If you find yourself feeling more nervous than usual in light of the darkness in our world right now, imagine how your children may be feeling. Seeing other people's worry, fear, and anxiety has a tendency to breed more worry, fear, and anxiety, making it difficult — especially for little ones who may not understand the gravity of events occurring around the world — to continue to feel safe even in the most familiar of environments.
Here are 10 quick tips to ensure your kids feel secure, protected, and safe every day.
- Meet their basic needs. Kids who are happy, full, and well-rested are more likely to feel secure in their environment, especially when they are leaving the safety of home.
- Keep a routine. Even in the hardest of times, sticking to a routine as much as possible will keep things feeling familiar and secure.
- Encourage responsibility. Within your routine, enforce chores, rules, and expectations. Kids in chaotic, rule-free homes may feel more frustrated and insecure.
- Work it out. Help your kids release tension and anxiety through physical activity. Run around, play games outside, get energy out, then unwind with relaxing activities.
- Be mindful of the media. Beware of exposing kids to news that might be too upsetting to them, but be prepared to discuss tragedies they learn about calmly.
- Remind them they're not alone. When they express fear or worry, remind them that it's normal to be scared at times and talk to them about how you handle your fears.
- Let them know you're there. It never hurts to remind your kids constantly that you're there for them no matter what and that they can talk to you about anything.
- Dole out the hugs. Though it seems like a small thing, a hug or two a day to show your love can help a stressed-out child immediately feel more secure.
- Give them helpful tools. Help them memorize important information in case of emergency (and program helpful numbers into their phones).
- Encourage comforting items. Loveys elicit safe feelings, so encourage your child to snuggle up to theirs when they're feeling scared or worried.