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Helping Kids Help Themselves

become responsible, happy, and successful

Stressed Out Kids

by Joy Berry on June 18, 2023

“Kids are more stressed out than ever before.” It’s a claim that’s evidenced by the current demand for self-help resources for kids including books for 11 year olds

Although stressors (the things that cause stress) might change for every generation of kids, stress itself has been a common denominator in kids’ lives throughout the ages. Think about it. Did kids who lived during the Great Depression and World War II experience less stress than kids living today?

It makes no difference the era during which kids experience stress. What’s important is how adults respond to signs of their kids’ stress as well as how their kids are handling that stress.

How to Help Children and Teens Manage Their Stress, is an excellent article that was updated and rereleased in 2022 by the American Psychological Association. In addition to other helpful information and advice, the article provides the common signs of kids’ stress—which include the following:

Irritability and Anger (being more short-tempered or argumentative than normal)

Behavioral Changes (becoming more withdrawn or acting out more)

Sleep Challenges (being tired all the time or sleeping less or more than normal)

Neglected Responsibilities (failing to do homework or other tasks)

Eating Changes (eating compulsively or eating too much or too little)

Continual Illnesses (more headaches, stomachaches, or trips to the school nurse)

By recognizing and responding to the warning signs, parents can help address the stress in their kids’ lives. However, in the end, it is up to kids to take the necessary steps to alleviate the stress in their lives. To this end, I wrote, A Winning Skills Book – You  Can Handle Stress. This engaging, cartoon-illustrated book speaks directly to kids about the causes of stress and what can be done to avoid stress or handle it in positive instead of negative ways.

Among the Four Ways to Deal With Stress are the following Six Steps to Overcoming Negative Stressors: 

STEP ONE – Decide what problem needs to be solved.

STEP TWO – Decide what the possible solutions are.

STEP THREE – Consider the advantages and disadvantages that each solution offers.

STEP FOUR – Choose the best solution.

STEP FIVE – Do what needs to be done to solve the problem.

STEP SIX – Think about whether or not your actions have solved the problem in the most positive way.

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