What’s the so­lu­tion?

Living and Loving - - FAMILY INSPIRATION -

There are myr­iad ways to boost your child’s brain into be­ing less anx­ious and more re­silient, but the key is to start with the ba­sics and cel­e­brate ev­ery step to­wards less stress, An­drew ad­vises.

The foun­da­tion of a less anx­ious mind­set is a healthy diet and en­vi­ron­ment, cou­pled with sup­port­ive par­ents with a can-do at­ti­tude.

FO­CUS ON FOOD. Get take­aways only once a month, in­crease veg­eta­bles and avoid soft drinks.

GET A GOOD NIGHT’S REST. Ex­plore ways to soothe your lit­tle one into a peace­ful sleep and nail down a con­sis­tent bed­time rou­tine. Even if it doesn’t work well, the idea is still there, and pro­vides a sense of se­cu­rity and bound­aries (some­thing anx­ious chil­dren, in par­tic­u­lar, need).

I LOVE YOU! You can’t tell your child this enough – lav­ish him with af­fec­tion.

THAT’S IN­TER­EST­ING! Show en­thu­si­asm for, and in­ter­est in, any new ideas he has.

GO ON, HAVE A GO! En­cour­age at­tempt­ing some­thing new and re­mind him, again and again, that mis­takes are not only al­lowed, but nor­mal. Even the small­est step is a big step, such as hold­ing Dad’s hand, rather than Mom’s, dur­ing an out­ing.

NAP OR QUIET TIME. The brain is hard-wired to be­come over­crowded by sen­sory in­put, so time away from noise and peo­ple is im­por­tant.

EN­COUR­AGE SPORT AND

PHYS­I­CAL AC­TIV­ITY. This helps both brain and body to re­lax.

TAKE FAM­ILY WALKS.

| L&L I BE­LIEVE IN YOU. Tell your child this of­ten, in sim­ple, ageap­pro­pri­ate lan­guage. He needs to know he has a cham­pion. As par­ents, we need to con­stantly check in with our­selves, too, and our own be­hav­iour, says An­drew.

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