Self-care is important for everyone, but offering some self-care ideas for kids is especially important. Their lives are full of so many different activities and responsibilities, and the more tired they are, the less energy they have to do all those things.
Most adults understand the importance of self-care in their own lives, but may not realise how important it is for children.
Kids who practise self-care are better able to handle stress and tough days. They also feel more ready to face the days ahead because they are recharged and refreshed.
Read on for some pointers brought to you by InstaGreenBaby.
Self-Care Ideas for Kids
Making sure kids are practising self-care isn’t always as easy as it sounds. It’s not just about pamp-ring them with “me time”—although that doesn’t hurt. Kids need to know how to take care of themselves, and the best way to teach them is by modelling those behaviours.
When you have a busy schedule, try mixing up your routine. Spending a little more time at dinner or carving out a few minutes every day for yourself—whether meditating, reading, or taking a walk—can be a refreshing break from everyday life.
To promote an environment that welcomes self-care, be sure that your home is as stress-free as possible. A few simple steps like decluttering and incorporating a few houseplants to bring nature indoors can make the world of difference Add in an essential oil diffuser that emits calming aromas like lavender and you’ve got yourself a Zen den.
And don’t forget about nutrition. Eating healthy snacks together before they tackle their homework can make for an easier evening. It’s also a chance to give your child vegetables they may not eat otherwise.
Finally, don’t be a perfectionist; kids need space and freedom to explore the world, too.
Ways to Encourage Your Children
If you’re struggling with your own self-care routine and are feeling a bit stressed, it can be hard to encourage your children to take care of themselves.
Mindful.org suggests taking the time to be “in the moment” and finding ways to reduce work stress, including mixing up your routine, eating healthy snacks, and not being a perfectionist.
One way to teach self-care ideas to kids is by paying attention to their cues. If they come in from playing outside and are shivering, offer them a warm cup of tea or hot cocoa. Ask them what they need at that moment—maybe some snuggles on the couch or a big hug?
How You Can Practice Self-Care
Practising self-care is often neglected, but it is extremely important for both children and adults. By practising self-care, you are able to better focus on the tasks at hand and be more productive. Children who practice self-care will be more disciplined and focused, which in turn will help them excel academically.
Self-care doesn’t always have to be something you do yourself. Strong4Life notes that one way that parents can help their children practice self-care is by introducing them to gratitude.
Research has shown that practising gratitude, whether by keeping a gratitude journal or simply telling each other what you are grateful for each day, is beneficial for both adults and children. Gratitude can provide a sense of calm, reduce stress and anger, improve health, and increase empathy.
One of the most important self-care rituals for children is exercise. As part of making smart choices for a healthier lifestyle, exercise can boost your child’s mood, help them sleep better, and even improve their behaviour at school. Try to find some time each day to do something active with your child, like biking, walking, or running.
One of the best ways to encourage and role-model self-care for your children is to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness can be as simple as taking a deep breath, focusing on the present moment, or setting aside time for yourself each day. Practising mindfulness gives you the tools you need to teach your child how to take care of themselves.
By encouraging your kids to practice self-care with gratitude, exercise, and mindfulness, you’re sure to see big improvements in their self-esteem and overall well-being. It’s a win-win for everyone involved!
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Written by Anya Willis of FitKids