By Lori Lite
Stress is contagious…but so is joy! The American Psychology Association noted that 91% of children are aware of parent stress. Holidays bring an increase in emotions, spending, entertaining, traveling, changes in routine, and family stress. Tips reduce Christmas stress, promote family, and make room for more joy.
- Keep various Christmas hats, jingle bells, antlers, small instruments, and elf shoes in an open nearby container. Creative fun for kids, teens, and adults! Join in and lead a parade around your apartment or house. Laugh and you will enjoy less stress and more joy. Film it and share with relatives during the holidays. Children want your time more than presents. Do I hear spontaneous music and laughing?
- Entertaining can cause chaos and stress for the host and their children. Children are often overloaded and over stimulated in a party environment. Try having smaller gatherings instead of one big blow out. Set up a safe space your child can enjoy downtime when they feel over-stimulated at your house or at your relatives. Bring earphones and their special relaxation music or stories. The Indigo Dreams Series gives you choices and actual relaxation techniques. You can download it to their iPod.
- Give children age appropriate assignments to help make the holiday joyful and memorable. Involving children creates memories, increases self-esteem, and strengthens family bonds. Resist the urge to redo their contribution…let the napkin be on the wrong side.
- Introduce the relaxation techniques of breathing and affirmations to your family. Use positive statements like, “I am calm, I am happy, and I am grateful” each day. Take turns creating positive statements about yourself at breakfast or dinner. Encourage children to write their own affirmations and stick a few under their pillow or on their mirror.
Decreasing family stress will increase holiday joy! Our Indigo Dreams CD Series includes stories that introduce positive statements and breathing to you, your children, and your teens. For daily advice follow Lori on Twitter and Face Book . Happy Holidays from Stress Free Kids!