Nervousness is something that all of us can relate to. Who has never been nervous before? However, it is also possible that kids develop their own anxiety issue and dealing with such a thing has never been easy. Being a parent doesn’t mean that you should sit and watch, not doing anything about it. In fact, there are some handy parenting skills that you can develop to treat the issue but a sure thing first, you need to be there for them. It is not easy but it doesn’t mean that it is impossible either.
After being there for them, remember to use the breathing technique and do it with them. In one of the parenting techniques, breathing can reduce the anxiety. It is a simple and yet effective technique that can calm your nerves down. Perform a deep and slow breathing. Known as the belly breathing, you can ask your kids to image the air travel through the nose, down into the windpipe, and to the belly. A deep and slow breathing can relax muscles and calm down any tense reactions. Do it together with them; they will appreciate your company. Not only the calm breathing can calm the nerves down, they know that you are with them – and it is the most important thing for them.
In anxiety, there is way to avoid Automatic Negative Thoughts (also known as ANTS). Somehow, ANTS and anxiety are related to each other because it is a perspective about how others think about you – and how you develop a certain psychological reaction to it. You can ask your kids to gather around and draw their ANTS. One kid may think that she is a failure and one may think that everyone thinks he’s a failure. Change those negative thoughts with positive reinforcement and thinking, such as ‘I have done my best so I’m not a failure’ or ‘I will get better with regular practice’. Positive reinforcement is one of the parenting skills you will learn to deal with.
Another parenting skills that you can learn to cope with anxiety is to develop an exposure strategy. For instance, if your kid always experiences breath shortness whenever he is nervous and anxious, you can ask him to practice breathing. Ask him to sit together with the parents and then ask him to hold his breath. Through this, he can learn that he can experience the physical symptoms without having to go through the panic or anxiety stage. This strategy is said better than avoidance because it helps him to cope with his fear. And with his parents’ being there for him, he can learn that they care for him and they are willing to go through everything to solve his issue.
Such skills can be learned by yourself or you can ask the help from professional expert to help you and guide you. It may be considered unimportant but there is no such a thing as useless parenting skills – no matter what. Knowing the basic skills can help, no matter how little it is.