the main explanations for the behavior exemplified by children. Most often than not, children will copy behaviors of their caregivers.  If we were to use our own responses as a teaching method for modeling the best practices in managing anxiety. It can be beneficial to our children overall to the self-care of parents for themselves.

Modeling appropriate self-care, positive thinking, and anxiety approach behaviors can be the key to a child succeeding at handling their own anxieties and worries.  When a parent can demonstrate the importance of relaxation and taking some “me time,” children will notice these actions as positive behaviors.

Good Starting Points To Teach Children To Experience Anxiety

  • Staying calm
  • Self-care
  • Problem-solving
  • Relaxation exercises
  • Encouragement to express anxiety

Focusing on the positive, acknowledging the worry as real, and rewarding brave behavior are all beneficial behaviors to show that it’s okay to experience anxiety.  It’s okay not to be perfect and worry, it’s okay to ask for help.  Modeling these sentiments for children gives them the empathy and the tools they need to identify their anxiety and begin to move on from it.

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