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Self-Care Ideas for Kids: How to Prioritize Rest and Mental Health

Self-care has become an essential part of everyday life and conversation, and for a good reason. Our lives today are more complicated and busy than ever, and slowing down has become more critical. However, have you ever thought about how your kids need self-care just as much as you do? Today, we share easy ways to help your child prepare for the days ahead.

Compassion Break

One of the best ways you can help your children reset after a difficult period or event is with a compassion break. A compassion break is a three-step routine that can be broken down as follows:

  • Step 1: Acknowledge the difficult moment (for example, writing this essay is very challenging).
  • Step 2: Understand that the feeling is not unique and that such feelings come and go in life (for example, this is a challenging class, and sometimes writing essays can be tricky).
  • Step 3: Break down what can be done to help yourself and be kind to yourself (for example, I can study more and get help from my instructors to better prepare myself for writing this essay).

Once your kid starts looking at difficulties in this way, they will be better equipped to deal with life’s many unexpected challenges and problems.

Caring For the Body

Exercise, hydration, and nutrition are essential to optimal social and emotional health. You could try different activities with your kids that they could incorporate into their current routines as they please. For example, include physical activity by taking a family walk or bike ride. You could also sign up for a virtual exercise class or kids’ boot camp for them.

Cooking healthy meals together a few times a week is another excellent option. It can get them to learn new cooking skills and understand healthy ingredients that help nourish their body. In addition, explain to your kids the many benefits of drinking water to encourage adequate hydration. You could also swap out sugary drinks for healthy choices, such as water infusions with fruit and herbs.

Mental Health Support

According to a study by VeryWell Family, one in four children is stressed. Another survey reports that 14% of children today are also depressed. Supporting your child through their mental health struggles or journey will be critical in helping them deal with stress, anxiety, and more.

Virtual therapy makes access to mental health services more manageable, making it more convenient, secure, and private and less of a commitment than in-person therapy. You could also explore different therapy options like music therapy through instrument and singing lessons.

Incorporate Rest

According to Highly Sensitive Refuge, even the most extroverted child needs time to rest independently. Consider your child’s personality, age, and interests to develop ways to rest within their daily routine. For some kids, this might be a quiet hour of coloring, while for others, it could be a nap or reading in their room.

Don’t forget to model the idea of rest for your children by prioritizing it daily and showing that it is possible to make time for rest even with a busy schedule. You could even start a bedtime routine at the end of the day that allows you to connect with your child. This way, you can read bedtime stories, talk about the day, or rest together for a bit. These little connections can make a huge difference.

Children and teenagers must learn the importance of taking care of themselves. This can help them become aware of their physical and emotional needs, which allows them to prepare for future stressors. Impart the gift of self-care to your friends and watch as they thrive and start to level up daily!

The Kids with Compassion initiative prompts children to create artwork and cards to lift the spirits of seniors residing in senior living. Learn more!


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