It is no news that the COVID-19 pandemic brings feelings like stress, anxiety, and uncertainty which are felt especially by children of different ages. Children have been prone to these emotions not entirely because of the pandemic, but because of the effects, the pandemic has caused such as separation from classmates and friends, canceled events, school closures, and isolation. Although they express and feel these negative emotions differently, they all would need support from their parents and guardians.
We spoke to experts and psychologists and they share with us some of the ways how parents can show support to their children in this pandemic.
- Be proactive towards your children
Being proactive involves a lot of things. This includes being calm and proactive when conversing about the Coronavirus diseases and its impact on their daily lives. Parents can also highlight the important role that children play in keeping themselves healthy and away from the disease. When the kids have the virus, parents need to stay calm and reassure children that symptoms may be felt but there are ways to combat and cure the disease. While it is understandable to feel nervous, parents should be the ones to be proactive in the situation rather than worsening the negative feelings of their kids. Negative emotions towards the virus may force kids to keep their symptoms secret and may thwart the necessary procedure to cure them.
Being proactive and calm also involves being understanding of their performance as a result of the pandemic and isolation. Talks to your children if they feel demotivated and create distractions that could induce positive emotions in your children. Being punishing for low performance caused by low mood does not help.
- Go out with nature
This year, people are slowly going out of their houses. You can use this opportunity to go out and bond with your family in a private space like the Pinetop cabins that allow them to feel nature without risking being exposed to many people.
Bonding with your family with nature is very beneficial both for the mind and body. Research shows that seeing greens and breathing fresh air helps a lot in reducing stress, which also induces happy hormones. This is an opportune moment to be with your family without thinking too much about work and academic responsibilities.
- Stick to a routine
Children are very chaotic and they need a structure that will keep them on track in a day. The new normal has broken the boundaries between academic tasks, school, assignments, house tasks, and personal time. This is why ensuring that they stick to a routine to keep them productive and motivated is crucial. The time spent on studies should be different from when they do their hobbies or connect with their friends.
- Be self-assessing
Parents feel emotions too, and children can get some cues, which also implicitly affects theirs. This is why managing your emotions as an adult helps and benefits the family a lot. Take note that children rely on their guardians for security and safety.
For more information about how to support your kids amid pandemic, visit UNICEF.