Anxiety is more than a feeling - it's a biological response to danger or perceived danger. Sometimes children get anxious about things that we just don't understand - but understanding how to react is essential.
The best way to help your child with their anxiety is to put yourself in their position. So you may not get anxious about school or tests, or how many "likes" your selfie has had on Facebook, but the chances are you will get anxious about something sometimes. So, I ask you to think about the one thing that gets your heart pumping and your palms sweating...........maybe it's spiders, maybe its public speaking, maybe its being late. Now ask yourself what helps when you feel like this. Is it helpful for someone to tell you to "calm down", or "just get on with it"? What about if someone tells you "there is really nothing to worry about"? Chances are that those kinds of comments will make you feel worse not better!!
So, imagine you are lost and really late for a really important appointment and you call the person you are meeting - what do you want from them? Most likely you will want the following:
1) Reassurance - "Don't worry, we haven't started the meeting yet so take your time"
2) Empathy - "I really hate that one way system too!"
3) Control - "Take your time, we can wait until you are here"
4) Information "There's loads of free parking and the kettle is on for when you get here!"
What you definitely won't want is the following:
1) Opinions "I really don't like it when people are late!"
2) Sanctions "You will have to stay late to make up the time!"
3) Impatience "Oh for goodness sakes we can't all wait for you so just hurry up!"
4) Sarcasm "Oh don't worry none of us have got anything better to do today!"
When it comes to anxiety your children are no different and all the above will apply.
Contact the Healthy Happy Me team if you would like more tips on anxiety.