Teaching Kids to Cope
Many people have never been helped to cope with pain of any kind – disappointment, frustration, anger, fear, insecurity, despair, sadness, rage. So when they feel any of these emotions, they look for a way to obliterate their feelings, rather than modify or manage them.
Practice the following to help your children learn healthy coping skills:
Help children learn to face that life is not always fair
- Explain that it’s not realistic to be happy all the time and why. When a child is unhappy, it is important to:
- Address the real issue, instead of trying to obliterate it
- Discuss how to face your real fears and failures and empower yourself
- Help your child to bear what seems unbearable to him/her
Communicate that physical pain is the body’s warning signal that something is wrong and emotional pain helps us understand that something is wrong inside our minds.
Allow your child to face natural consequences of his/her behavior. As a parent you never want to see your child struggle . However, if you are always rescuing them they will not acquire the practice at coping they need to adapt as healthy adults.
Encourage your child to build a healthy support system to help them during difficult times. That includes guidance counselors, teacher at school, coaches, relatives or other mentors.
Show them how you cope. Be a good/healthy role model. If you have a hard day in the office – do you go for a run or write in your journal?